Woman Raises Eyebrows By Saying 'Daddy Energy' Is The Most Attractive Trait A Man Can Have

Is it daddy energy or is it basic human decency?

couple dancing smiling together Lauren Hogue / Pexels

A woman named Rochelle Leigh shared her romantic proclivities with the wider TikTok community. Her definition of what makes a man worth dating lies less in what they look like and more in the energy that they bring to the relationship.

The woman raised eyebrows by claiming that ‘daddy energy’ is the most attractive trait a man can have.

Leigh asked the world, “Do you know what I find hotter than a man with a six-pack, or a man with a really good haircut, or a man with shiny toys, or whatever they use to like, flex these days? It’s a man with 'daddy energy.'”


She defines daddy energy as “providing energy, a man who’s just going to take care of you, not necessarily financially, but emotionally, and physically, and he just shows up. He’s a man of his word.” 

Her examples of showing up included that “He goes and grabs the door for you, not because he’s trying to impress you, but he literally does that for everybody. Or he checks on you, like, ‘Did you make it home okay?’”



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Leigh clarified that the ideal man with peak daddy energy would emotionally check in on you, not because he feels like he has to, but because he wants to. According to her, a major requirement of a man with daddy energy doing the work to show up in a partnership is to ask, “How are you feeling?” 

She offered context from her own personal romantic inclinations, saying, “I’m at the point now where it doesn’t even matter if you’re older, if you’re younger, if you have a six-pack or you don’t have a six-pack, if you have a full hairline or you don’t have a full hairline; it’s what’s your energy” that matters.

Photo: Achraf Alan / Pexels


Leigh made a solid point because, in the end, romantic attraction has less to do with physicality and more to do with how someone shows up in a relationship. 

“If you don’t have daddy energy, I can’t do it,” she continued. “I feel like I’ve been with too many men with baby energy, and it’s put me into a motherly place, where I almost don’t even want to have kids anymore.”

It appears as though Leigh is speaking to the emotional heavy lifting that often happens in straight relationships, where a woman is tasked with the labor of making sure the relationship runs smoothly, both on an emotional and practical level. 

A man named Niko on TikTok (@thedaddyacademy) heard what Leigh was saying and commended her for it. In a stitch video he made with Leigh’s original daddy energy post, he praised himself while explaining, “This is literally what my whole page is about.”



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“I couldn’t be happier that women are starting to catch on, starting to put verbiage to what it means to be a daddy, and for a guy to be in his daddy energy,” he stated. 

In terms of clarifying the meaning of a daddy, Niko said, “She did a great job,” before explaining his own terms for daddyhood. “Daddies are the life of the party. They’re fun, loving, caring, they take care of the women in their life.” He went on to qualify a daddy as someone who’s “emotionally intelligent [and] emotionally grounded.”

Niko spoke in definitives, saying that “one phrase women will always use when they’re with a guy who’s truly in his daddy, is they feel safe.”

There’s something to be said for the plausible amount of women who are with men who don’t make them feel safe, yet that’s an issue that’s larger than any kind of romantic energy, veering onto the damages caused by a society built around toxic masculinity and the need and whims of men.


Niko went on to say that a daddy will “truly calm an anxious woman who’s been through the wringer with guys who’ve treated her bad.” 

“Being a daddy has nothing to do with looks, has nothing to do with money,” he clarified. According to Niko, daddy energy is based on “the vibe that you go through life with.”

He believes there are “many different genres of daddies.” He describes these various genres as “athletic daddies, artsy daddies — they come in all shapes and sizes, but those core values, that is what makes them similar.”

Photo: Uriel Mont / Pexels 


Niko’s not wrong — there are many different types of 'daddies.'

The origin of the word “daddy” in a romantic and sexual light has existed since at least 1681. According to various sources of historical research, The Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang claims that sex workers used the word daddy to refer to older male customers. 

Using the word daddy is also rooted in queer culture; as a queer woman, I can affirm what Niko is saying. There are multiple iterations of daddies in this world, and not all of them are cis, straight men.

In the queer circles I run in, lesbians wear hats emblazoned with the word “daddy.” I have friends whom I solely call “daddy.” Many of the nonbinary people I know and love identify as having daddy energy. 


In an article published by Auostraddle, writer Ro White pays respects to the word's roots, which came from Black queer communities in the 1920s and 30s. According to their historical research, the word “daddy” was used to describe masculine-presenting women and transmasculine people. That daddy is used so widely today, that it’s jumped from subculture culture to the mainstream, is due to the existence of Black queer women and Black trans people. 

As cultures morph and regenerate, language is inevitably bound to shift. “Daddy energy” might mean different things to the different groups who use it, yet its power comes from what it represents: Acting with basic human decency, and practicing deep emotional care.

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Alexandra Blogier is a writer on YourTango's news and entertainment team. She covers relationships, pop culture analysis and all things to do with the entertainment industry.