Growing Pains

Tomorrow will be my oldest daughter’s official first day of High school at home. We have decided that homeschooling her through high school would be the best option for her.

My daughter is academically gifted according to the states educational standards. She is in all Honors classes at the public school and is excelling in her extracurricular academic activities. She is not a disrespectful child, however she is a strong willed child. If she does not agree with us, then she will try to find a way to deviate from our instructions.

Particularly in the area of courting. She desires to date and is willing to date irregardless of our instructions. We define dating as the process of an individual choosing their own partners with the involvement of their parents with no specific goal or purpose for the relationship. We define courting as the parents and child (adult or minor) participating as a family in choosing a potential mate for the purpose of marriage.

She claims that the boy that she likes is a very nice boy, which we don’t doubt. Where the problem lies is that if the boy is so nice than why did she not allow us to meet with him before agreeing to date him? Why than do we have to hear about it from a student at her school?

Here is why? She knows that we are not going to approve of her courting at the age of fourteen and two she doesn’t want to have to wait on our approval.

Her inability to speak openly and honestly about these tough choices is an indication to us that she is not ready to date or court. She knows the requirements for beginning the courting process. She knew the consequences for disobeying, which were that she’d be home schooled the remainder of high school.

Here is one scriptural basis for our decision. I have included 3 different versions:

Song of Solomon 8:6-8 says

The Message

The Woman said;

My brothers used to worry about me: “Our little sister has no breasts. What shall we do with our little sister when men come asking for her? She’s a virgin and vulnerable, and we’ll protect her. If they think she’s a wall, we’ll top it with barbed wire. If they think she’s a door, we’ll barricade it. ” Dear brothers, I’m a walled-in virgin still, but my breasts are full—And when my lover sees me, he knows he’ll soon be satisfied.”

The Amplified

Gathered with her family and the wedding guests in her mother’s cottage, the bride said to her stepbrothers, “When I was a little girl, you said ‘We have a little sister and she has no breasts. What shall we do for our sister on the day when she is spoken for in marriage?'”

“If she is a wall [discreet and womanly], we will build upon her a turret [a dowry] of silver; but if she is a door [bold and flirtatious], we will enclose her with boards of cedar.”

[Well] I am a wall [with battlements], and my breasts are like the towers of it. Then was I in [the king’s] eyes as one [to be respected and to be allowed] to find peace.

New Living Translation

The Young Woman’s Brothers said “We have a little sister too young to have breasts. What will we do for our sister if someone asks to marry her? If she is a virgin, like a wall, we will protect her with a silver tower. But if she is promiscuous, like a swinging door, we will block her door with a cedar bar.”

Young Woman replied “I was a virgin, like a wall; now my breasts are like towers.When my lover looks at me, he is delighted with what he sees.

My daughter is in some instances a wall, pure, undefiled, and vulnerable and we shall continue to build her up according to the words of the Lord. At the same time she is bold and flirtatious thinking that she knows more about young boys than we do. Therefore we will enclose her in boards of cedar.

There will come a time when she does not have to abide by our guidelines, but while she is still our child she will adhere to the rules of our home. She will not die from denying herself the opportunity to begin courting for another year or two. What we are looking for as her parents is the discipline to deny her own will and also the maturity to trust the parents that God has blessed her with.

Below are two other post that I have written on this subject:

Proverbs Wife: Courting or Dating: Is there a Difference?

Proverbs Wife: Parenting 101: Preparing for Marriage

In addition, stop by and see what I tackled over at my blog “The Wife at Home”.


  1. Hadias says

    My daughters biggest reason for disobeying us is that is makes her feel powerful. However it is her lack of wisdom that makes her believe that she is not already in charge.

    You said it so correctly in your statement "Our daughters need to understand the power they wield, in whom they choose, & how they choose as well." If only she could understand (now) the power that she truly posseses. Nevertheless, she will gain that understanding one day.

    satan is so crafty in his way of tempting us to sin to obtain that which we already posses through Christ Jesus.


  2. Anonymous says

    Thanks for your prayers & good wishes, Hadias. I am praying hard, myself!

    I'm happy that you're familiar with the Cosby episode I referred to. I remember feeling kind of annoyed (at first) at Cliff's behavior toward the fiance. After a couple of minutes it dawned on me that he was only treating him the way Vanessa, herself, had done! In an overt fashion, of course. Our daughters need to understand the power they wield, in whom they choose, & how they choose as well.



  3. Hadias says

    Hey Brenda,

    I still watch the Cosby show just as I did as a child. The only diiference is that now I watch it with my children.

    I remember that episode, when Vanessa bought Dabness home to meet her parents after they had alredybeen engaged.

    Cliff pulls out the garbage can top and talks about a meal served on top of it.

    In my opinion, it was Vanessa that set him up for failure. She knew the expectation that her parents had and her choics caused Dabness to get off to a wrong start with her parents.

    Thanks for reminding me about that episode. It was good for me to think about the situation from someone elses experience, even if it was a fictional experienece from televeision.

    I pray that your daughters will have the boldnes to come and talk with you when they are interested in dating. I pray also that they will honor your decision if you advise them that a guy may not be good for them.

    God bless,


  4. Anonymous says

    I so appreciate your sharing this with all of us other parents, Hadias. I keep waiting for "the other shoe to drop", as it's said, with my daughters & their interest in boys. By that I mean, so far so good. I hear names of this boy or that, & sometimes they will even tell me, when we're out somewhere, "Mom, look, there's So-&-So" I have learned to consider this a conversational opener. I have learned that they may or may not be interested in this particular boy…sometimes they'll tell me that one of their girlfriends likes him…or that they found out he liked them last Spring….& so it goes. I used to think it was silly. I do not anymore. And I think that's a good thing.

    Back to this "other shoe": my girls have not had their first date yet (they are 16 & 15). They haven't expressed to me a desire to do so, & I've wondered why. They do know if there is a boy they like enough, that they need to invite him here to our home for us to meet (supper with us, or a movie maybe). You most definitely nailed it, Hadias, when you said "where the problem lies is that if the boy is so nice then why did she not allow us to meet with him before agreeing to date him?" I believe you are right to feel slighted by this behavior. It reminds me of a "Cosby" episode I once saw, where one of the daughters became engaged to be married, without her parents even having met the young man. Bill was not impressed. At the dinner table, the daughter's fiance challenges Bill on the fact that he is not behaving very friendly toward him. And Bill says something to the effect of "It's because Vanessa brought you here & presented you to us on a garbage can lid." Wow!!! If their relationship was so special, so wonderful, if HE was so great, then why didn't the daughter see fit to say, "I want you to meet my folks"…..?

    I watch & wait…& talk & listen.



  5. mary grace says

    It’s me again. I HAD to reply to your reply to my comment … (phew!)


    A big, huge, THANK YOU.

    Jo has recently completely shaken free of the whole notion of “youth grou” and even her main group of friends. She has been completely comfortable with this, and it was actually her doing. She is not even going to the youth service–she is staying with dh and I.

    I was actually starting to feel nervous that she was “falling behind her peers socially.” Had just prayed to that effect this afternoon–Lord, please help me encourage her to be with her friends if that’s where she needs to be.

    Then I came home and saw your reply.

    God answered me through you. THANK YOU.


  6. Hadias says

    Hello Mary Grace~

    Thank you for stopping by and also for your feedback here at A Day in the Life Of…

    I realized my daughters commitment to courtship slipping when she began 6th grade middle school (age 11). Dating amongst her peers became more acceptable with many of the other students parents.

    School home relations changed because at that age our schools want to children to become more independent of the family.

    Since she was our first teen (oldest child) we went with the flow although we were not at peace with the arrangemet.

    She began to make friends at school that we did not know. Three girls in particular who had experience with dating, heavy petting and sex.

    She become secretive, and began to seperate herself from the family, usually wanting to be in her room with the door closed. Not particpating much with the family. I knew something ws wrong, I just didn’t know what, and she wasn’t telling.

    Her grades dropped a bit which caused me to begin sitting in on her classes. I later learned that she had been dating and had experienced a break-up or two.

    The biggest bit of wisdom that I would give myself in retrospect is that I should not have compromised on things such as friends.

    I believe that you assimilate to who you associate with. I allowed her to hang out with girls with loose or no morals. Ultmately, she began to desire what she precieved as freedom from restriction.

    Since the 6th grade, we now help her choose friends and also restrict her hanging out with friends who we percieve could be a bad influence.

    I don’t believe that this should be the case with all children. My daughter is easily influenced and strong willed. These traits can be used for good or for evil and my husband and I have chosen to guard her heart for her until she becomes an adult. Either she will take hold of the Lords will or not. Her salvation is her choice and whether or not she remains pure until marriage is also her choice.

    Thank you all for your prayers, encouragement and support.


  7. Hadias says

    Dear Lord

    You know us all by name. You know all of our fears and struggles. As Anonymous and her family go through this time of their daughters rebellion, I pray that you will remind them of your promises. Remind them that you are with them and that you will never foresake them.

    Help them to surrender their daughter to you. Help them to know that you are in control even when life seems as though it is out of control.

    I pray for the family’s peace and I also pray that their daughter will be victorious against the temptations that she faces.


  8. mary grace says

    Your post has made me stop and think. My only daughter (Jo) just turned 11. Our standards for courtship seem to be quite similar to yours. Since she was a preschooler, we have presented them not as OUR standards, but as GOD’S. I have a feeling that you may have presented the concept of courtship in a similar way. Jo has several friends at church who are interested in boys, but she is very dismissive of their fancies and points out that she is not ready to find the person she is to marry. I assume that this is typical of an 11 year-old raised with an expectation of courtship rather than dating.

    Without prying too deeply into your personal life, would you perhaps mind sharing at what point you realized that your daughter’s commitment to the courtship ideal began to slip? In retrospect, were there any signs? Are there any bits of wisdom you can pass on to those of us walking behind you?


  9. Anonymous says

    Oh my your situation sounds so much like mine!

    My 14 year old just started Public High School this year and it’s only been about 2 months of school and we are already having problems. she even ran away from home because we had found some very very suggestive pictures on a myspace page that we did not know she had. We also found out through her page that she was dating a boy that we knew nothing about.

    Oh how I wish I can bring her back home but my husband thinks we can get through this by changing her clothes, her bedroom and montoring her more closely.

    All though I think some of these things are needed but I don’t think he really understands at this point that she will just find other ways to follow out what it is she wants to do.

    I pray that she will see the error of her ways and will turn from being disobident and a rebel.

    My daughter has also been on the honor roll when she was in public school and as of the progress report from H.S. she will most likely be on Honor Roll in H.S as well.

    I suppose that’s neither here nor there when she is seeming to be heading down the wrong path.

    I will pray for your children and family and I ask of you if it’s not a problem, if you will pray for mine as well.

    God Bless


  10. Hadias says

    Sallie, thanks for telling me about your daughters post. She has a really nice blog. I will stop by and visit hers tomorrow.

    Thanks for stoping by Sallie


  11. Hadias says

    Mrs. Mordecai

    Thank you for your encouraging words.I am certain that I am doing what is best for my daughter and it’s good to know that their are still parents out there who, like me, have a standard of purity until marriage.


  12. Mrs. Accountability says

    Hadias, I would highly recommend Every Young Woman’s Battle: Guarding Your Mind, Heart, and Body in a Sex-Saturated World as well as Preparing Your Daughter for Every Woman’s Battle: Creative Conversations about Sexual and Emotional Integrity. Both by Shannon Ethridge. Also Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliott. If you haven’t read them already, they will be of help.


  13. Earthmommy says

    Hadias, I think you made a wise decision. It sounds as if your daughter is stil naive about dating and relationships. Weren’t we all at 14? She may feel as though you are restricting her, but what you are really giving her is the wonderful gift of parental protection and Godly guidance. One day, when the wonderful man the Lord has made for her comes into her life and she is filled with true love for him, she will look back on this with gratitude!

    We’ll be keeping you in our prayers, please keep us updated!


  14. Mrs. Mordecai says

    In our church, we wait until we’re 16 to date. Looking back, I think it’s great to wait until you’re a bit more mature and level-headed. Plus, how does dating work if neither party can drive? I’ve always wondered. What do they do? 🙂


  15. Lisa says

    I'll check and see what I have left–I know a few boxes are still down at the Indiana house–but plenty of time for next year! We loved and Rod & Staff for math & English. Science we used a wonderful program called "Considering God's Creation" done by a homeschool mom. All are wonderful. I'll get back to you in a week or so with what I have.


  16. Sallie says

    Hadias — I’m so right there with you!!! Nothing we said to our daughter mattered and she was doing things to figure out exactly how she could get away with disobediance, too. Then, she picked up Before You Meet Prince Charming and re-read it. Now, she is changing her tune quite a bit. She wrote a post on her blog about it.

    Praying with ya, sister!!

    God bless,


  17. Hadias says

    Hey Lisa. All of my school aged children did return to public school this year.

    Only my (14 year old) daugther will no longer be in public school. She will be homeschooled the remainder of highschool.

    I will homeschool my 4 year old for kindergarten next year. My first grader and thrid grader would like to be homeschooled next year as well. We will ask them again at the end of the school year, and if they still want to be homeschooled then I will most likely homeschool them all.

    So it sounds like I (may) have them all at home next year.

    I stopped by your blog yesterday to see if you were still selling curriculum and I saw that you had two new blogs. I like the CM blog that you set up.


  18. Lisa says

    I’m praying for you and your daughter. I thought your kids had all gone back to public school like mine. I’m assuming this is a new decision on your daughter’s education. I know in the end it will be a blessing for her to be at home with you. [I am very envious.] I also know it won’t be easy for a while. I will keep you all in prayer.
    Lisa @


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