It’s time to DADUP with these five things we encourage you to include in your parenting every week (if not every day.) They are easy to do…and easy to forget to do. So remember to DADUP and be involved with your daughter(s).
D is for Dine. Want to know why you’ve heard for decades that eating together around the table is good for your family? Because it’s fact. They’ve done the research. (Short story: It lowers the risks of obesity, substance abuse, eating disorders, and even increases the chance of graduating from high school.) The bad news is that the frequency in which families are doing this is declining. We know. You’re busy. But if you can squeeze in at least one family meal a week, it’s a start. Oh, and NO electronics. This is anti-screen time.
A is for Applaud. OK, you don’t literally have to clap your hands here. Maybe we could use the word affirmation? Basically, send her positive reinforcement for her good behavior, accomplishments at school, stellar sticker skills…whatever. A father’s praise is like gold glitter to a young daughter.
D is for Discuss. A recent survey stated that only 4.1% of teenage girls in America feel that they can approach their fathers and discuss a serious problem. That’s not a typo. That’s four point one percent. If you aren’t talking with her now – one on one (that’s key) – she won’t feel she can approach you when it really matters. Carve out 15 minutes with just her and show interest in who she is and what she’s talking about (even if it’s Justin Beiber).
U is for Unwind. Daddy Daughter Time is all about spending time together doing fun stuff. Just as important? Chill time. Literally. Do something that requires very little effort or something that helps you relax. Include her. Whether it’s a walk in the park or just catching a (kid) flick on Netflix, sometimes just being in the same place while you both just chill can bring you closer together.
P is for Participate. The opposite of unwinding. Get up off the couch or away from the laptop and dive into her world. Sure, you’ll be at her soccer game or band concert… but what about when she’s playing with her toys or doing homework? This is your chance to be a kid again. I mean, you didn’t really want to grow up anyways, right?
Active and involved fathering isn’t all that tough. Use these reminders and DADUP!
Have you checked out our D.A.D.U.P. program? It’s a monthly (and sometimes more often) reminder for Dads to help them remain active and involved in their daughters’ lives. The #dadvice we give out at each event is based on 5 traits: Dependability. Approachability. Devotion. Understanding. Patience. You can learn more about it here.