Andrew Whitlatch - Courtesy Laugh Network - June 7, 2011
I admire close father-daughter relationships. I smile when I see a little girl and her father walking through the park or eating ice cream together. I’m sorry if you didn’t have a father growing up, or your relationship has turned sour. My intention is not to make you feel bad. My intention is to celebrate the positive experiences I have seen between fathers and daughters.
I grew up in a house with two older brothers. The closest I had to a sister was my oldest brother Adam (just kidding brother, I love you). The father daughter relationship is crucial for a young woman. A girl’s relationship with her father influences relationships with men for the rest of her life. I’m fascinated by how much power and influence father’s possess.
The first time I noticed this power was in high school. I was dating a nice girl and we would visit one another’s houses. For a young high school kid, your girlfriend’s father can be frightening (who am I kidding, it’s still terrifying). Her father came over to my house to pick her up. He was one of the nicest dads I have ever met and he would always chat with me when I came over. He parked his motorcycle across the street. I watched her from the window as she ran out the front door. She was so excited. It was summer and the sun shined slightly over the horizon. It felt like a warm summer night when I played Little League baseball. There was a glow from the sun. Her dad handed her a helmet and she climbed on the back. She held him tightly as they drove away. This small, subtle interaction has always stuck with me. I like the protectiveness of a father daughter relationship.
It allows men to let down their wall of masculinity. Sensitivity, care and compassion are not often associated with masculinity. Men put up an emotional wall sometimes. A father’s relationship with his daughter breaks down that wall. I’ve seen grown men holding pink backpacks. I refuse to hold my girlfriend’s purse.
I admire my girlfriend’s relationship with her father. Her pride and love for her father push me to be the best I can for her. She only accepts the absolutely best from me. Her strong role model at home is a constant reminder for me to hold the same standard of respect and love.
In the words of John Mayer, “Fathers, be good to your daughters. Daughters will love like you do.”