A few weeks ago, I posed this question online: “When you look back at your childhood, what did you need to hear from your father?” The 100+ responses from men and women, let me know that these adults placed a certain amount of value, whether it was high or low, upon what their fathers said and didn’t say to them as they were growing up with or without the presence of their father.
Based upon the response, I heard the pain and anguish associated with not receiving positive words from their father or I heard the strength and resolve connected to uplifting words. It’s not uncommon knowledge that children want the approval of their parents; and specifically, approval of their fathers. There’s plenty of data to suggest the magnitude of a father’s presence.
When a father understands his worth, he conducts himself differently for his children’s livelihood in an effort to build self worth in his children. It extends further than making sure that food is on the table, clothes are on the back, and a roof is over the head. The lens through which our children see the world is, directly, tied to the deposits of a lifetime overflowing with praise or criticism.
He recognizes the lie of “Sticks and stones may break my bones. But, names will never hurt me.” He understands that “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger” according to Proverbs 15:1. He remembers the connection between his legacy and his behavior are interwoven.
What he says matters!
How he says it matters!
When he says it matters!
Why he says it matters!
When the what, how, when, and why are in alignment, trust his child’s world is better off for it! As an adult, when his child answers a random question online, positive memories bring tears of joy. Well done, Dad! Well done!