A Dad’s Perspective (I got this!)

Written by: Joseph Kerney

It has been one of the greatest joys of my life to raise my daughter. This is my first child, so I had no idea what to expect, even after reading all the books.

Since I was the baby in my immediate family, I got used to getting almost everything I wanted, but I didn’t want to spoil my daughter in the same way. I have found it’s okay to go with the flow and let your natural instincts shine through.

My 22-month-old daughter is just as independent as a typical two-year-old. She says “No!” without a second thought and loves to run away whenever it’s time for a diaper change. At times I believe she’ll be a food critic, given how easily she dismisses the options we offer her. She is also very adamant when she sees something she wants, pointing at the object and saying “this,” then pointing back at herself.

At times I worry if I am doing all the “right” things I am supposed to do, according to the books, doctors, articles and advice about raising a girl. I read to her daily and spend quality time playing even when I am dead tired after work, which can be grueling since I am a teacher. How does a man raise a girl? I don’t want to be too strict lest she think me mean. I don’t want to be too lenient or she’ll think I’m a pushover. I want her to be respectful, compassionate and friendly; love well; and make wise decisions.

My best advice is to take an eclectic approach when raising daughters. A little bit from everywhere can go a long way. You are learning who she is, and she will do the same with you. I knew from the moment I saw her that she had me around her finger—and there is no place I would rather be. 

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Posted on June 26, 2012 at 9:33 AM