Over the years, I have periodically written about when my six daughters were teenagers. During those years, I attempted to drive home the point that they needed to be careful not to let their guard down when they met a nice guy who appeared to have his act together. I did my best to persuade them to work at discovering the qualities and defects of the young men they met before developing a relationship with them.
In August 2015, I wrote an article with the title, Just A Nice Guy, that discussed this topic. Last month (July 2021), I wrote about the five requirements that I had for any man who wanted to marry one of my daughters. The title of that article was Six Grooms for Six Daughters.
In June 2018, in an article titled True Love Requires Sacrifice & Suffering, I wrote about an experience I had when I took the deposition of a 28-year-old woman who testified that she had moved from Iowa to Illinois with her boyfriend when he started a new job in Illinois. She further testified that after living in Illinois with her boyfriend for three years, he accepted a job in another state, and she was going to quit her job and move with him to that state.
I then wrote about how frustrated I am at what is now considered normal behavior for young women to move in with their boyfriends before they are married and then wait — sometimes for several years — to see if he is going to make a commitment and ask her to marry him. I indicated that the question that usually pops into my mind when I meet a young woman who has allowed herself to be in this situation: Why have you surrendered your heart and your body to a man who is not willing to commit his life to you?
While my daughters were growing up, I made it clear to them why they should never agree to move in with a man before they are married to him. By the time they were old enough to date, they were fully aware of how sinful and foolish it is for a woman to give a man all the benefits of marriage without a lifetime commitment from him. They also knew that without such a commitment, they could easily be discarded after dedicating several years of their life to the man.
I recently thought about my daughters’ dating years when I heard Andrew Klavan answer a question that had been submitted to him by one of the viewers of his weekly talk show.
Andrew Klavan is the author of more than 30 books and movies. He is 67 years old. He has been nominated five times for the Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Award, and he won the award on two of those five occasions. Over the years, he has written for numerous publications, including the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and the Manhattan Institute’s City Journal.
Klavan was born and raised in New York by secular Jewish parents. In his non-fiction book, The Great Good Thing: A Secular Jew Comes to Faith in Christ (2016), Klavan described his spiritual journey from secular Judaism to agnosticism to atheism and then finally to Christianity. He was baptized as a Christian when he was 49 years old. In an interview that he gave after he became a Christian, Klavan said, “It wasn’t easy at first. I didn’t have any religious tradition to turn to. I had to learn how to pray from scratch.” In another interview, he said, “Christianity cannot be forced, it can only be chosen.”
Klavan currently has a weekly talk show on Dailywire.com. The streaming video channel, IMDb TV, provides this short summary of Klavan’s show: “Laugh your way through Armageddon with political satire, cultural commentary, interviews, and relentless mockery of modern absurdities.”
Klavan is one of my favorite political commentators. One of the reasons I really like him is because he backs up all his statements and opinions with facts, logic, and reason, and he’s not afraid to speak his mind and say it like it is.
Because he speaks the truth and backs up what he says with bullet-proof arguments, Klavan is frequently criticized and ridiculed by people who are on the opposite side of the political spectrum.
At a speech that Klavan gave to students and their parents at Hillsdale College a couple of years ago, he said, “My wife tells me that my mission in life is to alienate every single human being alive.” You may find this hard to believe, but over the years, my wife has told me that exact same thing. That’s probably one of the hidden reasons I like Klavan. I would rather be like him than the thousands of ignorant buffoons who populate Hollywood, our government, and the national media.
On Klavan’s weekly show, he usually ends the show by answering questions that his viewers have submitted. On a recent show, one of the questions reminded me of what I discussed above about my experience with my daughters. I rarely do this, but I’m going to quote, verbatim, the question and Klavan’s answer. Here’s what Klavan said:
Question: I’m a 20-year-old male and got engaged to my fiancé, who is also 20, about 10 months ago. We’d been dating for two years. I haven’t had any serious relationships before her. She’s Catholic, conservative, feels called to be a mom. She laughs at my jokes. She supports me almost to a fault, and what I’m working on. My family loves her.
About six months ago, I started having second thoughts, so much so that I told the priest a few months ago that I realized that I could not then say my vows at the altar, and we ended up postponing the marriage. I’m wondering at what point I’m supposed to break off the relationship altogether.
I can’t seem to shake the feeling that I’m settling for less with her, but also I realize she hit so many boxes as to what I would want in a wife. And I wouldn’t want to sacrifice what is a blessing because of a feeling I can’t shake.
I don’t always feel that we should split, particularly when I’m with her. I like how things are, but fairly frequently I feel disingenuous. Do I tough it out and hope the ability to honestly commit comes back? Do I break up sooner rather than later? Should I just wait and see? Can we take a break, or is that a coward’s way out? Thanks for your help. I’m caught between an emotional rock and a lonely hard place.
Answer: You have a condition which is called being a jerk. And I actually say this with compassion and love, but you are being a jerk. And you sound like a better man than that. So, I’m being straight with you. What you’re doing is utterly, utterly wrong.
Feminists tell us that we don’t need to take care of women. They’re lying. We need to take care of women. And one of the ways we take care of women is we do not string them along. Women in their youth are at the peak of their beauty and attractiveness. It is the time when they can best attract the kind of man they want in their life. She wants to be a mom. That’s when they can have children most easily.
You do not use that time up while you sit around with your thumb up your wazoo, dithering over whether you like this girl enough or not. Let her go. Let her find somebody who deserves her. Because right now, in the state you are in now, the state of maturity you are in now, you do not. You do not deserve her. You should let her go.
To say, “We should go on a break” is that a coward’s way out? I can’t use on the air words strong enough to tell you how cowardly it is. You have blown it, but you need to grow up a little bit. And you’re not going to take her time away from her while you sit around and grow up. That is not the right thing to do.
The right thing to do is to let her go. Let her have the life she wants, the children she wants with somebody who appreciates her as you don’t seem to. And listen, pal, maybe you’re right. Maybe you can find somebody else who is better. But the point now is you are not mature enough for this relationship, but you are mature enough to be a man and let her go. And that is my advice.
You could do the opposite and marry her, but you better realize that that’s for life. There is no divorce after that. You better realize if you’re going to do that, that’s for life. But whatever you do, stop dithering. Make your decision this very day and act on it because what you’re doing now, it’s just utterly, utterly wrong.
Wow! No one I know could have answered that question better than Klavan. No one. There is still hope for America. Why? Because we have brilliant, devout Christian men like Klavan who are willing to provide leadership to others and say it like it is.