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Dear Dads – Advice From A Daughter

by Nessa Shera
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One day your little girl is going to grow up, and she won’t believe boys have cooties anymore. She’s going to experience changes physically, spiritually, and emotionally. She’s going to stare at a particular guy and start blushing, she’ll rant to her friends about how cute he is, and just like that she’ll experience her first crush. Without the proper guidance ‘young love’, particularly during adolescent times can result into disastrous consequences, as I’ve observed with several peers as I’ve grown. So as a father what’s your role in this? After all, that’s why mothers are there, to have ‘the talk’ concerning all those matters that would seem awkward for you to discuss.

However she’s still your daughter. While you’d rather leave the girls at home to discuss ‘female matters’, you can still guide your daughter using other methods;

Pamper Her at Times/Show her What She Deserves; I saw this meme that showed a father opening the car door for his little daughter, below it mentioned ‘I need to instill standards into her while she’s still young, so she understands what she deserves when she grows up’. The little things like treating her, taking her out, buying her a dress, or even opening a door for her sometimes, instills a sort of criteria to expect from other men in future. She’ll look at what you’ve done as a reference.  It starts from home. Every father wants their daughter to end up with a good man, that’ll take care of her. However to do this, you need to be the kind of man she’ll want to look for in elsewhere.

After an Argument, Apologize to Her and Make Up; while you may be the father and hence the head of the household, it’s always good to humble yourself and apologize and resolve issues with your daughter where there is conflict. This should start from the smallest things, such as arguing about buying her a toy as a child. Particularly during instances where she is not on the wrong, this will show her that it’s not always her fault during a crisis, an element that affects women in several failing relationships. Eg. if there’s not enough money to buy a toy, don’t tell her she’s immature for complaining, sit her down, let her know of the current issue, and negotiate.

Invite Her Boyfriends Home; while you may make the rules, claiming that she isn’t allowed to get a boyfriend until she moves out of her house is a bit unrealistic. She’ll probably start developing interest early during her adolescent years. You’d rather be in the know, than her hiding any potential relationships she may be having. This way you can invite her boyfriends over for lunch so you could probably get to know them better, and continue to advise her on the way forward.

Compliment and encourage her; compliment her when she’s looking good and even when she isn’t, but more than that, encourage her when she’s doing something to benefit herself. Whether it’s joining a sports club, exceeding academically, or growing financially, always ensure that you’re doing your best to support her. This may help her self-esteem more than you know, and she’ll always be ensured of a father to encourage her. This way she’ll feel more confident and assured of herself, which is crucial. Self-love and assurance is important for anyone entering a relationship.

Fathers do your part in ensuring that your daughter understands what to look for in a man. Teach her to work for herself, as well as love herself. You’re the first man in her life, as Robert Orben says, “be good to your daughters. You are the god and the weight of her world”.

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