By Adam Jeske

A Letter to My 8-Year-Old Daughter on Super Bowl Sunday

We are about to go to our friends’ house to watch the Super Bowl. There are a few things I want to tell you.

Although this seems like a really big deal, it isn’t. It’s just that the people in our country don’t have anything to get excited about all together anymore. We used to get excited together about fighting against the British and stuff, but we haven’t all gotten excited about the same stuff in a long time. So we get all worked up about this game instead.

You are not less of a person because you can never play in the Super Bowl. Men are the only people who play. Sometimes the reporter on the sideline is a woman. And I’m sure someday soon a woman will be announcing the game or in the studio at halftime and another will be running the sidelines as a referee. But the players are all men, and that will not change. I really hope and pray that you will do something more important with your life than play a football game (or report on one or referee one).

Don’t be like the women you see. You will see women dancing on the sidelines of this football game, my love. They will not be wearing many clothes. They will be amazing athletes, maybe even as amazing as the men on the field. But their whole lives go into being beautiful, and that’s kinda sad. You’re way more important than just having smooth skin and showing it off. You’re a lot more valuable than a pretty face. The shape of your breasts and butt and your ability to dance don’t give you your worth as a person. No matter how gorgeous you are when you grow up—and I have no doubt that will be really, really beautiful, since you already are—please know that your mind and your soul matter more.

There are a lot of men you should avoid. There will be some really funny and cool ads on during the Super Bowl. We’ll laugh and look at each other with our mouths wide open. But commercials sometimes kind of lie, saying things that are not true. I’ve heard about the ads that are going to air tonight—GoDaddy, Kia, Doritos, and the rest. They show women mostly naked. They do this because they think men really want to see that and that men are dumb enough to buy something because a mostly-naked woman was in an ad. A good man decides to really love one woman, not just her body and not lots of women. That’s the kind of man that I hope falls deeply in love with you one day. I love your mom and don’t look at other women naked. And trust me, you don’t ever want to be with a man who just wants to see other women naked.

You can always talk to me. This is some big stuff. You can ask me anything, and I will always make time for you. You’re the best.

Love,
Daddy

What else would you say to girls and young women about the messages around the Super Bowl? Leave a comment below.

This was first posted at Executing Ideas.

Adam Jeske has served in Nicaragua, China, and South Africa and regularly contributes to Relevant. With his wife, Christine Jeske, he has written This Ordinary Adventure: Settling Down Without Settling. He blogstweets, and serves as the Associate Director of Communications for InterVarsity.

You might also be interested in The Dark Side of the Super Bowl.

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