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Wanted: Older Women to Teach Virtuous Womanhood

Updated on March 31, 2017
MsDora profile image

MsDora, Certified Christian Counselor, has spent over 20 years empowering young and adult women to pursue positive, productive womanhood.

Painted by Carl Larsson
Painted by Carl Larsson | Source

On July 26, 2013 the top three Google searches about older women were:

  • older women young men (90,500)
  • hairstyles for older women (60,500)
  • hot older women (33,100)

Almost four years later (March 22, 2017), older women young men is still in the top three.

While none of these phrases describe illegal activities for or with older women, it is obvious that the searches have nothing to do with older women teaching virtuous womanhood to younger women (or younger men).

For the purpose of this article the definition of “older woman” is any adult woman (relative, teacher, neighbor). They teach whether or not they are aware; but it would make such a difference if they intentionally set out to instill seeds of decent, productive womanhood in their protégées.

Guide older women into lives of reverence so they end up as . . . models of goodness.

By looking at them, the younger women will know how to love their husbands and children, be virtuous and pure, keep a good house, be good wives.

— Titus 2: 3-5 MSG

What Do They Have to Teach?

Even though women today have assumed corporate and political roles, they are still the mothers, the women of the house, the comforters and nurturers. Sad to say, many of them are better prepared for their assignments in the outside world, than for their in-home roles.

Older women are needed to model the importance of womanhood responsibilities--as listed in the quote above.

  • Virtue and Purity
  • Good Housekeeping
  • Marriage
  • Love for Family

Men can share these responsibilities, but mature women are obligated to teach younger women.

Photographed by Carl Van Vechten
Photographed by Carl Van Vechten | Source

Virtue and Purity

There are many resources for teaching purity, but our main focus is teaching by example—modeling.

Purity is only one foundational virtue. Self-worth, purpose, honesty and obedience are just as essential, and will actually feed their motivation to live pure. Older women model these principles in:

  • conversation
  • deportment
  • relationships
  • media choices

The young women are watching, and if by chance they ask questions, they expect that the answers will correspond with the respondents' actions.

The most effective models are those who confess that the walk down the moral runway is a not a breeze; that there are struggles. They are expected to model reality.

Good HouseKeeping

Photo by Alexey Novitsky
Photo by Alexey Novitsky | Source
Photo by George Hodan
Photo by George Hodan | Source
Photo by Donna Cosmato
Photo by Donna Cosmato | Source

Young women and men can hardly develop attitudes and habits they have never seen. They learn first by watching and then by practicing.

Here are some basic housekeeping habits which little girls (and boys) can learn by imitating older women:

  • House Cleaning

Have little girls start as early as possible to help make the beds, throw soiled clothes in the hamper, clear the dining table, keep household items in their assigned places.

  • Shopping

They can help make the shopping list, discuss spending limits, figure out bargains at the store. The mathematicians can take along a calculator.

  • Cooking

The recipe can be an exercise in reading and follow instructions, calculating measurements and discussing nutrients, until they are capable of cooking by themselves.

  • Bill Payments

Keeping out the debt is an important household duty. Discuss the bill for the cell phone (or other gadgets), compare monthly usages and cost of utilities.

  • Crafts

Compare purchasing costs with saving costs on do-it-yourself projects like making birthday and Christmas gifts. Sewing and knitting are very essential crafts in housekeeping.

If encouraged to be consistent in what they learn, and to household areas in which they show keen interest, good housekeeping can become a habit.

Marriage

Marriage needs to be introduced to young women and men as a union of husband and wife who include God as their spiritual foundation and help. Older women are needed to model respect for their men and their marriage.

Television and other media sources downplay the importance of marriage. Divorces happen without good reason. Men are disrespected by rude children and condescending wives. Young women need live models of older women who confront marriage problems with a sense of commitment and who demonstrate that marriage vows hold precedence over selfish decisions. They learn to support, cooperate with, be loyal to their men by watching the model.

Love for Husband

Factors Affecting the Need for Mentoring by Older Women

  • Older women are often more capable than even the ministers in instructing the young women. - Matthew Henry's Whole Bible Commentary
  • Daughters of single mothers are 53% more likely to marry as teenagers, 111% more likely to have children as teenagers, 164% more likely to have a premarital birth and 92% more likely to dissolve their own marriages. - Insight News
  • When we support the growth and empowerment of women and girls, we raise the quality of life for everyone. - Huffington Post

Young women raised with single mothers receive no in-home preparatory training for becoming wives, let alone for loving their husbands. Yet, they have the same right to learn as those raised in two-parent homes with the advantage of learning by watching.

Here is an important area where older married women are needed to model the good-wife role to their own children as well as to all young women in their sphere of influence. The key ingredients are love and respect.

Here are a few examples of simple love expressions which may go a long way in influencing young women who see them:

  • affectionate greeting when husband arrives or departs
  • compliments which boost his self-worth
  • a show of interest in what he's doing or has done
  • congratulations on jobs well done
  • "thank you" when he gives a compliment or performs a service
  • random "I love you" just because
  • expressions of love and respect in his absence
  • pledge of support when he faces opposition
  • consultation before major decisions
  • praying together

Young women view these gestures as special attempts to make the relationship meaningful and happy. They show that love and romance belong in marriage, beyond dating and courtship.

Love for Children

-- Modeling Awareness Poll --

How much of your attitude and behavior is influenced by your awareness that a young man or woman is learning from you?

See results

Children Learn What They Live is the title of Dorothy Law Nolte's poem in which she writes:

If children live with praise, they learn appreciation.
If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.

Older women who make it a habit to commend and empower younger women are performing a meaningful service in the moment, as well as planting seeds which will blossom in later years.

Single women do well in encouraging their daughters to love their fathers. Even when the fathers prove difficult to love, it helps to maintain respect. The statistics which show fatherless daughters at a social and moral disadvantage do not usually include young women who experience the love and guidance of older women who are wise and conscientious.

Young women learn to love their children to the extent that they are loved. Let there be no shortage in the love they receive from the older women.

© 2013 Dora Isaac Weithers

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    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I love the quote by Bethune. What a great message in this hub, Dora! I have great respect for those who are older than I am, as I was raised to believe there is great wisdom to be learned from them. Thank you for reinforcing this point.

      blessings always

      bill

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      This is so true MsDora, the way we teach our children is so important, and as the elder woman they should have this role so that the next generation learn in a proper way, our children copy us, its as simple as that, wonderful hub, voted up and shared! nell

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Bill, glad you like the message. I also have great respect for the wisdom of the elderly. Thanks for your comment.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Nell, it's as simple as that. We, the older women just have to be consistent at it. Thanks for your input.

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      Vickiw 3 years ago

      This is so important MsDora. In my community the government has just awarded a large grant for senior citizens to teach their skills to younger people. The older people have proper training in teaching,and it is a very exciting project. The classes, in all kinds of skills are rapidly filling up!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Yes, let there be no shortage in the love they receive! Beautiful truths here. Thank you for this powerful message, dearest MsDora.

      Voted up ++++ and sharing

      God bless you. In His Love, Faith Reaper

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Vicki, I applaud your community. So encouraging to hear that the young people are taking advantage. Thank you for sharing.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Thank you, Faith Reaper always being so encouraging. Have a great week!

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 3 years ago from london

      Older women, indeed men too, act like pioneers and stand as beacons before us. They point the way by virtue of their own lives. Great article for us to remember that they can commend and empower us younger souls.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Manatita, your point well presented and very much appreciated. Reminds me of the song lyrics, "May those who come behind us, find us faithful."

    • profile image

      SparrowMinistries 3 years ago

      Beautiful hub, MsDora. One thing I take issue with in churches is how they tend to segregate fellowship groups by age and marital status. The young singles groups in churches are not much different than the bar scene with Christian trappings. the over fifty crowds have their own groups and activities, and young marrieds are separated from those older marrieds who can guide them. Then they try to hold "classes" to teach marriage skills and other important life lessons-but people do not learn that way. We learn by rubbing shoulders with other people. We become like who we spend most of our time with. So young people in youth and young adult groups cannot really grow. Thank you for sharing these ideas. I hope it catches on. We need it. God bless you!

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      SparrowMinistries, I totally agree with: "We learn by rubbing shoulders with other people." In the case of older women mentoring the young, that's basically all we need. Thanks for your input.

    • Michele Travis profile image

      Michele Travis 3 years ago from U.S.A. Ohio

      Wonderful hub MsDora, very important information for women who are raising their children. Even when they are busy from working, it is still important to make sure your children are not ignored, or letting them do what ever they want. Teach them gently, but do teach them.

      Thank you for writing this.

      Voted up.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Michele. No role is more important than training the children. We think alike on this.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton

      I thought perhaps this was going to have a hint of sadness... saying goodbye to all the older women that have brightened my life. But here you share the fact that with age comes experience.. you learn from these gentle women.. almost angelic.. yeah voted awesome :)

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Frank, is it good or bad that you were surprised? Thanks for the "almost angelic" response. Coming from you, it's meaningful.

    • Angela Blair profile image

      Angela Blair 3 years ago from Central Texas

      Beautiful Hub with excellent advice/suggestions -- recalling the old song "Teach the Children Well" -- so true, so true. Best/Sis

    • denise.w.anderson profile image

      Denise W Anderson 3 years ago from Bismarck, North Dakota

      I remember when, as a young mother, I looked up to the older women in my life as mentors. Now that I am an "empty nester," it has come to my attention that others look up to me in the same way. I notice it most when younger women with small children feel uncomfortable around me if their children are misbehaving. I try to assure them that they are doing a good job as parents, and that I remember how difficult it was. This seems to help them to relax, and have more confidence in that role. Your advice to love these women is very timely for me at this point in my life.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Angela, good lyrics. "Teach your children what you believe in." Thank you for your input.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Denise, you've come full circle. Good to know that you are at your post of productive womanhood, and those you mentor will copy you. Cheers!

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 3 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      Hi MsDora,

      I have to say (not being a woman or a mother) there is so much wisdom in this hub. So much we need to be aware of and apply. Reading this hub and applying it are two different things. You're responsible for the write and we're responsible for the read and application. Thanks so much for this.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Lifegate, thanks for the observation. We can only pray that the application follows.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      This is so very true and older women must realise that consciously or not they are setting an example to the younger women by their actions. So, they'd rather be good models.

      Voted up and useful.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Rajan. What a difference it would make if the older women were always conscious of their responsibility.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Looking for Older Women to Model Goodness such a thoughtful hub and so well explained. Informative, useful, and well approached.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      DDE, thank you for your kind comments! This is a matter I'm very passionate about.

    • Tonipet profile image

      Tonette Fornillos 3 years ago from The City of Generals

      Oh this is beautiful! Truly older women possess a rich source of goodness that are needed to model these days. Young women need live models of older women who confront marriage problems with a sense of commitment - so true, very true.

      Great hub, loved reading it... I am definitely sharing! Thank you and happy weekend MsDora:=) -Tonette

    • Lastheart profile image

      Maria Magdalena Ruiz O'Farrill 3 years ago from Borikén the great land of the valiant and noble Lord

      Well done MsDora very good job! Very necessary to let know the quality in us. I want to be a good model for anyone that stands by me, because I know that my Creator, Lord and Savior ought to be honor from my acts and thoughts.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Tonipet, glad we agree on the importance of older women models for the younger generation. Thanks for your support!

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Lastheart, you and I both want to be good models. In our surrender to God, He will show us how and make us able. Thank you for your input.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Parent control is very important including discipline after all it all starts at home. Informative, helpful and most useful to all readers indeed.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      DDE, thank you for your kind comment. So much needs to happen at home.

    • skye2day profile image

      skye2day 3 years ago from Rocky Mountains

      Ms Dora Blessings dear sister. Another fantastic writing. Too bad there is not more search for woman of wisdom. Reminds me of proverbs. Teach a child in the way they should go and they will not depart from it. I think n these days there are many woman that are older but do not know Christ. It is unfortunate. Their children grow up and have no solid foundation. A house will stand on solid foundation amen. There is good news because no matter the age Jesus will change a heart and life will change. My parents were strict and at the time I did not like it one bit but they taught us to respect others and to have dignity in our home. I knew about God. I did not know Him but I am grateful I knew of Him. God bless you precious child of God for writing a powerful hub of love. I hope many come to read. Hugs Galore my dear sister. Skye

      voted and shared

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Skye, thank you for your input on this topic. The Bible requires, and the world needs older women to train the younger women. My passion is to be one of those older women. I appreciate your encouragement.

    • Mekenzie profile image

      Susan Ream 3 years ago from Michigan

      MsDora, a beautiful hub on a very important topic. Older women do model, whether it be for good or evil.

      Our society often ignores the elderly where other societies honor their elders and respect the wisdom they have acquired throughout their years.

      I hope people find your hub and that it makes a difference. We need to think about the obligation that the older has to the younger generation. It's crucial!!

      Thanks! Voted Up and shared.

      Mekenzie

    • RonElFran profile image

      Ronald E. Franklin 3 years ago from Mechanicsburg, PA

      Great subject matter, MsDora! And great practical application. My wife loves to teach about the Titus 2 woman. I'm going to pass this on to her.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Mekenzie, modeling goodness to the younger women is the responsibility of every godly woman. I wish like you that we take it seriously. Thanks for your input.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Ron, thank you. I commend your wife for the noble work she is doing. We need many more to join with us in modeling goodness to the younger women.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 3 years ago from Wales

      Very interesting and voted up for sure. Enjoy your day.

      Eddy.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Eiddwen, thank you. Enjoy your weekend.

    • DREAM ON profile image

      DREAM ON 3 years ago

      At a young age I knew the value of woman who has seen and grown through so many changes and remained loyal and true to herself and her family. I would sit with elderly people in my neighborhood and listen to what they know. So many others would be busy going here or there forgetting some day they to will get old. They to might not be able to get around and do all the things young people do. Respect and honor I give to those who take the time to share their wisdom and love.As much as they thanked me for stopping in and visiting them when very few did(including their own family)because they were all too busy. I am so happy and proud I did. They are the ones who I will always be grateful for.In my neighborhood there were not many elderly men. What a beautiful and moving hub.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Dream On, you are proof that there is a very positive result from the mentoring relationship of older women to the younger ones. Thank you for sharing.

    • skye2day profile image

      skye2day 3 years ago from Rocky Mountains

      MsDora. Just to add sister. You child of God are one of those wise woman. I know you touch so many hearts. Mine included. Keep going precious one. In Christ You will I know it. Phil 4:13

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Skye, thank you for the encouragement. You're an inspiration also. We learn from each other.

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      Natalie Frank 2 weeks ago

      Dora - I wish more people explored their values and made a point of sharing them long with and how they can benefit others. The implications of modeling these values is well thought out and presented. Thanks for a thought provoking article.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 2 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Natalie. All women (and men) are called to model life as it should be for the younger generation. If we all were conscious of this assignment, I guess we would do better.

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