When I found out I was going to be a dad to a little girl who would someday grow up to be a woman, I knew it was up to me to teach her the way of the world. From various experiences with male friends, I knew women don’t always have the easiest time with the opposite sex. This awareness motivated me to open my little girl’s eyes up to many things that others may be naïve about.
Through the years, I’ve seen other dads struggle with their daughters. They avoid certain topics, and become angry over situations they knew would eventually come up in their life. Due to this response, many of the men I’ve spoken to don’t have the relationship they wished for with their daughters. That’s what has motivated me to write this article.
#1: We Are The Examples For How Men Should Treat Women
Our daughters won’t know how men should treat them unless we show them. This means that we should always be hypervigilant about how we praise them. While it’s okay to say that they are beautiful, it’s good to focus on how smart they are, too.
#2: Praise Their Beauty AND Their Brains
It can be easy to tell our daughters how beautiful they are every day. However, beauty isn’t the most important part of our daughters. We know that, and we need them to know that.
Identifying our daughters’ strengths academically, socially, etc. will increase their self-esteem and confidence, so they can someday praise themselves. It will also help them accept compliments from others as they move on through life.
#3: Teach Them That They Can Do Anything With Hard Work
Many women believe their beauty is what gets them to where they are in life. While this can be true, as we all know, it’s also important for them to understand to get far in life they need to work hard. Working hard should be the focus on your lessons. Women need to know they can do anything in life, as long as they work hard for it. This includes when they are competing against men in the workforce.
#4: Teach Them To Value Their Personality
Our society is focused on beauty. As men, we know a woman can be drop dead gorgeous, but if she doesn’t communicate on the same level as us, that beauty isn’t so great anymore. Our daughters need to know that, so they understand men aren’t just going to base their love for them on their beauty, but on the brains and personality.
#5: Show Them What Love Should Look Like
Boys and then men will be mean to our daughters someday. We need to love our daughters and remind them that not all men are jerks. We need to represent the good men in this world, and assure them that they just need to find them.
I hope these lessons will help you with your daughter, as you navigate this crazy, but rewarding role of dad. Together, we can help our daughters understand that they are beautiful no matter what they look like on the outside.
Tyler Jacobson is a husband, father, freelance writer and outreach specialist with experience with organizations that help troubled teens and parents. His areas of focus include: parenting, social media, addiction, mental illness, and issues facing teenagers today. Follow Tyler on: Twitter | Linkedin