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Dad's Trust and Support: Reflecting this Mother's Day

Mother’s Day is coming up. This year will be a challenging one for me because it is also my late mom’s birthday. Having lost both my parents and sister unexpectedly over the last few years, this time of year evokes strong memories and emotions, and for the sake of this blog, those surrounding the bond I had with my dad.

In a previous post, I shared how my dad would often make me the authority by enlisting me on special projects and tasks. Around Mother’s Day, he and I would shop for jewelry for my mother. And now that I think of it, I had older sisters, but he never grabbed them for the shopping excursion. It may be because they loved to shop and would’ve taken him to every store in the mall. I was the exact opposite. While I loved nice things, I didn’t like the idea of having to go on the hunt for them and definitely not for hours at a time.

And so, we would head into the jewelry store. It didn’t matter what I reached for, he would purchase it. And I don’t know if he knowingly or unknowingly was doing this, but it was a sign to me that not only did he trust my input, but he supported it. He never once told me to put something back, never once tried to sway me to get something different. If I picked it up and said, "This is the one," it is what he went with. This trust has shaped my approach to relationships and decision-making; trusting my gut feeling and the decisions in my own life.

Today, many things have changed. You can now pick up your phone and shop. But the essence of those experiences, the trust and the bonding, can still be a part of the dad and daughter relationship.  You may not drive to the jewelry store, but you can certainly sit down together with a tablet and search for the perfect gift online. Share stories while you browse, and connect to strengthen your bond.

Now, I understand that everyone isn’t trusting their daughter with jewelry buying abilities. Do things according to your daughter’s age—you’re her dad, so you know her capabilities. 

Start small. Have her choose a dessert for dinner or pick a movie to watch together. Then increase the responsibility as she grows, allowing her to perhaps plan a day for the two of you, or make a decision about her extracurricular activities and education. Each one of these moments is an opportunity to affirm that you trust her. It builds her confidence, and shows her how you support her.

For Mother’s Day, I’ll be spending time reflecting on those I’ve lost, but also grateful for the memories that we created. They are a reminder of the love, trust and support that defined my childhood and have positively impacted my adulthood.

How have you been building trust and support with your daughter? Share your story in the comments below or on Instagram using the hashtag #HonrMag. There are dads who may not be saying anything, but they are reading and watching - let’s continue to create a community where we can all learn from one another and build stronger, more meaningful relationships.

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Joseph S
Joseph S
2 days ago

Mother's Day was nice but simple this year for my wife and daughters. In my house, it was always known that mother's day is the time for children to honor their mother... Having said that, I only get gifts for my mother, grandmother and mother-in-law. My children were responsible, once old enough, to plan what was to happen for their mother... Of course, with my help.

Now that they are teenagers, and one with a job, but both with an allowance, they plan and mostly execute the events surrounding mother's day.

I can totally relate, though, to taking my daughter's with me shopping for their mother for birthday, anniversary and Valentine's Day gifts. They are good at REALLY knowing thei…

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