Boys watch their fathers and do what they do. The best thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.
Boys will learn how to treat a woman by watching how his father treats his mother. Men need to be servants in their homes and treat their wives with respect and honor. Likewise, boys need to see their fathers serving outside of the home as well. Are you helping an elderly relative install something or help a friend paint a house? Take your little boy along! Although he might not be able to help much, it will be extremely beneficial for that little boy to see his dad serving someone else.
Girls need to hear words of comfort.
What would be your first words to your daughter if:
• She lost something important
• She injured herself in a minor accident because she was being careless
• She caused a fender-bender
• She came to you and told you that she’s pregnant
What would your first words be? Would they be comforting words, or words of anger, disappointment, and judgment? Daughters around the country tell us the same thing: They do not think they can talk to their dads about their problems because they are afraid of what their dads will say or do. They do not sense unconditional acceptance from their dads. If they make a mistake, daughters feel their dads will judge them and be disappointed, first and foremost. Though we do not think a dad should relax his values or stop having high expectations for his daughter’s behavior. Comforting a child is more important than driving home a point. Certainly, comforting a daughter is more important than proving that you are right.
You will have other opportunities to teach your daughter about right and wrong, but if your daughter comes to you with a problem, your first priority should be to comfort her by:
1. Allowing her to express her feelings
2. Actively listening to her
3. Responding with empathy This three-tiered process for comforting your daughter is particularly important if she is disappointed or if she has disappointed you.