It’s interesting sometimes, (in the saddest possible way,) how society will push and push terrible ideas upon us until their terribleness is so painfully obvious they have no choice but to start backing up on them. (At least a little.)
The whole needlessness of fathers has been just one example. Now I’m not suggesting that the feminist movement has given up altogether on the silly idea that fathers are unnecessary, and maybe even detrimental to the proper development of children, but they’ve had to at least acknowledge the possibility that fathers can be an asset in the home.
The statistics bear it out — kids need DADS just like they need moms. Fathers are vitally important to the healthy development of children.
And that doesn’t just mean boys! While the need for a father-figure in the life of a boy is probably stressed more often, there is no question the important role a father plays in the well-being of his daughters as well.
There are many things daughters need from their fathers, but these 5 might be the most important:
I have a dear friend who never knew a relationship with her father. When I asked her what she thinks she missed out on most by never having a dad in her life, physical affection was the first thing she said.
As women, touch is about love, reassurance, and protection. While physical affection certainly isn’t the only way of displaying those things, it’s a real, tangible, concrete way of doing so, and the confidence boost it can give a girl cannot be underestimated.
Affirmation of Love
This goes hand-in-hand with #1, but girls need assurance that they are loved. Saying it is important, of course, but proving it is even more so. A girl who knows she is cherished by a father will have a sense of self-worth that will lead her to make better choices and as she sets and reaches higher goals.
Verbal Affirmation of Worth
I think this is one of those things girls need to actually hear. Repeatedly.
Girls struggle, perhaps more than boys, with developing a positive self-image. While some people want to take the principle of self-worth to silly levels, like never allowing there to be winners and losers lest somebody’s self-esteem be damaged, at the same time it is ridiculous the way Hollywood and society at large pushes the idea that “beauty” and value are found in physical appearance.
Girls need to hear from a sincere father that they have tremendous value that transcends all their outward attributes. When a girl feels valued by her father, it will do more to build self-confidence than Hollywood’s best compliments ever could.
Strong Male Leadership
This was another point my friend was quick to mention. She longed for the strength of a father’s authority.
It seems almost counter-intuitive to what society tells us, but kids, girls in particular, don’t necessarily want to buck every authority in their lives! Granted, harsh, unreasonable restriction that isn’t coupled with love will often breed rebellion, but when a girl knows she is loved and is being protected, she cherishes a father’s direction and even the parameters he placed upon her.
I suppose the first four things I’ve mentioned all help provide a girl with one of the things she longs for most in the world — security. Girls need to feel secure in their father’s affection, his love, his protection, and his guidance. And her world is made all the more secure when she sees her father providing the same for siblings and her mother. When she can rely on him and trust in his stability, it provides a strong groundwork for the rest of her life and her eventual independence.
Father’s Day is this Sunday, June 19th! Make sure your husband knows how essential he is the life of your daughters!
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