Hey True Girl Dads!
It's about time we offered some tips to you! We imagine you have just a few questions about your tween daughter, like “Is she really from another planet?” In this blog series, Bob Gresh, author of 8 Great Dates for Dads and Daughters will answer some of the most frequently asked questions we receive from Dads.
How Can I Spend Quality Time With My Daughter If I Really Don’t Have That Much Time to Spare?
The Pew Research Center conducted the American Time Use Survey in 2012 and discovered that fathers spend 7 hours with their children per week – much of that time involves technology (meaning you’re parked in front of the tv or computer). Convicting much? We must make time! Simple as that. She needs you! Yes, work and responsibilities are an important and necessary part of life. However, if your daughter feels that work is more important to you than she is, it might be a good time to reevaluate your schedule and priorities. Ask her. I dare you.
Consider when you really do have time to be fully focused on her. Block that time off and plan intentional activities or events and put them on your calendar in advance. It is so easy to become wrapped up in work, busyness and the full-plate that comes with parenthood, that we forget how to slow down, have fun and enjoy life. Put away your laptop, turn off your cell phone, and genuinely be with her. Even if you’re not able to have the quantity of time with your daughter that you’d like, make sure the time you do spend is quality time.
Using the time, energy and resources you do have, rekindle your creativity and get in touch with the child inside you. Capitalize on her interests. Do what you know she would enjoy. Maybe you should go camping or fishing for a weekend. Have mornings free? Take her out to breakfast once a week before school and work begin. She won’t remember the deadline you had or the make-or-break meeting you were stressing about, but she will remember the intentional times you made her your sole focus and priority. She just needs you. All of you. Your focus, energy and attention. Make the time. When she is 18 and pulling out of your driveway for college you will wish you had more of it.