I was pretty excited for the big event; ” Daddy and Daughters Night.” The gala event was being sponsored by Desert Springs Christian Pre-school. My daughter, Emma was four years old. I was certain that the two of us would shine at our first big public outing.
The teacher had interviewed each child with a standard set of questions; how tall is your daddy?, how much do you think your daddy weighs?, what does your daddy do for a job? Their answers were recorded on these interview sheets and posted on the walls around the classroom. It was a cute way to hear from our young daughters and to meet the other dad’s in our class.
I was a Primary Therapist at Remuda Ranch Treatment Center. The Center was an intensive In-patient facility which specialized in treating young women with eating disorders. I looked forward to meeting the other dad’s as I entered the Open House. I did a few, semi-awkward, guy dad greetings and began to read the interviews posted on the wall. Rachel’s dad was a Policeman, she had drawn a picture of a Police car at the bottom of her interview. Katherine’s dad was a teacher at a Christian school. Then I came to Emma’s description of me. She estimated my height to be 10 feet, my weight to be 45lb’s. When asked about my job, Emma stated, ” my dad goes to work and talks to girls all day.”
The night was turning out a little different than I had expected. I wanted to clarify Emma’s statements about my “job” to the other dad’s. I did not want to sound defensive; but, Emma had clearly missed my good intentions and motives.
So here is the take away. Our intentions are important, but they will often be missed by our daughters. We can get distracted defending our intentions. We need to monitor the impact of our choices more than we need to defend our “good intentions.” To really stay connected to our daughters we need to hear from them. This tends to happen more effectively if our mouths are shut and our ears are open.
Guy Dowd, a former “Teacher of the Year” said, “No one cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.” Most adolescent girls will feel more loved and secure when they are listened to, rather than talked to. Learn to ask great questions and Listen as if your whole relationship depends on it; because it does.
Grace & Peace,
Dr. Don Worcester
November is HERE. That means you are now thinking about Christmas shopping! We got you covered! Check out the MFD store below and pick up some gear for the Dads and Daughters in your life. (Baby’s too) And the banner below takes you to the site where you can pick up the book Prized Possession for the readers in your life!
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