1) A father is, essentially, a caveman hardwired to protect his family.
2) A father is, essentially, inclined to feel more protective of daughters.
3) A father is, essentially, inclined to protect family members who are hurt or weak or vulnerable.
4) A father is, essentially, hardwired to kill you with his bare hands if you even think to look at his disabled daughter the wrong way.
5) You'd better read #4 again, because he means it.
It is a strange feeling. The raging, Hulk-like rage that rises in one's brain if I get the sense that my daughter is being maligned in any way is, to put it mildly…scary. Tearing someone limb from limb tends to be frowned upon in our society, and I have no interest in rocking the boat.
I feel bad for my son. The poor guy makes a mistake and I pounce on him like any well-meaning father of a teenager. My daughter, on the other hand, most often gets a free pass. Parents of kids with extreme physical disabilities are thrilled at the idea of their child doing anything interesting.
"I'm sorry to call you," the police officer might say, "but your daughter hit a guy's car with her wheelchair."
"That's terrible," I might reply.
"It knocked the brake free."
"The car rolled out of the driveway, careened across traffic, and crashed through the front window of the orphanage."
Long pause by me. "I'm sorry that happened, officer," I reply, "but that's the single greatest thing I've ever heard."
What did you say to HER?