Although, not able to fly faster than a speeding bullet, or leap tall buildings in a single bound, the power and influence of a father in the life of a child can far exceed what any Super Hero could ever accomplish. If you don’t believe me, just ask my 5 year-old daughter about her Dad. She will tell you that he is the strongest, smartest, greatest man in the world. In her eyes and her heart, he is King.
Dads are powerful role models and teachers, and are often instrumental in drawing a blueprint in the hearts and minds of their daughters based on their involvement or lack there of. Several studies have suggested over the years, that how a young girl relates to her father can directly effect her behavior and shape the way she feels and interacts with men throughout her life.
According to a survey conducted by The National PTA, there are numerous benefits of a father daughter bond, including:
I recognize what some describe as a “Dad-shaped hole” in the hearts hundreds of girls I have worked with over the years. The absence of a father is sometimes identified through anger, depression and low-self esteem. But I have also seen the tremendous impact an active father or other male role model can make in the life of a girl.
Many fathers get overwhelmed at the physical and emotional changes that take place in the bodies of minds of girls, and some become intimidated or down right freaked out. But it’s especially important during the hormonal challenges of adolescents, that girls receive the guidance, encouragement and support of a father.
I am often asked, “What happens if the biological father is not in the home”? Well fortunately, all is not loss. Fathers who are absent from the home, still have a responsibility to be active in their child’s life and must make their child their priority by spending quality time on a consistent basis. Step-fathers, uncles, big brothers or family friends can also step in to provide consistent support for those whose fathers are not present.
This month, we salute the men who have been a super hero in the lives of their little girls. The men who have worked hard to provide, those who have sat on the side-lines during games, those who have stayed up late night providing help with homework and projects, and those who lend an ear and know just what to say. Thank you Dads for all you do and for setting the high standards you have and treating your daughter like the true Princess she is.
Nicole Steele is President of GEM Makers, LLC and Executive Director of Diamond In The Rough a faith-based leadership program that provides group mentoring, life skills training and career coaching to girls ages 4-18. For more information on Diamond In The Rough visit www.ditr.org or call (678) 376-9676.
Copyright 2016, Nicole Steele and GEM Makers LLC. Used with permission.