Here’s to the dads of all girls, whose lives probably aren’t the way they pictured it.

Here’s to the dads who attend tea parties while wearing crowns and sporting pastel-colored friendship bracelets to work. Here’s to the guys who kiss dollies good night and laugh when co-workers tell them they have glitter in their hair. Here’s to the men who sit through impromptu fashion shows instead of watching the big game.

Here’s to the dads who teach their daughters to box out in basketball or use their bodies in soccer or how to field grounders. Here’s to the dads who take their daughters fishing and for three-mile runs and to the Indy 500. Here’s to the dads who used to dream of watching sons play football, but now cheer the loudest for their daughters at weekend cheerleading competitions. They still teach them to throw perfect spirals, too.

Here’s to the dads who believe you don’t have to be a man to be handy and teach their daughters how to change tires or fix a running toilet or mow the lawn. Here’s to the guys who encourage their daughters to play in the mud and then let them paint their nails. Here’s to the man who cheers on other women, so his daughter doesn’t just hear that she can be anything she wants, she sees it firsthand.

Here’s to the dads who don’t complain that there’s never any hot water or there’s hair in all the drains or that high-pitch squeals often come with the territory.

Here’s to the dads who don’t check out during puberty, who try to remain close to their daughters during this awkward time. Here’s to the fathers who shut down the shame the world casts on young women and don’t mock the hormonal and body changes young girls often face.

Here’s to the men who don’t try to intimidate their daughters’ suitors, because they feel confident they’ve raised strong girls who know their self-worth. Here’s to the dads who empower young women. raising them to be fierce and determined, but also kind and well-intentioned.

Here’s to the dads who model how a woman should be treated by respecting their daughters’ mothers. Here’s to the dads who don’t seek power by marginalizing or using force against someone else.

And here’s to the dads who are raising strong women, yet understand that this also can mean there are a lot of tears too—and they have no problem with the fact that they often will never know why anyone in their house is crying.

Bonus points if they show their daughters that real men sometimes shed tears, too. 

But most of all, here’s to the dads of all daughters who upon hearing the unending comments like . . . 

“Dude, you are so screwed, wait until they: 
want all the clothes, or 
the boys start coming around, or
they better get their shotgun handy, or 
get their periods at the same time, or 
get married and you have to pay for all the weddings, or
any of the million inane things people will say over time. . . 

Who simply respond: “I love being a dad to my girls. I wouldn’t want it any other way.”

Here's to the dads of all girls, whereas life probably isn't the way you pictured it.Here's to the dads who attend tea…

Posted by Playdates on Fridays by Whitney Fleming on Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Whitney Fleming

Whitney is a mom of three teen daughters, a communications consultant, and blogger. She tries to dispel the myth of being a typical suburban mom although she is often driving her minivan to soccer practices and attending PTA meetings. She writes about parenting, relationships, and w(h)ine on her blog Playdates on Fridays.