The curse of the fa­ther of Daugh­ters

Metro Canada (Edmonton) - - Views -

vicky mochama

Matt Da­mon, the ac­tor, is a Fa­ther of Daugh­ters.

Asked by Dead­line to com­ment on the rev­e­la­tions that Har­vey We­in­stein has been a se­rial preda­tor and abuser of women, Da­mon re­sponded: “Look, even be­fore I was fa­mous, I didn’t abide this kind of be­hav­iour. But now, as the fa­ther of four daugh­ters, this is the kind of sex­ual pre­da­tion that keeps me up at night.”

When he was a pleb like the rest of us, Matt Da­mon was against sex­ual as­sault. But now, he is a Fa­ther of Daugh­ters and the thought of it haunts him so much that he can­not sleep.

This is the curse of the Fa­ther of Daugh­ters. Be­com­ing one is a dif­fi­cult and un­der-dis­cussed process.

Un­til men be­come Fa­thers of Daugh­ters, they’re not cer­tain that women are peo­ple. They would ask their wife, good old what’s-her-name with the, I wanna say, brown hair. But she’s al­ways com­plain­ing about how hard it is to be a woman; there’s just no talk­ing to her. Not un­til the meta­mor­pho­sis hap­pens can they truly un­der­stand.

It hap­pens sud­denly with­out warn­ing over a pe­riod of nine months or so. One minute, they are stand­ing there think­ing Man Thoughts and watch­ing the wife pant, push and holler. Surely, the Man Thinks, she could be a lit­tle less dra­matic about this whole birth thing. Af­ter all, peo­ple are try­ing to think Man Thoughts over here.

Then a ray of light bursts from his body. His trousers turn into multi-pocket con­vert­ible cargo pants. His skin turns coarse like sand­pa­per. His eyes see a tiny be­ing and the mind, with­out prompt­ing, thinks: “I shall teach her how to use a ham­mer.” He is now a Fa­ther To A Daugh­ter.

The Fa­ther­ing is a spe­cial oc­ca­sion, the mo­ment a man re­al­izes that a girl is a hu­man be­ing and that that is a good thing. Clearly, it’s a lot to take in, which ex­plains the whole coarse skin thing.

Some fa­thers are lucky to be­come a Fa­ther to Plu­ral Daugh­ters. And each daugh­ter en­ables them see more clearly. To be a Fa­ther of Daugh­ters is to be a highly evolved mu­tant in a world of mor­tals, although Moth­ers of Daugh­ters get mad if you say that out loud to them.

The Fa­ther of Daugh­ters uses his new­found clar­ity with pride to say things that only — only! — he can. Like Con­ser­va­tive leader Andrew Scheer, who said last month: “As a fa­ther of daugh­ters, I want en­sure that gen­der­based stereo­types have no place in Canada or Cana­dian pol­i­tics.” Pre­sum­ably, be­fore the Daugh­ters, he was su­per into gen­der-based stereo­types.

Daugh­ters are givers of wis­dom. For some Fa­thers of Daugh­ters, it is al­most too much.

Or as an­other Fa­ther of Daugh­ters put it: “I’ve said, If Ivanka weren’t my daugh­ter, per­haps I’d be dat­ing her.”

vicky mochama

is Metro’s na­tional colum­nist. She ap­pears ev­ery Mon­day, Wed­nes­day and Thurs­day.

PHilOSO­PHer CaT

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