10 Reasons Fathers are so Important to their Daughters

Updated on May 19, 2016

Fathers Play a Role in Their Daughters' Self Esteem, Self Worth and Body Image


Fathers Shape Their Daughters Self Esteem

Fathers play a key role in the psychological development of their daughters from the moment they are born.

The difference between a loving father and an absent father makes a huge difference in how the child grows up.

When fathers are absent, either physically or emotionally, their daughters are effected in many negative ways.

When fathers are present, and loving, their daughters develop a strong sense of self and are more confident in their abilities.

In order to develop positive self-esteem, a healthy father-daughter bond is key.

Fathers Influence Their Daughters' Body Image

Separate from self-esteem is the body image of a female, however this aspect of a woman's personality is just as important, if not more so.

Our body image is how we view ourselves physically, and often has no bearing on the way we are portrayed by others.

Fathers who show their daughters and wives unconditional love have higher rates of fostering a positive body image in their daughters, which sticks with them for much of their life.

Fathers who berate either their daughter or wife negatively impact the psyche of the daughter, which has been shown to foster a negative body image and can even lead to the development of eating disorders in the child.

This negative body image can also develop if a father gives off verbal or non-verbal signs that the way a female looks defines her. This can happen via body shaming comments, watching television that highlights the importance of the way a woman looks, as well as the way a father views and talks about his own body image.

Father Daughter Bonds Have Been Shown to Coorelate with Academic Abilities

Recent studies have shown that a strong father-daughter bond not only shapes her self esteem, her body image, her relationships and her behavioral traits, but it even impacts her ability to perform well academically.

Although research is still trying to figure out why this happens, females who had healthy relationships with their fathers for most of, if not all of their lives, performed better in school and on tests than females who had no relationship with their father, or if their relationship with their father was unhealthy.

A Father Helps Develop Behavioral Traits in His Daughter

Psychology used to put a heavy emphasis on the bond between a mother and her children, but recent studies have shown that a father has even greater influence on his children than a mother when it comes to the development of behavioral traits.

Fathers who show love to their daughters and accept them as they are help foster a positive sense of self in the female. Neglegant fathers, on the other hand, can send their daughters down a dark path of depression, substance abuse and psychological problems.

Steven Addis - A Father Daughter Bond, One Photo at a Time

Girls Dream of the Day Their Dad Will Walk Them Down the Aisle


Fathers Impact Social Traits in Their Daughters

The father-son bond comes much more naturally to fathers than the father-daughter bond, especially as she ages. Unfortunately, a lack of communication between a father and his daughter can have lasting effects on the way she interacts socially with others.

Studies have shown that daughters who communicate regularly with their fathers, and in a positive way, communicate better with both males and females in their lives.

From when a child is conceived throughout her entire life, the level and quality of communication between a father and his daughter plays a heavy role in her ability to express her feelings, her emotions, and her thoughts.

Wise Words from a TV Dad

For those who watch Modern Family, you know Jay, the older man with two grown children who he raised with his ex-wife, and two new children he has raised with his new wife. With years of experience on set and off the set as a father, Jay, played by Ed O'Neill, hit the nail on the head when he said during an episode that "90% of being a dad is just showing up."

My Focus Story: A Daughter's Memories of Time With Her Father

Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters: 10 Secrets Every Father Should Know

Fathers Show their Daughters How Women Deserve to Be Treated

Although mothers play a critical role in the lives of their daughters, much of what women learn about life comes from their father. From an early age, daughters pick up on the way their fathers treat other women, typically their mothers.

Fathers who are abusive, verbally or non-verbally, neglectful or hurtful towards their spouses are unknowingly teaching their daughters how females deserve to be treated.

Most women who wind up in abusive relationships later in life report some form of abuse as a child, even if it is a minor occurrence.

Fathers who show love to their wives and daughters teach their girls that females should be treated with respect, loved and cared for by others in their lives.

A Father Can Help Determine His Daughter's Persistence

The "magic" fathering style that has been linked to the development of persistence in daughters is called authoritative parenting.

This parenting style is characterized by warmth and love, yet a strong accountability to rules and responsibility.

According to researcher Laura Padilla-Walker, "fathers who are most effective are those who listen to their children, have a close relationship, set appropriate rules, but also grant appropriate freedoms."

Fathers Help Define Future Romantic Relationships for their Daughters

Scientific studies have proven that the early stages of a females life can shape her future through both her conscious and unconscious perceptions of others around her, like her parents.

From an early age, a girl learns what to look for in a romantic partner by watching her own father's actions, behaviors and traits.

It has been proven that the healthier of a relationship a daughter has with her father, the easier it is for her to find a loving, caring partner in the future.

A Mother Daughter Bond is Great, but it Can't Replace a Father Daughter Bond


Fathers Also Help Define Non-Romantic Relationships

Scientific studies show that from an early age, fathers set the standard by which their daughters will judge other men, romantically as well as platonically.

Being a father means being a role model and setting the standard on how she will view other men and how she believes that she should be treated by others.

A father who shows love to the women in his life, is nurturing and compassionate, is a father who helps his daughter avoid unhealthy relationships with other men as she ages.

Do you have a strong relationship with your father?

See results

Fathers are Role Models for Their Daughters, Whether They Like it or Not

Daughters don't choose to be born, but parents choose to have children - this is an important distinction and a key factor as to why healthy father-daughter relationships are so important.

A father is supposed to be a role model in the life of his daughter.

As I have already discussed, studies show that daughters that don't have a healthy bond with their father have shown to be more likely to engage in aggressive behavior, practice unsafe sex, perform poorly in school, develop unhealthy relationships with others, and even develop psychological problems compared to daughters who have strong bonds with their father.

Neglected, abandoned, and/or abused daughters also typically feel abandoned, depressed, and rejected. They often see themselves as failures because of their lack of a relationship with their dad.

© 2014 Kathleen Odenthal


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      The Daughter - M.A.W 47 hours ago

      As the daughter in this, I can say that majority of this information is true. My father walked out on my mother and I when I was 14. Prior to that, he had been cheating and then demanded a divorce when I was 12, which he got, but still lived with us. He never paid child support or cared for me. I didn't talk to him much when he was still living with us, but when he left, I saw him packing and I knew he was leaving. And it hurt. I didn't know my parents where divorced until I was 14, I didn't know any of it. I still sometimes find myself doubting my self-worth. Other times I wonder why he did what he did and whether or not he still thinks about me...

    • profile image

      Alienated Father 9 months ago

      Well I wonder if my ex wife has read this as she wilfully mislead and minipulated the family court through a complete abuse of process. I had every appalling accusation possible raised against me and the time came to look after myself before the court distroyed me. I have not seen my daughter for over six years as a once innocent and loving relationship between a five year old girl and her father was totally distroyed by her mother and incompetent family courts.

    • profile image

      Anon 10 months ago

      Well as a recently separated father to a 7 year old girl there has been a reasonable amount of soul searching taking place. It has been proposed that my role in her life is now complete pretty well and extended family are now of upmost importance....necessitating her to move to another country. This I refuse to accept as I think that my input with this beutiful little girl is of the utmost priority. Thanks for the hub...condolidates now not just what i feel is right in my heart but what is best.

    • profile image

      goalsarehigh 15 months ago

      Fantastic hub, used some of the words when trying to write a letter to my dad who I hardly see and trying to make him understand how having him in my life would be so important to me and my family as he doesn't see his only biological grandchildren and only sends them money for Christmas but money means nothing in the eyes of a child!!

    • profile image

      Rani 17 months ago

      I cannot deny the fact that daughter has strong bond with her father than her mother. I don't know about any research work, but it really true for me.i really shared strong special bond with my father. Unfortunately, he is no more.He died long in 2008.But still I can feel him. I missed him. He is always in my heart. Still I feel his presence. He still inspires me. He motivates me.All my childhood memories brings happiness in me. I am 40 years old . I have my own family. But he is always part of mine sometimes I feel guilty why I don't have such special bond with my mother. I love her but I can feel not that special one. She is living with us .I love her .I feel for her. But special bonding is missing somewhere and I always tries to have that extraordinary love but cannot do justice with her and not with myself. I am sorry mommy. I love you daddy. You are my hero. I am proud to be your daughter. I am trying and will always try to be the best daughter of yours. I miss you.

    • Kathleen Odenthal profile image

      Kathleen Odenthal 3 years ago from Bridgewater

      Um, I disagree with you and have read numerous clinical studies on this subject, not to mention my own personal experiences. I don't mind people disagreeing with me, but there is no need to be rude and tell others that you are correct and that they are wrong

    • profile image

      Jean(in the Valley) 3 years ago

      August 9, 2014

      It is true that the most important parent is the like gender parent, so a mother is the role model parent or the daughter and the dad for the son.

      We can also admit that the mother is important in a girl's growing up, not just her dad. This trend or belief, is just old patriarchal myth that was created by men, a man made doctrine to exalt dads higher than moms. This myth wont work , sorry.

    • thumbi7 profile image

      JR Krishna 3 years ago from India

      My daughters adore and respect their father. They discuss sports and politics with their father only though they are very close to me.

    • Kathleen Odenthal profile image

      Kathleen Odenthal 3 years ago from Bridgewater

      Thank you all for the kind words and support for my hub. I am glad it has been helpful to some of you!

    • TycoonSam profile image

      TycoonSam 3 years ago from Washington, MI

      I have two daughters. Thank you for this hub!

    • K. Burns Darling profile image

      Kristen Burns-Darling 3 years ago from Orange County, California

      I was very blessed to have grown up with both an amazing father and grandfather. Because of them, I grew up with many advantages, (strong self-image, high self-esteem, and a deep understanding of how a man SHOULD treat a woman that he loves, etc.), that many of my peers unfortunately lacked. This is a strong hub with much needed advice for fathers and for daughters. Voted up, useful, and interesting.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 3 years ago from North Carolina

      I was just discussing this subject with my daughter about her husband and my granddaughter. They do not have a good relationship and there has been much emotional absence from my son in law. He doesn't 'get it' despite all that my daughter attempts to point out to him.

      Your hub has so much valuable information it is a real help. Thanks for your insightful wisdom here. UP/U/I and shared.

    • rustedmemory profile image

      David Hamilton 3 years ago from Lexington, KY

      Someone wants me to hear this. I have heard much of the same information on the radio heading to work. Thanks for sharing.


    • Kathleen Odenthal profile image

      Kathleen Odenthal 3 years ago from Bridgewater

      Thank you very much for your comment, you completely got what I was trying to say and that means the world to me :)

    • grand old lady profile image

      Mona Sabalones Gonzalez 3 years ago from Philippines

      This is a wonderful hub. This hub is why I am always so impressed when a young man talks of the importance of fatherhood and children. Fathers can be absent, whether they divorce or stay married in name only. But real men take fatherhood seriously and they know the meaning of commitment and the time it takes to make that commitment an enriching family experience. Sorry, I tend to ramble. Great hub.

    • Kathleen Odenthal profile image

      Kathleen Odenthal 3 years ago from Bridgewater

      Thanks Madison! I just saw yours, it was so beautiful!

    • Madison Resare profile image

      Madison Resare 3 years ago

      Great hub for Father's Day :)

    • Kathleen Odenthal profile image

      Kathleen Odenthal 3 years ago from Bridgewater

      I am in a similar boat MsDora, and I am glad your daughter has a good father figure to look up to :)

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Great points and the video is really touching. Never had a dad or dad figure in my life, and I was always jealous of those who did. My ex-husband blamed some of my relationship flaws on that fact. So grateful that my daughter has dad and that they have a good relationship.

    • Kathleen Odenthal profile image

      Kathleen Odenthal 3 years ago from Bridgewater

      Thank you so much :) Im glad you had a strong bond with your father, I unfortunately do not, which is what inspired me to write this, because I know how much it hurts me, and I would like other females in my situation to realize it isn't them and they arent alone, and to show those who have strong bonds with their father to appreciate that bond.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      K.O.....You & I feel much the same about a Father-Daughter relationship/Bond. There was only my older sister and I. To this day I think my Dad resolved himself to the fact that a little girl would be his side-kick while he tried not to make a Tom-Boy out of her.

      Where ever my Dad was, there I was. Whatever he was doing.....I was trying to do also. He was truly a "multi-talented guy"

      I am ever grateful I learned so many interesting things as his "apprentice." LOL

      A sweet & wonderful Hub and well-timed for Father's Day...UP+++

    • Janellegems profile image

      Janellegems 3 years ago from United States

      Excellent hub. Thanks for showing the important ways of how fathers can impact every aspect of their daughter's life. Very needed hub for fathers today. Voted up!!!

    Show All Categories