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Dads and Daughters: A Magic Weapon Against Low Self-Esteem

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My husband is a fantastic dad. I mean, he's great at a lot of things, but he's really, really great at being a dad. I watch how he and Kiddo interact, and it is different than the way she and I have a relationship. The big things are the same, but it is a different dynamic, a different set-up - as it should be.

When it comes to fathers and daughters, there is a huge opportunity to impact your child in such a positive way (and let's be clear, when I use "father" it can mean a male in a variety of shapes and sizes and relationships -- an uncle or a grandfather or godfather or your best male bud who comes to every family event). Having a dad who is involved with your daughter's life gives her a much needed boost in the self-esteem department, Studies have shown that when a girl has a strong tie to her father, she is less likely to be depressed or use drugs and more likely to excel in school and go to college.

We all probably have great guys in our lives that are impacting our little girls. If your guy needs some help in what to do to make that bridge stronger and what to say to really boost her confidence, share some of these tips with him:

-- Set good examples of healthy relationships. Your daughter is watching how her dad treats her mom and other women and how he behaves in general. What he does, how he acts, his priorities, his choices will all shape with whom and how she chooses to have relationships in the future. If she sees him treat women with respect, it can resonate that she deserves respect as well, and that is a huge layer in that self-confidence foundation.

-- Make spending time together a priority. It really doesn't matter what they do together, but have her father sharing quality time, listening, talking and just being with her. That time spent is priceless.

-- Remember to praise. Have Dad tell your daughter how much he loves her sense of humor, how she rocks on spelling, how her kindness is beautiful - hearing it from Dad enforces that she is valued for something other than looks, which is essential to build a strong girl.

-- Have him help with social situations. Sometimes, talking it out with Dad about a hard social issue, like dealing with mean girls or how to resolve a tricky boyfriend problem is much better than you dealing with it. Hearing a different side, maybe having him help her see she needs to be more assertive or that he believes in her feelings is a big step in recognizing she is worthy and builds that self-esteem.

-- Share a hobby.  Jigsaw puzzles or jogging, playing chess or having a daddy-daughter book club, have her dad approach your daughter with an idea that they do it regularly, together. He puts it in his Google calendar, it is a standing date.

-- Teach her a skill that her mom can't. Maybe it's how to use a lawn mower or how to really throw that football or how to play poker, teach her a skill that not only her mom can't teach her, but that gives her a little bit of oomph in the strength department. Not muscle strength, but ability strength, something she can walk around confident knowing that she knows how to do something special.

-- Have Dad go shopping sometime. When she gets older and goes clothes shopping, have Dad go. The dynamic will be different, and hearing what he thinks about fashion and choosing clothes is vital for her. A whole new dialogue on how clothes look to a guy will be had.

What is the best thing your husband or partner does with your daughter? Share your thoughts on dads and daughters with us!

ŠiStockphoto.com/kali9

by on Jul. 11, 2012 at 12:00 AM
Replies (21-30):
PinkButterfly66
by on Jul. 11, 2012 at 8:09 PM
1 mom liked this

When my daughter was little, I was all business giving her a bath.  I am a stay at home mom so at the end of the day, bath meant one step closer to bed.  With her dad, it was play time.  They had a blast.  They'd make up silly bath games... bocci egg was a big hit (with plastic easter eggs).  They'd take the foam letters and make boats.  They'd sing silly songs too.   Bath time with dad would take an hour.  The bathroom rug would be wet and so would my husband, but she's 14 and still remembers bathtime with dad.  He's musical and a geek so she listens to music with him and they play freeze tag Friday Medal of Honor.  

SlightlyPerfect
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It's about that time...
Today at 2:13 PM
by on Jul. 11, 2012 at 8:11 PM

My husband is the same way! They have so much fun together playing. Not me. Like you (and my mom), I'm all business. In. Out. Bed. She has a blast with him, and it gives me some down time (like right now!).

I think his dad gave the boys baths all the time (DH has 5 brothers), so it was always fun time in order to keep them organized and under control.

Quoting PinkButterfly66:

When my daughter was little, I was all business giving her a bath.  I am a stay at home mom so at the end of the day, bath meant one step closer to bed.  With her dad, it was play time.  They had a blast.  They'd make up silly bath games... bocci egg was a big hit (with plastic easter eggs).  They'd take the foam letters and make boats.  They'd sing silly songs too.   Bath time with dad would take an hour.  The bathroom rug would be wet and so would my husband, but she's 14 and still remembers bathtime with dad.  He's musical and a geek so she listens to music with him and they play freeze tag Friday Medal of Honor.  


slightlyperfect

Bmat
by Member on Jul. 11, 2012 at 8:16 PM

I only had boys, but I see my sons treat their daughters with great consideration.

Madelaine
by Bronze Member on Jul. 11, 2012 at 8:41 PM

Makes them both feel special and important. 

Charizma77
by Carissa on Jul. 11, 2012 at 10:02 PM
My husband and daughter are very close. He takes her out for pancake breakfast once a month. He plays dolls with her, makes up stories to tell her and so much more!
AzariahsMother
by on Jul. 11, 2012 at 11:14 PM
They love to play video games together.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
SlightlyPerfect
Report
It's about that time...
Today at 2:13 PM
by on Jul. 12, 2012 at 7:56 AM

How old are your kids?

DH and DD (who is 3) will play Kinectimals and Kinect dancing games together as well as Rabbids for the Wii. (OMG, watching them dance together is hilarious. He's so awkward.)

But I'm thinking, as she gets older, which games would be appropriate for all of us to play together. Any suggestions?

Quoting AzariahsMother:

They love to play video games together.


slightlyperfect

grouchymama
by on Jul. 12, 2012 at 7:57 AM

bump

daerca574
by on Jul. 12, 2012 at 8:04 AM

 sometimes they go shopping together, or just go for a drive.  my daughter is 15 and would rather not hang with dad for the most part.  But they do little things together.  When she was younger they were inseperable.

Mrs.Andrews
by on Jul. 12, 2012 at 3:13 PM

He takes her out on dates. She is 3 and he recently took her to a movie for their date. 

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