How can fathers engage in the lives of their daughters?
The following are some excellent tips from the National Center for Fathering:
1. Involvement – Children need active participation in their lives. Time is more valuable to them than money. Schedule a time to meet regularly with your child, and spend time doing something children enjoy.
2. Consistency – Keep your word at all costs. Be consistent at home. Let your child know what you expect and what to expect from you.
3. Awareness – Get to know your child and their close friends. Become an expert on your child. Schedule time to talk alone, because each child has different needs. Remember, during these times of exchange, allow them to express themselves.
4. Nurturing – Children need affirmation. Praise them, and let them know you love them unconditionally.
The father/daughter relationship plays an integral role in a young girl’s life. This relationship will give her the self-confidence to deal with challenging issues such as premarital sex, drugs and boyfriends. Without an engaged relationship with her father, many girls float through life looking for someone to fill that void.
Research shows that young girls who grow up without a relationship with their father are at greater risk of engaging in premarital sex, experiencing problems in school, experiencing depression and anxiety, and abusing drugs and alcohol.
This father/daughter bond is even more important when the father and daughter do not live in the same household.
Keep in mind that little things can mean a lot to daughters. Small traditions such as weekly phone calls or conversations, writing notes to each other, or a father/daughter date can go a long way in strengthening that special bond.