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It’s the age of girl power - with strong women like Beyonce and Malala as resilient forces shaping and changing our society.
We coin phrases like ‘girl boss’ and ‘like a girl’ to spread the love and support for other women of all ages around the world.
So how do we raise our girls to become strong, confident women? How do we empower them to break limits and to use their voice?
We raise them to believe that they can.
Fathers play a significant role in who their daughters become. What they teach, and how they treat their other relationships will shape the perspective and standards for their daughters. But with zero first hand experience on growing up as a girl, all dads are
faced with the challenge of continuing to be an effective parent as she gets older.
But, we're here to help - here are some tips for dads raising daughters
Let her know she is loved:
Studies show that a girls’ self esteem is directly impacted from the love she experiences with her father. Always remind your daughter through words and actions that she is unconditionally loved and that you’re always there for her.
Tell her she is beautiful AND smart:
Make sure you teach her that looks are not the only things that matter and shouldn’t be the only thing she is complimented on. Let her know that she is beautiful, but let her know that her personality and her mind is beautiful more often. Teaching her to value other aspects of who she is will help her develop self-love and to not judge or value herself or others based on their looks.
Don’t always treat her like Daddy’s Little Girl:
Let her play in the mud. Show your daughter that she is resilient and independent by treating her that way. Encourage her to speak up for herself and to make her own decisions so she can solve her own problems instead of always looking to you to solve them for her. Teaching her to overcome life’s obstacles will empower her to overcome challenges in her future.
Teach her to be strong:
Let your daughter know the benefits of having a strong body and express your appreciation for women who are strong and healthy, not just women who appeal to the social standards of beauty. Encourage her to participate in sports and self defense; if she believes that she is strong, smart and confident, she will ultimately become those things.
Break the stereotype:
Don’t limit your daughter’s dreams based on gender stereotypes or social norms. Expose her to positive female role models and individuals who shape society and have broken their stereotypes. Teach her how to be handy and self-reliant.
Model respect for all women:
The way that you treat and respect women and the way you interact with her mother will impact the way your daughter views herself and how she should be treated by men. You are the standard in which she will view all men, so show her that respect and equality among men and women is a norm. Set the bar high, so that she will seek the same qualities in her future partner.
Get to know her!
Work on clearly communicating with your daughter at every age, especially as she gets older. Seize
the opportunity to always talk with your daughter, keeping your ego and over protective instincts out
of the picture. Be open minded with her so that she continues to share with you and genuinely
indulge her imagination and be interested in what she’s interested in.