We’re One Weird Family

weird family

Maybe it’s Mother’s Day that has brought about our most recent conversations.  I’m really not sure.

Lately it has been comical to hear my girls talk about awkward moments due to the loss of their mom.

When Michelle was riding with a friend and her mother, something was said about moms helping at school for some project.  The friend quickly reprimanded her mother for saying the “m” word in front of Michelle.

“It’s OK,” Michelle assured her.  “You can talk about mothers with me in the car.  It doesn’t bother me.”

Stephanie then shared the time last summer at camp where they were paired with a peer for prayer time before bed.

“The girl got on my bed and said, ‘My friend’s mom has cancer.  Can you IMAGINE your mom having cancer?’”

“Well actually…”

DJ was recognized at the Senior Salute, an end of year assembly for the National Charity League.  It’s a Mother/Daughter service club that Lisa started with her six years ago.  Each girl stood on stage with their mom and a short speech was given about their relationship and their work together over the past few years.  DJ decided she’d be recognized with another friend whose mother died a year or so after Lisa.  Pretty good strategy for what could have been a fairly awkward situation.

Last Tuesday Michelle asked me if dogs had periods.

To be perfectly honest, I had to think a minute.  We don’t have dogs, and I don’t recall ever seeing a doggie tampon (This is yet another reason not to have a pet).

I assured her they must and then DJ chimed in saying indeed they did and that there were diapers that could be purchased for that time of the month.

Apparently Michelle went to school and announced her findings to her girlfriends.  When she returned home that afternoon, she said, “Kimmy can’t believe I asked you if dogs had periods.” I asked her why Kimmy thought that was so odd.  “Kimmy said it is weird that I ask my DAD questions like that.”  We laughed.  I suppose she could have called the vet.

Last week we also talked about girls who are “loose in the booty” as my oldest kid describes them and why girls might be prone to be boy crazy.  We talked about self-esteem and how critical that it come from within and not from some shady dude who pays you a little attention.

The week before we chatted about Michelle’s class field trip to the Poe Center where they got about 75% of the sex talk.  I filled her in on the rest.  Stephanie told her at the Poe Center she was going to have to stand up in front of the group and talk about girls’ breasts.  “They actually call them breasts.  I hate it when they call them that.  They’re boobs.  Old ladies have breasts.”  Thankfully, Michelle was spared the chest chat.

I realize our family is a bit odd, maybe more open than others.  But I’m gonna take that as a win as we celebrate our sixth motherless Mother’s Day.

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  1. HaHa. Not sure sure how odd some of this is. We have six daughters and the topics they bring up astound me most of the time! I try my best to take on the ‘idiot’ role – it is not a stretch for me!

  2. Mom

     /  May 13, 2015

    Your openness with these girls has made the difference. Your role has been different from many fathers. It’s good that you have been able to step in and learn how to deal with these female learning experiences. The girls would have been in deep trouble if you had backed away like some dads I have heard about in this same situation. The fact that you talk about Lisa as readily as you do has made a world of difference in these girls’ lives. They have come through it with an amazing attitude and more self assurance than many girls their age have. When you’re counting the mistakes you THINK you have made, give this a big 10 pointer. This is dealing with the girls’ core…the part of her that guides her through deep waters. Good job with a difficult task.

  3. That is most definitely a win!

  4. Kathy

     /  May 13, 2015

    Most definitely a win win situation! And I can see where you get your heart and guts, from your mother, what a smart woman! Your girls are lucky!

  5. I think your efforts are going beyond just being open with your family. You’re working to closing the gender gap. A service to the next generation. I love that you are available to talk to your girls about anything regardless of whether your a mom or dad. I don’t think your family is weird, I think you folks are ahead of your time.

    • Danny Tanner

       /  May 16, 2015

      Oh – I like that! Not weird, just progressive.

  6. Nice job, daddy. Sounds like you’ve done a marvelous job with them.

  7. gazette0608

     /  May 14, 2015


  8. This is my first time coming across you page and I found this a very compelling post. I love the picture of your family and I’m sure due to your circumstances, you’ve even grown closer together as a unit. I’m looking forward to exploring your blog further.

    P.S. We had 2 dogs growing up that my aunt had us adopt. The whole period thing never came up because they were spayed. However, I moved in with a roommate and she said, oh it’s time to put a diaper on Phoebe (her dog) and I was shocked. What? I was 26 and never really thought it through… everyone I knew always had their pets spayed/neutered immediately. (so don’t feel odd about that)

    And glad to see that your girls can talk to you about everything. 🙂

    • Danny Tanner

       /  May 16, 2015

      Glad you’re joining us! I’m glad that I’m not the only dog period novice.

      • Education happens our entire lives, right? We should be striving to learn something new every day… 🙂 What exactly that the new thing is… well, that can be interesting. Hahahah

  9. Great post, I can relate in so many ways. My mom passed away from cancer when I was a young teen and one of the most awkward moments of the “mom” questions for me was in college. I was in a group project meeting and had recently gotten engaged…one female team member gasped and asked in front of the group “And isn’t your mother driving you NUTS with all of this wedding planning?” — I think her embarrassment at realizing I didn’t have a mom to drive me nuts was way worse than how her question could have made me feel!

  10. Reblogged this on One Good Old Girl and commented:
    This is an amazing post – truly inspirational. I am encouraged to see others sharing their own journeys through grief and how they manage to come through the other side.


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