Fathers are the first role model in a child's life. Whether he is a dad biologically, as a step-father, or just a father figure; children need a male influence in their life to successfully grow into well-balanced adults. Unfortunately, many children live without a father in the home - which doesn't help shine a positive light for dads who are navigating their way through fatherhood.
Parenting articles are generally targeted at mothers raising children; there are limited resources to support fathers, and many men feel intimidated about starting a family because of these factors. However, similar to a mother having 'maternal instincts,' fathers instinctively teach their children life skills that impact how well a child will develop. The lessons taught vary for different family dynamics, of course, but there are some universal essential skills that are taught by dads.
10 How To Be Strong Yet Considerate
Men are generally stereotyped to have limited abilities in expressing their emotions. Although some men are sensitive while others may be more macho - they teach their children that love can be shown in different ways.
While mothers are typically considered to be sensitive emotional nurturers, fathers generally are able to show their love by practicality, ensuring safety, and supporting their children. Even though dads may come across more stern than having an emotional nurturing approach, children know that their father's strength is the voice of reason in considering their overall needs. Fathers also teach their children the importance of self-care because they are more likely to take time for themselves, especially when they are upset.
9 To Work With Your Hands
Children look up to their fathers and the hobbies they enjoy. The beauty of this is that children learn that interests don't always have to be academic... that it is a good thing to know how to work with your hands. Working with your hands teaches kids linear thinking skills (the sequence of how things are done), pragmatic language (what we say and how we say it, i.e: giving or receiving instructions), and practical skills (i.e: how to change a tire).
Each hobby or interest fathers enjoy can vary based on his personality and skill set. Whether it is mechanical work on automobiles, construction work like renovations, assembling action figures, or landscaping the backyard; little eyes are watching what their daddy is tinkering with.
8 How A Man Should Treat Her
Having a meaningful relationship with a father is very important to little girls. Based on the relationship with her dad, this will be her impression of how men are and how they should treat her. She may also consider her dad as her protector, thus gauging how much trust she could instill in other men, which will be important for her future relationships.
How a father treats his daughter affects how she views herself and her self-esteem. A dad makes his daughter feel special and teaches her that she is beautiful inside and out. Without this, she may question her self-worth, and if she deserves to be treated equally or not by her future spouse.
7 How To Treat Women
Little boys look up to their fathers, as they are the main male role model in their life. The way a man treats his partner or spouse sets the example of how his son will treat his future relationships. If a father loves, respects, and appreciates his spouse - his son will see women as equal. If a father condescends or disrespects the boy's mother - his son might see women as objects.
A father can show his son how to be courteous, chivalrous, and how to express needs respectfully. This is important as it helps teach responsible decision making, rather than acting on impulse or ego.
6 Family Comes First
Most fathers pride themselves on family values and stability of support. Having a sense of belonging is important for men who are self-reflective. They not only have the instinctual need to provide for their children financially, but value the importance of their family's relationships with each other.
Through good times and bad, everything that a father does is for the betterment of his family. He makes sacrifices in his personal, work, and social life to be able to care for his children in whatever means necessary. Even though the old-school-mentality to be a father is to be the bread-winner of the family is super dated in today's society, many men feel that it is also their responsibility to be the provider. This shows his children that family always comes first.
5 To Be A Kid At Heart
Although dads may be the ones more likely to discipline their children, they are also the ones who teach their kids how to have fun. Fathers are more likely to tickle their children or act silly - after all, many men claim to be young at heart.
Showing children that life doesn't always have to be so serious teaches kids to enjoy the little things and to cherish the time spent with a loved one. Fathers may be more willing to rough-house, get dirty, or seek adventures with their kids, as opposed to some mothers who may be self-conscious of judgement. This creates a happy balance of when to laugh and when to be deliberate, which will come in handy as the child matures.
4 Not To Let Life Knock You Down
A father may carry the world on his shoulders when he gives himself the responsibility of providing for his family. Although he wears a strong facade, determination and resilience are what has got him through some very difficult times. However, a father can teach his kids that in order to get what you want out of life, you need to work hard for it. That the world owes them nothing.
Fathers are more likely to give tough love, but in many ways show their children to never quit. Men are typically less likely to sugar-coat tribulations even for their children, which in turn can prepare his kids for real-life experiences. Watching how their father handles stress, setbacks, and curveballs will give them the courage to handle future conflicts within their own life.
3 How To Be Assertive
Although women generally consider how their needs or wants may affect someone other than themselves, men tend to be regarded as better at seeing the bigger picture, at following through with asking for something to attain their desired outcome.
From their fathers, children can learn how to say NO when they feel like their values have been compromised. They learn how to use their voice to communicate their wants, which can help foster leadership and delegation skills.
2 How To Be Courageous
Men are known to be more realistic, especially when it comes to fears. Where mothers would have the need to comfort her child for being afraid of something, fathers teach their kids that some things are not to be feared.
Men can make light of some situations, either by use of humour or encouragement, to push their kids past their limits. Some fathers are also more adventurous and expose their children to opportunities to explore their natural surroundings (i.e: the forest) without the worry of letting his kids' hands get dirty. Having a courageous role model can help lessen anxiety in children.
1 To Take Initiative
A lot of men pride themselves on their ability to be 'handy.' It is part of their nature to take initiative to fix things for the sake of his family. Many have the mentality of "when something is broken... fix it yourself."
Regardless if he is actually capable of making repairs, this shows his children that trial and error are the key to learning skills. It may be easier to just pay for someone else to fix it, but it is much more satisfying problem-solving and working hard. They see a change that needs to be resolved, take charge of what needs to be done and follows through on the action.