A father’s display of his unconditional love is important in the development of his children. Statistically speaking, when a daughter feels that her dad is available and attentive in her life, she is more likely to feel confident and self-assured. In 2013, Utah State University revealed their findings from a study done on father-daughter relationships, with the results showing that fathers have a positive impact on the mental and emotional well-being of their daughters.
One of the ways that a father can connect with his daughter is by taking her on daddy-daughter dates. This can start when his child is a toddler and continue into young adulthood.
Elaine Taylor-Klaus, a parenting certified coach says:
“There are many benefits to father-daughter dates. When a girl has a comfortable relationship with her father, it sets a positive tone for future relationships in her life, including significant others, business relationships, and friendships. If she feels valued and respected by her father, she’s more likely to expect that out of other relationships with men.”
Single mothers can encourage uncles, close male friends, and grandfathers to spend one-on-one time with their children and develop a safe relationship with mature, kind adults. She can also create a special bond with her children by taking them on individual dates.
There are many inexpensive ideas for father-daughter dates, below are just a few.
- A park and picnic date: Younger children especially will enjoy a special walk with their father to a local park. Bringing along a blanket and picnic lunch is an inexpensive way to make the date extra special and fun.
- Splash pad and ice cream: In the summer time, there are often splash pads, ponds, or shallow beaches that are free to the public. Cooling off on a hot day with a dip in the water and an ice cream cone after is an excellent way to bond.
- Camping in the backyard: Many children love the idea of camping, but also enjoy the comfort of being close to home. Setting up a tent in the backyard and camping all night is a fun way to experience the outdoors, while still having access to a flushing toilet and fridge.
- Volunteer together: Older children may enjoy the opportunity to volunteer at a local soup kitchen or food bank. Every city has multiple needs for volunteers and volunteering together is a great way to bond and serve others.
- Surprise her with a pizza lunch: If your job is flexible, you have some vacation days, or you have weekdays off, you can surprise your daughter by picking her up at school for a special pizza lunch. Taking her out for a surprise lunch is an easy way to grow closer and create special memories.
- Visit a museum: Many museums offer free days a few times a year, keep track of free days at local museums and take your daughter for a fun day of exploring and learning.
- Hike a trail: Enjoy the outdoors by going for a fun trail hike. Bring snacks and water and take stops along the way. Try to find a trail with beautiful scenery, such as a hidden waterfall or pond.
- Cook or bake together: On a rainy day, consider seizing the opportunity for a special date in the kitchen. Bake some cookies or make dinner together to surprise the rest of the family.
- Go to the farm: Take a special drive into the country and visit a farm. Try to find a farm that has a petting zoo and fun activities for kids. During certain times of the year, you can also try picking apples or strawberries to take home.
- Go biking: Take a bike ride or roller skate together. Keeping active as a family is a great way to encourage healthy self-esteem and body image.
These are just a few ideas to get you started on a life-time of father-daughter dates. Remember to include dates that are interesting to both dad and daughter, but most importantly, focus on spending time talking, laughing, and creating fun memories together.