For many years, the effects of father-child relationship have been overlooked, mainly because fathers were believed to play the prime role of breadwinners or providers for the families. However, contemporary study findings have consistently shown that paternal presence poses significant effects on a child’s growth, and is indeed critical in influencing a girl’s ability to leading healthy romantic relationships in the future.
In fact, today, a girl’s ability or difficulty in committing to relationships, struggle to submit to a seemingly ‘authoritative husband’ and problems or strengths in handling positive criticism while in relationships are all factors that can be associated with a father’s role in modeling her behavior. This article highlights some of the ways in which a father-daughter bond may affect the daughters’ ability to foster healthy romantic relationships.
A dad may help set standards for a good spouse
It’s an obvious observation that many dads have tight bonds with their daughters and treat them the best. As such, daughters who grow in presence of their dads pick a gist of how they deserve to be treated by a man who claims to care about them. When they become of age, these girls will prefer suitors who possess almost similar attributes to their father, or one who is almost a perfect replica to the dad.
For instance, a dad will mostly give positive opinions of the daughter, which makes them believe in their unlimited capabilities to thrive. They will thus confide with a mate who approves of her, respects her, and one who shows not tendencies to belittle them.
Father-daughter relationship helps the daughter sustains a positive self-image
Girls are always sensitive to their body images, which may include their size, build and shape. For some, this becomes an important issue, to the point of affecting their social lives. At escalated points, body image is so important to a girly, that it affects her self-confidence. However, at this point, a male opinion may stir a diversion of self-perception. In fact, a dad’s opinion may mean a change in how the girl views or perceives herself.
In any case, a daughter who is close to the dad will take in the words the father uses to describe them. Regardless of the body type, the words of a great dad will affect the confidence in the girl and make her believe in herself as beautiful, attractive and deserving. Such a girl will thus not fall into the quagmire of chauvinist, toxic masculinity, or fall prey to the exploitation of a boyfriend just because she has grown to believe negatively of herself. She will quit a relationship if the man attacks her self-image.
A father-daughter relationship affects her fear for relationship or trust in men
A father-daughter bond will definitely affect her ability to relate with men outside home. A daughter who receives empty promises from her father might grow mistrusting men. Similarly, a daughter brought up by a distant or violent father might experience difficulties believing in love or the kindness of men, and despite how hard a potential spouse might try to convince her, she might always remain suspicious and cagey.
In many cases, such girls may prefer staying single or marry only after gaining financial, economic or social independence which will act as source of security. This is mainly out of fear that men are potentially malicious beings. On the contrary, a girl who enjoyed a close, healthy bond with her father is likely to be confident in scrutinizing suitors and eventually emerge with her best fit and sustain a healthy relationship with him.
A father’s presence will save the daughter from sexual vulnerabilities
A close dad-daughter relationship that is founded on open communication may provide avenues for educating the girl on how to secure herself from harmful relationships, which will assist her in leading healthy intimate relationships. A responsible dad will empower his daughter with standards of how she should be treated, what to expect in romantic relationships, what to tolerate or not while in relationships, and when to say no.
This information will be meant to ensure that the girl remains secure and does not turn susceptible or target to ill-intentioned boys without suspecting it. Due to the strength of the relationship, the daughter is likely to trust in the dad’s guidance more than any other person’s word and abide by the caution.
Consequently, such a daughter is less likely to fall in danger of early sexual engagements, violence while dating, teenage pregnancies, and other risky sexual behaviors empowered with knowledge. As a result, such a girl is likely to sustain healthy and satisfying relationships centered on mutual respect, and in the future lead successful, lasting marriages.
Effects of lack of it
The opposite of the above is likely to occur among girls who experience poor or lack of dad-daughter relationships. For instance, a dad who is rarely at home, a non-caring dad, a violent dad or a drunkard may increase the chances of the daughter leading poor romantic relationships. For instance, a girl who rarely enjoys the presence of her father is likely to develop and sustain a belief that men cannot be trusted. She may be reluctant or insecure about entering into relationships with the fear of abandonment.
Also, the lack of dad-daughter relationship may deny the girl the chance of a fatherly love, which she will seek in her spouse. This places her at risk of being clingy to the man, and without knowledge, suffer maltreatment as the man might take advantage of her vulnerability. The probable consequence would be risks of unwanted pregnancies and suffering in violent intimate relationships.
Whether divorced or not, it’s important for the dad to devote himself to ensuring that she establishes sustainable relationships with the daughter as this will definitely affect her ability to lead healthy intimate relationships when time is due. Paternal neglect may expose the girl to costly consequences, such as the inability to gauge a healthy relationship and a host of other vulnerabilities. In fact, most successful ladies in relationships owe the triumph to a good relationship with the dad. For more information on this topic, visit the responsible fatherhood programs.
Last Updated on September 19, 2021