wecandoitLooking back over the last five decades, and growing up in the 1950s, I realize how different my father treated my sister and I compared to how my mother treated us.

My father helped raise my sister and me during the women’s movement. My mother was considered a traditional mother, and she desperately wanted to use her talents as an interior decorator.

My mother did a great amount of charity work while raising four children. She was considered to be a beautiful woman who dressed to the nines and designed a gorgeous home, even our ketchup was served on a silver platter.

As children we were expected to be dressed up for dinner when my father came home, as it was extremely formal growing up on the East coast. We were straight out of the Leave it to Beaver television show.

My father believed his daughters would go to college and find their husbands who would help support them. My mother was very upset with my father’s attitude about women.

We had many challenging moments trying to educate my father to become a more modern thinker, ridding himself of male chauvinistic ideals.

I remember when my father and mother would visit my husband and me my dad was astonished at my husband’s domestic skills. We were a dual career home where both partners participated in full-time jobs.

My sister also had a home similar to mine. My father was bombarded with a new way of life by watching his other son-in-law participate at home as well.

Eventually, my father’s lenses changed drastically and our conversations shifted when he would ask about my career first before anything else.

It was a new generation and roles were finally changing.

Over the years I saw a shift in my profession, too. Attitudes of fathers who were raising daughters had a much more open-minded perspective about the duties of a wife.

These fathers, who I had counseled over the years, wanted their daughters to be fatherdaughterindependent, self sufficient, and well educated. Their thoughts concerning women’s rights changed immensely.

My father taught me to choose a profession that was rewarding and I was passionate about. His words of wisdom became a great lesson in my life. I thank my father for believing in me, and my sister for empowering us to be the best we can be.

For every father out there that has a daughter, enlighten and empower her to be as successful as you would expect your son to be.