What Dads Should Teach Their Daughters

What Dads Should Teach Their Daughters

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May 10, 2022

I speak to a lot of Dads, and I know that many Dads struggle with their relationship with their daughters.
They get stuck thinking winning is having a beautiful, popular, intelligent daughter. They withdraw from the
relationship as their little girl becomes a woman because they are uncomfortable with how to act. They
struggle with how to spend time with their daughters and what to talk about. They struggle with the
attitudes and drama and what is cool in today’s culture. What would 100% Dad have to say to his
daughters?

My love for you is not earned. You are my daughter. I love you as is. I love you if you are a super model. I
love you if you are a genius. I love you if you are popular. I love you if you are 400 lbs. I love you if you fail out
of school. I love you if you are a loner.

I might be disappointed in some of your decisions. I might get mad at you. But my love for you does not
change based on your actions or appearances. You do not need to “earn” my love.

I want you to be the best version of yourself and I will help you get there. I want you to be healthy, I want
you to have an education, I want you to be able to function in the world. It is my job to guide you in those
areas and bring out the best version of you. Never mistake my motivation to guide you as a requirement
for my approval and my love.

The last thing any dad wants for his daughter is to feel unloved or needing achievement or looks to be
loved. That’s how girls become women that are very damaged. That is the foundation of “daddy issues.” We
do not want our little girls going out into the world thinking they need to earn love from boys by having to look a certain way or by performing actions in exchange for love.

You are beautiful. Your beauty is just the surface. I’m proud of who you are. I’m proud of the woman you
are becoming. It’s easy for the world to see your beauty, your athleticism, your intelligence, and your
accomplishments. But I see the whole you. 

This is where dads need to dig deep and see who their daughter is as a person, and compliment those
characteristics. Here are some examples.

  •  I admire how much courage/bravery you demonstrate.
  • I admire how kind-hearted/considerate you are.
  • I’m amazed how compassionate/helpful you are to those in need.
  •  I love how adventurous/spontaneous/daring you are.
  • You are so creative/clever/inventive.
  •  I’m proud of how honest/truthful and open you are.
  •  Your leadership skills are really impressing me.
  •  You have become such an incredibly selfless, caring, loyal young woman, and I want you to
    know that I see that, and I am so incredibly proud of you.
  •  You are really becoming an independent, hard-working, responsible young lady, and I’m very
    impressed by your recent actions.
  •  I love how you are both incredibly self-confident and equally humble. It is quite remarkable who
    you are becoming.
  • You really are something special. I see how thoughtful and inquisitive you are.
  • You are such a fun-loving, happy, energetic, witty, cheerful girl. It fills my heart with joy when I see you this way!
  • You are such a friendly and amicable girl, yet so determined and ambitious. There’s nothing that can stop you from whatever you set your mind to.

There’s a million characteristics we can describe that go beyond the superficial. Characteristics that
make up who she is, her worth, and her soul. She deserves to know you see those things about her. Tell
her the truth. As you say them bring up examples that made you think that way. It powerful to not only
say these things but to back it up and validate it with an example you saw.

You have no limitations. If you want to be a scientist, go be a scientist. If you want to be a world traveler,
go be a world traveler. If you want to build something, go build it. If you want to stay home and raise a
family, then stay home and raise a family. You are not limited. You can be whatever you want to be. Just
do it because you want it, not because you are trying to please someone else.

In the world today, we admire and give attention to those that conquer and dominate. We admire the
billionaires, and rags to riches. We admire those that achieve fame and glory. While those are cool
stories, there is zero shame in living life away from the spotlight. There is no dignity lost in being selfless.
There’s nothing wrong with a life that is dedicated to helping others, to serving others.

If that’s a life as a nun, fine.

If that is a life serving mission trips or working in the clergy, fine.
If that’s a life as a stay-at-home mom raising a family, fine.
If that’s a life working in charities and nonprofits, fine.
Never mistake your calling for something that’s shameful just because the world like to see they shiny
objects. Have the confidence to know who you are and be proud of who you are. It may not be a life in
the spotlight but that does not mean it is not important.

The less fortunate need help from those willing to give help. The lost need help finding there way from
those that are willing to guide. Families need the love and support of a mom willing to raise a family.
There’s no shame in serving.

When it comes to Dads preparing for boys dating their daughters, there’s a few rules we should teach our daughters. One is we don’t need to start dating too early. Exclusive dating isolates kids and makes them less social, more likely to quit hobbies and interests, and more likely to dwell in drama as their world becomes more and more about this relationship instead of living life as a kid. The whole dating thing while young really robs them of the remaining years of enjoyable childhood. They are still immature and exclusive dating will rob them of their individuality as they conform to the relationship.

Rules like age restriction, what qualifies as a date, not being left alone in a house, car, or room with a
date, staying in public places, dating as a part of a group instead of 1 on 1, no sharing blankets, are all
types of things that should be mentioned before dating ages. We don’t want kids assuming they can do
things and then getting mad at us when we enforce rules we never told them about. It’s better to lay it
out early so they have an expectation and also a viable excuse from peer pressure.

Sex needs to be a discussion that is had around the puberty ages. Values, self-worth, etc. In our family
we prefer you wait until marriage. Restraint and self-control are very good life skills to have yourself and
good life skills to look for when you marry.

Asides from laying out our rules early and holding firm on our values and beliefs. I would want my
daughters to know this:

You are unique, special, and very important to me. Lots of boys are out there, and lots of boys will want
to date you. Right now, it is my job as Dad to protect you, provide for you, and be a good example for
you. As you are getting to these dating ages, I want you to know that not all boys are the same. Lots of
boys are horn dawgs and they simply want sex. They have no self-control, and they want to feel that
pleasure. They will say and do just about anything because teenagers have hormones, and sex is a very
very powerful force. It will be a powerful force in your marriage. There are a lot of physical reasons to
avoid sex. There are equally as many emotional and mental reasons. Sex is one of the most powerful
forces in the world and if you can show restraint and control you will be able to do anything in life.
Same goes for the type of boys you date. If they can exercise control and restraint, these are really good
characteristics to have. If they can’t, then these boys turn into men that are unfaithful and poor
providers because they will always jump at the shiny new thing and never commit to a long term plan.
When your dating boys I want you to look past what is cool today. I want you to look them and see who
they are as a person. What characteristics do they have that you like. What would make them a good
husband and a good father. Are they hard workers? Determined? Loyal? Responsible? Caring? Helpful?
What are their thoughts on Divorce? Marriage? Career? Money? Family? Religion?

Just as I see you for who you really are beyond the surface, that’s what I want for you to look for in these
boys. What kind of man are they becoming?

Dating is a chance to get to know someone. Not a faux marriage. Sex is not a requirement. Being
exclusive is not a requirement. Think of it like a 1950s movie of spending time together and getting to
know one another as individuals. Thinking about a long term perspective is going to eliminate many
problems down the road.

I am always here or you. I will always listen when you ask me to. I may not always understand what’s
going on but I will listen. I won’t interrupt or tell you what to do. I will just listen and be there for you.
Now, of course, should you want some advice, Dear ol’ Dad has plenty of that to dole out. The point is that I want you to know I’m always here for you even if it seems like I’m too busy or not interested. I’m always
interested in my little girl. Let’s always make time for a Dad/Daughter date. A Dad/Daughter trip.
Random drives where we just talk. Let’s exchange letters or emails. I’m always here for you. Even when
you try to push me away. Or you become too cool for dad. Or if we have different interests. Or if I get
busy. All you have to do is ask. And Ill do my best to always remember to ask you even if you keep
rejecting my offers!

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