Blessed with a daughter, my partner and I have had some heated debates about his attitudes towards her becoming a teenager – particularly the desire to protect her at any cost. There’s a reason boys never want to leave home and girls can’t get away quick enough. So as someone raised by a Baptist Minister who tried very hard to keep me on the straight and narrow (but eventually conceded that as long as my man was kind and loved God he’d won the battle) here are my 10 tips for Dads raising daughters.
1. Your little girl will become a woman. It’s inevitable and your job is not to protect her but to teach her to be a warrior. After all you don’t want her to wilt when some boy crosses the line but to kick ass.
2. Make damn well sure she knows that there is nothing that being a girl stops her from doing.
3. Tell her she is beautiful inside and out. A lot. You can’t say it enough.
4. Help her see the myriad of ways she is precious. This includes her body, her mind, her heart and her life. This matters when it comes to the choices she will make.
5. Accept she is not perfect and that her imperfections will teach her the biggest lessons.
6. Let her go out and make mistakes but make sure you are there every single time to hold her in your arms, kiss her head and tell her it will be alright.
7. Admit you get it wrong. There is no shame in saying sorry. She’ll respect you more for it.
8. Your money is nothing but little gifts given with thought…a note, a book, a music track…they’re everything.
9. If it’s still in your power then love her mother. Remember she will look for a man who loved like you.
10. Laugh a lot. That’s what she’ll remember when you’re gone. Laughing at the same stupid jokes, singing old songs, holding hands. ￼
Written by Lauren Seager-Smith – daughter, mum & CEO of Kidscape