Listen up, dads! Here's what your daughters wished you knew

"I wish he knew how much I loved him and admired him."
"I wish he knew how much I loved him and admired him."

Do any of us ever make it out of childhood without scars? 

For most people, deep-seated insecurities have been the direct result of parental shortcomings, but can we blame them for not knowing what they didn't know?  

Body positivity guru Ashley Graham has spoken candidly about the impact her father's mocking comments had on her growing up, telling Good Morning America that parents should never underestimate just how much their opinions matter to their children, even into adulthood. 

"Parents need to know that they are shaping the future of their children. Words have power. The things that you say to yourself as a parent – the things that you say maybe even just one time to your children... they take it into their real world and into their [lives] and beyond."

Using criticism instead of encouragement may have been a huge part of parenting back when Ashley and the rest of us were growing up, but that was before the internet.

Redditer @dogidoga_100 took to the popular r/AskReddit forum with the question, "What is something you wish your father knew about girls when you were growing up?"

Aimed at the "daughters of Reddit," @dogidoga_100 managed to pull both a daddy-how manual of sorts and a much-needed therapy session for all daughters. 

Here are the incredible pearls of wisdom we found scrolling through the nearly 3 000 responses the post racked up. 

Also see: Fathers make society better and 12 other facts from the first State of SA’s Fathers report

What do you wish your father knew about you growing up? Share your awkward, angry or funny story with us, and we could publish your letter. Anonymous contributions are welcome.

You gon' learn today!

Knowing how to navigate our hair is crucial


Learning about and understanding menstruation is a must




That girl-memory runs deep

Gender discrimination should not begin in childhood

"That I'm not a boy, and it hurts immensely when you spend more time with the neighbour's son than your own daughter because I'm not the boy you wanted." (posted by Cyanide_Kitty_101) 

Also see: Dads, do you think you parent your daughters and sons differently?

Dad double standards suck



That dad body shaming is the worst kind 


Not spending enough time together hurts

"That he could’ve spent more time with me. That just because I was a girl didn’t mean that I didn’t want to go hunting with him and shoot guns with him. He never took me, he took my brother, though.

Sometimes I wish I could’ve talked to him about things I was struggling with in high school, but since he didn’t understand me, I couldn’t talk to him. I wish that when the guy who sexually assaulted me, asked my dad for permission to propose, my dad would’ve said ‘hell no’ instead of ‘yes’. I was 17 at the time. I had no business being engaged at that age. I did tell the guy no when he proposed, but I wish my dad never would’ve given him permission." (posted by artyfischal) 

Forcing your daughters to take up your interests makes them hate your interests

Keeping creepy guy banter at bay is non-negotiable

That daughters want to know their fathers, warts and all 

"I would have liked it if my dad talked to me about boys and shared his opinion about my boyfriends and gave me advice.

Actually, I just wished my dad talked to me about anything. I wanted to know about his life, his childhood etc. I wanted him to share his interests, what music he liked, what concerts he went to. I know nothing. He's just a quiet guy. The only time we have real conversations is if he has a few beers.

Dad's job growing up was to discipline and create respect for him through fear. I was afraid of him until I was 18. Now it feels like there is a lot of lost time. I never understood what people meant when they were "Daddy's girls", I never experienced that.

Also not siding with my mom for every single disagreement we ever had. I know he was just trying to support her because it was worse to have an angry wife but it really hurt me.

I guess it's up to me to get to know him now and understand how he became who he is." (posted by xjewleex) 

That your affection is more important than you could ever know

Chat back:

What do you wish your father knew about you growing up? Share your awkward, angry or funny story with us, and we could publish your letter. Anonymous contributions are welcome.

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