En Gedi: Finding rest in the wilderness!

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Posts Tagged ‘feminine’

Single Dads Raising Daughters!

Posted by Scott on November 20, 2007

Single Dads Raising Daughters

For a single dad, raising a daughter can feel like treading on foreign soil.

by Keith Wooden

Our two doors close in staccato beats with just an eight-note separation. It’s all part of the routine as my daughter transfers her belongings from one house to the other for the week’s stay with me.

Here’s my challenge: My daughter needs a dad who will span the cosmic gulf between female and male — without appearing to be extraterrestrial. Your daughter does, too. Our task is simple: Find the vehicle necessary to make the trip from our world to theirs.

Simple, huh? So how can single fathers raising daughters do that?

Find mentors

Men need the contribution of women to nurture our daughters and connect with them. I have curled my daughter’s hair and bought her feminine hygiene products, but I am still a man. My daughter needs a woman to show her how to be a woman.

The first female in your daughter’s life is still her biological mother. Support their relationship through your words and actions. Don’t play custody games or speak in anger.

If your daughter’s mom isn’t available, find someone — or several someones — who can become your daughter’s surrogate mom(s).

Build communication

How well do you and your daughter communicate? Cash in your “mister-fix-it” tool kit, and buy into open questions and empathetic responses. Open questions cannot be answered with yes or no and always extend conversation. Empathetic responses — such as “how did that make you feel?” — expose the heart behind the answers.

Dare to dream

Dreaming together opens a panorama of new horizons. Have you ever heard about her dreams about the future? What color will her prom dress be? What is her idea of the ideal man? Do you speak of her future? Will she make a great mother, or doctor, or lawyer or decorator?

Dreams are the packages of the heart. When you open your daughter’s dreams, you open her heart. You must never say, “That’s impossible,” or “That’s silly.” If you do, you will never hold her heart so close again. Dreams are the wings of her future.

Woman in the making

She is in your home and life for a season, then you’ll hear, “There’s a boy outside. His name is Jim. He wants to know if I can play with him … dance with him … marry him. Can I, Daddy? Can I?”

Is this the end you had in mind? Take a long look into your little girl’s eyes. Can you see it? There is something inexorable taking place. She is becoming a woman.

A few months ago my 13-year-old went to a school social. She danced with a young man, and when it was over, he kissed her. Mind you, I was not told this by my daughter, but rather heard it through the teenage grapevine. I approached my daughter.

“Whitney, I heard you kissed a boy.”

“ No I didn’t, Dad. He kissed me.”

“ He kissed, you kissed. The point is your lips touched.”

“No! It is important. He kissed me!”

“Well, why didn’t you slap him or duck or something?

“Well, Dad, because I kinda liked it.”

Did you hear that sound? That’s a dad’s sigh as he’s watching his little girl grow up. I’ll get over it. Just give me seven more years. But I really don’t mind as much as I protest. I think I’ve seen in my mind’s eye the woman she will become, and I can’t wait to meet her. There are just two things I long to hear: One at eternity’s portal: “Well done, My good and faithful servant.” And the other at the head of an aisle: “Thanks, Daddy, I love you.”

Focus on the Family 2007

-Scott Bailey 2007

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