Father-Daughter Bonding: The Secret to Building Your Daughter's Self-Esteem

Father-Daughter Bonding: The Secret to Building Your Daughter's Self-Esteem

Sam Ojong

Father Daughter Bonding

article on father daughter relationships

When it comes to raising daughters, many dads feel like they have their work cut out for them. Daughters often struggle with self-esteem and body image as they grow up, in part because their father is such a strong figure in their life. By the time most girls are 14, they’ve internalized so many of their father’s opinions about beauty, intelligence, and character that these things may become a girl’s primary way of evaluating herself. This can be especially challenging because fathers tend to see their daughter as an extension of themselves rather than an individual with her own unique strengths and weaknesses. Dads want their daughters to see themselves the same way. Here are some tips for strengthening your relationship with your daughter and building her self-esteem from the ground up.

Talk to your daughter about the things she loves.

If you want to understand how your daughter sees herself, it’s important to understand what she loves. It is through her passions that she creates her own personality and defines herself as a person. There are a number of ways you can learn what your daughter loves. One easy way is to simply ask her questions. Ask her who her heroes are, and why they are heroes to her. Ask her what she thinks the world needs more of, and what she thinks the world needs less of. By asking your daughter questions about the things that matter to her, you can learn what makes her tick and what she finds beautiful and valuable in the world. Another way to get to know your daughter through the things she loves is to look for clues in her room. She might have a few pieces of artwork or posters that are meaningful to her but are also very revealing in terms of the kind of beauty she appreciates.

She might have a few pieces of artwork or posters that are meaningful to her but are also very revealing in terms of the kind of beauty she appreciates.

If she has a lot of art with curvaceous women, women with long hair, or women in water or with gardens in the background, then she likely appreciates a certain type of beauty.

If she has a lot of art with curvaceous women, women with long hair, or women in water or with gardens in the background, then she likely appreciates a certain type of beauty.

It is also possible that she appreciates art in general but has a small collection because of space or other considerations.Her posters, books, and other decorations are a pretty good indication of what she thinks is beautiful and worthy of attention.

Be a good role model and provide healthy feedback.

article on father daughter relationships

For many girls, their father is their first and most important role model. Unfortunately, this means that many fathers end up modeling poor self-esteem and body image. If you want your daughter to grow up with a healthy body image and a good relationship with herself, you need to model that behavior yourself. This means being honest about your own flaws and imperfections, and still loving yourself. It also means being willing to give your daughter honest and constructive feedback without tearing her down. At the same time, you want to make sure she has an awareness of how to keep herself well-groomed. The right advice at the right time can go a long way towards building confidence in your daughter.

If you’re not sure where to start, try asking questions. Ask her how she would prefer to be spoken to. Most girls of this age have an idea of what they would like to look like.It’s easy to say that your daughter’s nails should be a quarter of an inch longer, or that her hair should be a bit straighter. But it’s another thing entirely to give feedback without coming off as critical or insensitive.

 

Don’t be afraid to have difficult conversations.

Dads tend to see their daughter as an extension of themselves rather than an individual with her own unique strengths and weaknesses. This can make it challenging to navigate the unique challenges that girls face as they grow up. As your daughter grows up, you will have to have difficult conversations with her about things like body image, grooming, and dating. When you have these conversations, it is important to avoid over-generalizing and talking about girls in general as if your daughter is not a unique individual with her own likes and dislikes.

Help her love exercise and see it as a treat.

article on father daughter relationships

Many young women grow up hating exercise, and seeing it as a necessary evil. For many, it is something to be avoided at all costs. For some girls, their father is the one who takes them to the gym or drives them to their dance lessons. For others, their father is the obstacle standing in the way of their love of exercise. If you want your daughter to associate exercise with self-love and self-acceptance, you need to make it something she loves.

If you’re the one who brings her to the gym or corrals her for a family run, you need to make exercise fun and celebratory. Find a form of exercise that works for both of you, and make it something that she looks forward to — maybe it’s going to the gym together and doing a class together, or going for a run or walk and stopping at her favourite coffee shop. If she’s the one who has to make the arrangements, make it easy for her — leave workout clothes by the door, set out her running shoes, etc. If she’s the one who has to bring you to the gym or sign you up for the family run, do whatever you can to make it something she looks forward to, too.

Help her love reading and see it as a priority.

article on father daughter relationships

Many girls struggle with reading as they grow up, often because they are so focused on self-criticism that they struggle to see the beauty in words. If you want your daughter to continue to see reading as a source of beauty and strength, you need to help her continue the reading tradition you may have started with her as a child. If you read to your daughter when she was little, continue reading to her as she grows up. If you used to read her bedtime stories, continue reading to her now that she is old enough to read on her own. If you didn’t read to your daughter when she was little, now is the time to start.

Conclusion

Fathers have a unique and powerful opportunity to shape their daughter’s self-esteem. To build your daughter’s self-esteem, you need to be honest about her strengths and weaknesses and celebrate both. You also need to understand what she loves, and help her see herself through those things. When you do these things, you’ll have a strong relationship with your daughter and she’ll be well on her way to loving herself. And as an added bonus, you’ll be setting the stage for a truly special relationship with your daughter for the rest of your lives.

article on father daughter relationships

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