As most dads do, I adore my three kids. But as most dads do, I second-guess how well I’’m doing. From tidbits to full-blown philosophies, advice for dads is everywhere.

“Don’’t be your child’’s friend, be their dad.”
“Time is flying by, enjoy every moment with your kids.”
“Nothing is more important than your child’’s education, make sure you save enough for college.
“Be firm.”
“Spark their imagination.”
“Teach them independence.”
“Teach them to be team players.”

So which of the above or thousands of other pieces of advice are the most important? I can feel the anxiety rising up in me as I type. After all, being a dad is definitely one the most important earthly roles of my life. I would say that most guys feel the same way.

We guys can be a little insecure, especially when it comes to our performance as dads. So although dad probably loves grill tools and homemade cards for Father’’s Day, the greater gift is the assurance that someone notices the things he is doing right.

What Dads Really Want

For Father’’s Day this year, compose a letter by filling in the following blanks in the letter below. Despite the fact that he probably won’’t respond to you with tears in his eyes and a “”Thank you for shoring up my anxious soul,” your words matter to him even more than you probably know.

You may be thinking, “But there are a lot of things he isn’’t doing right as a dad.” Don’’t worry about that. Chances are he already knows. Trust me, affirming him for what he is doing right almost always has the pleasant side effect of lessening and/or improving the things he is doing wrong. So, go ahead, this Father’’s Day give the dads in your life a little verbal affirmation. You’’ll be glad you did.

Sample Letter


I want to thank you for the way you love ______________________________.

I admire the way you always ________________________________________.

It makes me laugh, the way you________________________________.

Thank you for providing by________________________________.

My favorite memory of you as a dad this year was when_________________.

Thanks for being such a _________________, _________________, and ________________ dad.


This article has been adapted from its original publication on Go visit Married People for more articles and ideas to help you in your marriage.