Are you a Man or a mouse?
My eldest fairy tale is female...Mila. In just a few days she is turning 11. I have grown increasingly aware of her silent attempts to get more of my attention. This is that potentially awkward time for many girls & dads where they are not sure what to do with each other. In my mind, she is my baby. Physically she almost looks me straight in the eyes. She asks interesting questions & probes for a higher level of emotional interaction. She likes to engage in more complex behavioral matters. She is growing new body parts. That means I cant just throw her around like we used to when she was younger. (We are open & very comfortable around any topic, so there is no discomfort there. In our home...my brain falls out of my face so everything natural goes).
The battle of the girls are growing. I have 3 of them & 1 boy. (thank god for my son, he keeps their feet on the ground). The girls keep score on Daddies attention. My son couldn't be phased...he knows he's in a different league of activity...we do crazy shit together that the girls are never interested in so he's happy. Mila knows how much I love her, how invested I am. But that is not what she is asking any more...The other girls are just still happy to know that they are princess no.2 & princess no.3 but Mila is probing for a different affirmation now...
She want to know what most dads are not even aware of...
Am I worth fighting for?
In my humble opinion, this is the single most important question that every girl wants only their Dad to answer at some point. Every woman that I have ever worked with from their teens & older that had "Daddy Issues", are looking for the answer to this 1 question from every male she meets. I have never seen or heard a girl turn to their mother to answer that question. That is a Dads job. That is a dads place. Most dads are about as emotionally sharp as a a table spoon. Once their baby is morphing into a woman...they drop the ball.
If a dad can handle this period with the same confident & spontaneous hand as when she was playing hide & seek with you in her diaper...she will feel less awkward in her persistence on the matter. Girls have always been my best friends at school so my "girl-friends", made me subtly aware of this matter over many years of listening to their conversations. I understand them in a special way, (if that is possible of course) but even for me, this new phase with Mila asked for some delicate changes from me. Princess no 2&3 has sensed that my affirmations with Mila has changed & they want in on it! Their battle, as small as they are confirms a demand of who really holds daddy's heart. I can explain myself blue that I love each of them like they are my only...they just continue to add up every asset they have to compare with one another. My son (8 years old) just shakes his head & calls them stupid...
Maybe some dads will call it stupid too...& yet we demonstrate this very thing when we go out to find a girl...& hunt them...& fight for them & demonstrate to them, through many attempts that no matter what they do...no matter how crazy their behavior...that they are worth fighting for!
It is not so foreign when we hear it like that, is it? If you don't answer this question...she will simply find some one who will. If we dig deep enough inside our dumb-ass-male-brain, you will find something that works for you.