5 Lessons that I’ve Learned from My Daddy-Daughter Dates

BY: - 1 Nov '13 | Parenting

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Do you have daddy-daughter dates? If not, you should. They are part of the foundation of a great daddy-daughter relationship. Last night, we had our first daddy-daughter date since our daughter turned 13. And we had a great time!

Over the years we’ve had some daddy-daughter outings, dates, and fun times together. But now, it feels like it has a little more meaning. It is a little more crucial.  Play dates are a thing of the past, and on the horizon (a few years away!) are real dates.

I not only enjoyed myself on our daddy-daughter date, I was also very observant, and very reflective.  I learned a few things, a few lessons from daddy-daughter dates.  Lessons for myself as well as some things I can teach my daughter about dating.


Bledsoe11) How to dress for a date.

One of the first things we covered was how to dress. For our date, we were going to an NBA basketball game…. so hi-top sneakers were cool. Although casual sporty gear was doable, we wanted her to make sure her appearance reflected well on her. She cleaned her hi-tops, did her hair and had some of her favorite (skinny) jeans ready to go.

2) How to walk with your date.

We had to park a few blocks from the fieldhouse, so we had a nice walk downtown before the game. There were all kinds of “characters” and people going about their business. I wanted her to be aware of her surroundings, where we parked, and how to maintain personal space boundaries when walking with her date and among others.

3) How to be treated on a date.

Of course as her dad, I treated her with respect. I asked her to wait in the car while I took care of paying for parking, I opened doors, and helped her to her seat. When she was unable to see because of people standing I gave up my seat. Most importantly, we left when we said we would, and arrived home when we said we would. I even called her mother (my wife) to let her know we were enroute. 🙂

4) How to have conversation

Our conversation was all over the place at first. She was part of a group of youth entrepreneurs… so she was able to be a part of the pre-game warm-ups on the court with the players. So that dominated the conversation at first.  Later, I found myself answering all kinds of questions, and a lot of whys.  But I never got frustrated, even if it interrupted the game. We both asked questions of each other, and had a really good back and forth dialogue.

5) How to be present.

This is where challenges come that we didn’t have while dating. Technology! I admit, I was distracted early on trying to share the pictures via Twitter and Facebook that she took on the floor sitting on the team bench.  But for the most part, my phone was in my pocket, and we were engaged. Which means she’ll probably allow me to take her on more dates. 🙂

BMWK Fam – What are some lessons you can teach your kids through daddy-daughter or mommy-son dates?

About the author

Jackie Bledsoe, Jr. wrote 62 articles on this blog.

Jackie is an author, blogger, and speaker who helps men better love their wives and lead their families. He is the creator of The 7 Rings of Marriage™. You can receive his latest BMWK posts in your inbox, plus his latest marriage and parenting posts from around the web by subscribing to his weekly newsletter!


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2 WordPress comments on “5 Lessons that I’ve Learned from My Daddy-Daughter Dates

  1. Theoneuturn2

    My father took me and my sisters on our first date when we turned 13. He continued to do so in the following years. It set the standard of expectations for me when on a date. I have been married four years and still tell my husband thank you every time he opens a door for me. . . I forget when he picks up the tab sometimes (oops) but im a work in progress. Having the time with my dad and the years of dates was amazing, and seeing that not all girls my age had this relationship with their dad made me appreciate it more. I like to think the manners I learned from my dad spill over in to my marriage.

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Attention All Mothers: 4 Tips on Taking Care of Yourself

BY: - 8 Nov '13 | Parenting

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This past weekend I had an opportunity to attend a retreat just for moms. The purpose of the retreat was to force moms to do something most of us rarely ever do: take time out for ourselves and make ourselves a priority. Some people may think they make themselves a priority, but they really don’t.

Can you think of ten things you love to do — without the kids or spouse? When was the last time you truly did something because YOU wanted to do it? When was the last time you added yourself to your own calendar? Do you even remember the person you were before you became a mom? Or have you become a victim of identity theft due to motherhood?

There are so many reasons or excuses we make as to why we can’t find even 15 minutes in a day to pour love into ourselves as mothers. Most of the time we either feel that self-care equals selfishness, or that we have guilt around anything that doesn’t revolve around our children. I’ve told my story about losing myself in motherhood, and that’s when I realized that I hardly ever put myself on my own list of priorities once I became a mom. I had to learn and understand the importance of self-care, the importance of learning how to FLY (first love yourself). Self-care is not something that has to be a grand, elaborate ordeal. It doesn’t even have to be something that costs you money. This retreat was all about learning ritualistic self-care: it’s strategic, meaning you take time to do something for yourself every single day (read, write, exercise, bike, craft, etc.).

There were moms from all walks of life that attended — single moms, married moms, divorced moms — all with the same common goal: to pour some love back into ourselves so that we could return home and be more loving for our families. Many people made sacrifices to be there, one mom even came straight from her dialysis treatment (that she has to go to three times a week) because she understood that she needed to do this for herself. Taking time to love and care for yourself is the best gift you can give your child. Why? Because when we are more relaxed, nurtured, and loved, we can then give that to our children. We can’t give them what we don’t have, which is often times what we try to do.

There were a few key areas that were talked about in order for us to adapt, and take home to incorporate into our own lives.

Build your own community: A while back I did an interview with Kym Whitley and she talked about how she had to rally her friends and create her own village when she decided to adopt her son. She knew that as a single mom, she was going to need the support and assistance of her close friends. This idea continued to be addressed throughout the weekend. If you’re a single mom or just don’t have the support of family members close by so that you can take an occasional mommy break, how can you build your own village? Every mom needs her own village.

Overcome the excuses: Taking care of yourself as a mom is vital to the well-being of our children. Stop making time, money or lack of resources a reason as to why you don’t invest in yourself physically, emotionally or spiritually. While times are hard on everyone right now, there are still ways that you can take time to love yourself. You may not have money to hire a baby sitter. But can you swap services with another mom so that you can go for a walk by yourself, or just have a few hours of peace and quiet in the house by yourself? This goes back to building your own community. Look around for free events that you can attend, and utilize discount deal sites like Groupon and Living Social for steep discounts on activities to pamper yourself.

Commit to yourself: Once you’ve created your village of support and have overcome the common excuse of lack of money, or lack of community, you have to make it important enough that you keep your own commitment to yourself. Just like you strive to keep the promises you make to others, be sure to keep the promises you make to yourself. If you say you’re going to exercise twice a week, then don’t break that commitment. If you say you want to take a cooking class, then commit to doing that. We have to set the example of how we want others to treat us.

Date yourself: We talk about the importance of dating our spouses and dating our children. But when was the last time you took yourself on a date? Once you’ve made the commitment to yourself, be sure to create a system around it so that it becomes ritualistic. What are the hobbies or things you loved to do before you became a mom? What are some interests you have that you haven’t found time to pursue? Set a schedule, and don’t forget to add you to your calendar so that you can follow through with it.

This retreat was powerful because it reiterated just how essential it is for me, as a mom to practice ritualistic self-care. Yes, it can be challenging at first. But with the right community and systems in place, it is definitely doable and should be non-negotiable. There is nothing selfish about making time to focus on ourselves when it can only make us a better mother for our children.

BMWK: Do you take time out pour love into yourself? What are some challenges you have around that?

About the author

Christine St. Vil wrote 153 articles on this blog.

Christine St.Vil is co-author of the Whose Shoes Are Your Wearing: 12 Steps to Uncovering the Woman You Really Want to Be. A happy wife to an amazing hubby of 8 years, and homeschooling mother of three, she teaches moms how to FLY (First Love Yourself). She uses her corporate background to work with women who are ready to start a new business, accelerate their career growth & design a life they love. She's on a mission to help moms to battle the mom guilt epidemic, so they can begin to put themselves first on their never-ending list of priorities.


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