31 Things I Want My Daughter to Hear From Her Dad {I Didn’t…}

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1 in 4 children in America are raised without fathers. I was one of them.


Things children need to hear their dads say

I grew up in a single-parent home. My mom had the difficult challenge of raising my siblings and me on her own. Only as a mom can I truly appreciate and admire how she managed four children alone. 


I don’t think about my father often, but holidays like Father’s Day bring some thoughts of what it may have been like to live in a two-parent household (I get that two doesn’t always mean better, every situation is unique), but I wonder. Especially when I hear songs like Luther Vandross’s Dance with My Father.



It’s a beautiful song yet it’s sad and emotional. It touches me in a place that is unfamiliar. 


I say unfamiliar because I can emphasize with someone experiencing loss (most of us can) but I’ll never know the emotional loss of a father.


While single moms everywhere are doing amazing at raising children on their own. It makes me wonder how the world of children raised by single moms (like myself) may be different if they heard their father’s say (and mean it) these phrases.




  1. I love you.

  2. You are beautiful.

  3. You are amazing.

  4. I smile more because of you.

  5. I believe in you.

  6. I care about you.

  7. You are strong.

  8. You are unbreakable.

  9. You can do it.

  10. I’ve got your back.

  11. You can count on me.

  12. You can trust me.

  13. Loving you right now means telling you ‘no’. 

  14. No. That outfit just won’t do. Go Change.

  15. Did you do your homework?

  16. I want you to do better than me (in life). 

  17. Listen to your mother.

  18. I love your mother. 

  19. Be kind to everyone.

  20. You are intelligent.

  21. Can I get a hug goodnight?

  22. How can I stop those tears?

  23. Let’s make it better.

  24. Keep at it. We don’t give up.

  25. There will never be a mate that I’ll think is worthy of you. 

  26. Where are you going?

  27. Be home by __o’clock. I need to see your face before I close my eyes.

  28. My life is better because of you.

  29. Give more than you receive.

  30. Let’s pray together.

  31. This Father’s Day gift is great (even if it’s not).


This isn’t an all-inclusive list of things we should hear from our fathers but it is a list of phrases, advice, and questions, I think many active, involved, and loving fathers would have for their children. 



I rarely ever seen father’s in action until I gave birth to my daughter. My husband is an amazing dad with his words and his actions. He and my daughter have a bond that is beautiful and I get to see it blossom more each day. 


While I never felt I was lacking (missing what you don’t have in your youth isn’t much thought about until you get older); however, I am immensely grateful that I finally get to see the love of a father up close and personal.


As I watch the father-daughter bond grow and deepen, I’m left wondering if when she is old enough to hear and appreciate Luther’s song (and I hope she does) if it will touch her in a place I couldn’t even begin to comprehend.


How about you? Did you grow up in a single-parent home? Do you think hearing these phrases and others could have made a difference in your life?


31 Things every child needs to hear their father say


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Tiffany Green

Hi, I'm Tiffany! I'm a doula trained, scientist turned mom entrepreneur, with a master's degree in family life and youth development. I use my education, technical skills, and my love of organization to help pregnant women and new moms crush overwhelm so that managing family life is an adventure - instead of a hassle.


Everyone keeps telling you that motherhood is hard; I want you to know that you're capable of doing hard things! I'm Tiffany (mom, wife, sleep enthusiast) and I'm committed to helping you organize and manage family life intentionally and gracefully, even when it feels hard, because I know you don't need to be perfect to be great.

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