“I don’t understand why my daughter is so depressed?

“Why is my son hanging out with negative influences?”

“Why does my daughter date idiots?”

“Why does my son have such low self esteem?”

If you hear yourself or other parents asking these questions it might be the “dad effect!”

Article Author & Adolescent Expert Jim West interviewed by Fox 35 on the Dad Effect
Six Benefits of hangin’ with dad:

  1. Boys learn social skills | Just hanging out with their dad in groups and observing his interactions helps develop communication skills and confidence.
  2. Dad’s raise the bar | Daughters observe qualities in their father that are qualities she looks for in her boyfriend.  Dad’s plan ahead date nights with their daughters so they can anticipate the time with dad.  She can shop with mom for a dress or outfit periodically as well.  Dad can get the door to the restaurant or the car, take her by the arm, get her chair and treat her like a lady to raise the bar so hi the “idiot boyfriends” won’t be able to reach it!
  3. Teens have less delinquency and give in less to peer pressure if hanging out more with dad.  Going to sporting events, laser tag, the movies, picnics, swimming, skiing, weekend camping trips, etc.
  4. The more time dad’s spend with their boys directly correlates with how much college they complete!
  5. Dad’s who spend less quality time with their sons increases the risk of delinquency.
  6. Having family dinner as much as possible each week for communication and stay in the loop with your teenager.
Dad’s and daughters | Often fathers do not know what to do with their daughters and they just want to spend time with you, talk, have dinner and hear from you how proud you are of them and tell them how much you love them.  They need to be shown respect so they will expect a guy to respect them in turn!

Mom’s can increase their influence by allowing themselves to play along with their teens along with dad.  The earlier this starts the easier it is for their teen to accept this change in mom’s behavior.  Changing up routines every now and then and loosening up the rules randomly by having dinner in different places.

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Author: James L West, MA, LMHC, NCC, Orlando Communicator, Author, Coach and Licensed Mental Health Counselor