Dads And Daughters: How Raising A Girl Is More Challenging For Fathers Today
Dads raising daughters today face different challenges compared to a decade ago. Parenting educator and psychologist Steve Biddulph highlights these challenges in his new book, "10 Things Girls Need Most."
Bidduph said daughters have "different risk factors" than sons especially with social media becoming a huge influence in young people's lives. Their participation in various social media platforms makes girls more self-aware.
Such awareness, however, triggers anxieties as social media increases the pressure of being a teenager and it is worse for the girls. "They are surrounded with this idea you have to look pretty and you have to look hot, you have to be popular," Bidduph said, as per ABC News Australia.
Bidduph cites the statistics on the challenges of raising daughters in a piece he wrote via Canberra Times. Self-harm is on the rise, as well as eating disorder and anxiety diagnosis among girls.
"We must do more to make our daughters strong and free," the expert wrote. "It begins in babyhood," he added.
Fathers of today's young girls have the important role of making sure their daughters feel valued; that they have a healthy self-esteem. Daughters need to learn to set their bar higher for how they should be treated and they model this bar from the way their father treats them.
Dads are their daughters' protectors and this role is a constant. Over the years, however, dads also have to show their daughters that men have caring and sensitive sides so that these are the values they will look for in their future partners.
To reinforce these values, dads and daughters need to spend as much quality time as possible and spend this time while the girls are younger. The bonding between dads and daughters becomes a teaching moment as it will help girls develop a stronger sense of self-worth she will value even when she's an adult.