About 2 am this past Tuesday morning, while driving straight through overnight from Memphis home to San Antonio, my wife (and fellow dating coach) Emily and I found ourselves with a straight highway ahead and calm, moonlit skies overhead.
So we started talking about our lives together, both now and in the future.
And as we did, we played a random string of smooth, dare I say “romantic” tracks over the sound system.
Somewhere along the way, John Mayer’s amazing song “Daughters” began to play…right as a brief lull in our conversation had set it up perfectly.
It had been a few years since I had actually heard that song, and I had forgotten how much I liked it:
Fathers, be good to your daughters
Daughters will love like you do
Girls become lovers who turn into mothers
So mothers, be good to your daughters too
When you have a daughter someday, will you be one of those guys who plans to buy a shotgun when she turns 13?
Or will you be confident that she’ll have the skills and presence of mind to make solid decisions and attract great guys to be her boyfriends in school, and ultimately to be her long-term partner someday?
Show me a guy who’s shopping for guns as a “boy deterrent” and I’ll show you a guy who pretty much views women around his own age as sex objects and nothing more.
Well, we as humans tend to project our view of the world on everyone else…as if somehow that’s “the way it is”, generally speaking.
So if we view women primarily as a means of sexual fulfillment, we’ll likely assume that every boy our daughter meets will be after “only one thing”.
And see, it’s not that we won’t CARE about our daughters.
It’s just that John Mayer sort of hit the nail on the head: Daughters will love like we do.
That goes for how they love THEMSELVES and how they love US, as well as whoever it is they eventually fall IN LOVE with.
This is for real.
For example, the truth is I don’t really need to know if a guy’s packing heat on the front porch or not.
I can tell how he feels about women in general by how his daughter feels about them.
You see, your little girl will probably have no problem recognizing that she’s a red-blooded human being just like you are…capable of bestowing any number of amazing gifts—feminine or otherwise—upon this big, wonderful world.
But if you’ve been a primarily sex-focused guy, your worldview won’t only be projected onto the GUYS in her life…it just might be projected onto HER.
And she’ll resent you for that, realizing she has so much more to offer.
Want a quick “head check” to see where you really are on this?
Ask yourself this question. Will your expectations for your daughter’s future success be any different than if she were your son?
If so, it could be because when you get right down to it, you view HER primarily in terms of her sexuality, as you have every other girl you’ve known.
But since she’s your daughter and you love her in a different way, you think more in terms of “protecting” her from the “predatory” sexual advances of all the boys out there.
And daughters will love like you do.
If, on the other hand, you have long-since recognized the incredible depth that women can bring to your life beyond sex itself, then you’ll love your daughter perhaps no less or no more…but DIFFERENTLY, indeed.
Your “Big Four” Masculine presence will inspire her rather than limit her.
She’ll understand the power of her femininity from a more holistic perspective—especially if you’ve been in her life all along to MODEL how that works in your relationship with her mother.
You’ll expect, encourage and indeed EMPOWER her to greatness rather than causing her to feel she simply needs to stay away from “getting into trouble” with boys.
In fact, if you’ve really got a solid handle on all of this, you may even look forward to her experiencing a healthy sexual relationship with a great guy someday instead of loathing it.
Look man, this may all sound preposterous, but if you’ve thought a certain way your entire life, you can’t expect to have the birth of a baby make an overnight difference.
Meanwhile, why do some dating coaches recommend going after women who have had terrible or even non-existent relationships with their fathers?
Because you can get them into bed FAST in many cases, that’s why.
Never mind the fact that such women often have equally terrible or even non-existent SELF-ESTEEM. After all, this is the “use ‘em and leave ‘em” mindset I’m referring to here.
Sure, it all may sound like the ultimate “get laid quick” genius plan right now. But you may have a daughter someday.
And daughters will love like you do.
So what’s it going to be? Are you going to view life as it happens six inches away from your face, or are you going to take the longer-term view of a much wiser man?
If the latter, your reward will be much richer…I promise.
On the other hand, as guys like David Shade begin_of_the_skype_highlighting end_of_the_skype_highlighting and I have said often, women who love and respect their dads make great partners.
A BIG PART of why a woman would indeed love and respect her dad is exactly because he didn’t imply—either consciously or subconsciously—by how he treated her that she was a “sex object”.
Instead, he modeled what finding a great guy is going to look like for her someday.
He brought the “Big Four”* to the table instead of simply putting food on it, like some dad’s tragically believe is their only real “job”.
And in turn both the little girl AND her mom were simultaneously empowered. Both were inspired to bring joy, love, laughter, nurturing and caring into the circle.
So not only will a great wife bring happiness and joy to your life, you can bet that your daughter will very likely always be a source of great pride to you as well.
Daughters will love like you do.
And don’t kid yourself. Nothing breathes life into YOUR being, having effectively LED as a real “Big Four” man, than to have the women you love—be they your lover or your offspring—lavish your world with feminine gifts:
Boys, you can break
You'll find out how much they can take
Boys will be strong
And boys soldier on
But boys would be gone without the warmth from
A woman’s good, good heart
Man, it’s no wonder that John Mayer has a history of attracting some seriously amazing women, right?
So if you are a father to a daughter right now, let this article speak to you.
And if you’re not a little girl’s daddy just yet, you may be someday.
How you view your interactions with women now will not only decide what your long-term relationship with one (if any) will look like, it’ll shape what kind of father you are.
And it’s a 50/50 chance that when you become a father, it’ll be to a daughter.
My wish for you is that you’ll look forward to it rather than dreading it…either way.
After all, as the father of both a son AND a daughter, and step-dad to another son, I can tell you first hand that they’re all amazing and uniquely special in so many multi-faceted ways…as is my relationship with them.
And the truth is, all three of them—regardless of gender—will for better or worse love like Emily and I do…and that will be largely dependent on my lead as the man of the house.
Indeed, as we motored into the moonlight somewhere between Texarkana and Dallas a few nights go, our three kids—the two boys and yes, one precious girl—were sound asleep behind us.
I couldn’t help but think that with a pair of dating and relationship coaches for parents they would each get every opportunity to have a great shot at getting the male/female relationship thing right in their lives…all three of them.
And we’re certainly not only wishing the best for them, we’re all about actively demonstrating how to make that happen.
Who knows? Maybe at least one of them was just pretending to be asleep, watching Emily and I share some quality “windshield time” together…
* The "Big Four" traits that generally attract women to men are masculinity as women define it, confidence, ability to make a woman feel safe and comfortable in one's presence, and character.