Fathers are such an important and wonderful part of a child’s life. For both little boys and little girls, Daddy is the first hero–the one boys want to grow up to be and the one girls want their husband to be like. The world is not perfect these days and many children are in situations where they are not with Daddy everyday–whether the separation is due to divorce, jobs or other situations.
There are many ways Dads can stay close to their children even when they are not present every day. Here are five ways to bridge the separation gap:
1. Phone Calls– hearing Dad’s voice and being able to talk to him in real time is priceless for kids when Dad is away. Often kids have questions or just want to hear his voice. A simple phone call goes a long way to keeping kids connected to an absent father. With today’s technology, video calling is often possible, letting kids see and hear Daddy.
2. Videos– in this day and age of technology, Dads can use smartphones to make fast yet priceless videos to send to their children when they cannot be together. Sometimes phone calls are not an option or far too fleeting for kids to cling to. For younger children, a video of Daddy reading a story to them can be a great connection at bedtime or any other time. For older kids, a video of Dad talking to them, telling a few corny jokes or telling about something interesting he saw/read that day can touch base and let them know Dad is still with them even when he is away.
3. Presents– sending gifts to kids from afar is as easy as shopping online and clicking the buttons. Kids enjoy receiving a package from Dad while he is away and will be able to think about him while they enjoy the toy, book or such that he picked out just for them. Knowing that Dad took the time to choose something fun and send it will bring warm feelings to the child until he or she can see their father in person again.
4. Letters– kids love to get mail and a card or note from Dad while he is not with them. It is an easy way to stay in touch. Timing mail to arrive often will give the child something to look forward to as a way to connect with Dad. Kids often like to keep the letters close to them to look at again and again.
5. Pictures– both Dad and the kids can send photos to each other, keeping everyone in the loop as to what is going on from day to day. With smartphones and email, this is very easily done for most people.
Keeping in touch on a daily basis is important for kids and parents, even if the physical presence is not always possible. Besides divorce separation, sometimes Dads simply work opposite shifts and cannot spend much awake time with the kids, or he may be a soldier and be deployed far away. Whatever the case may be, these tips can help Dads and children stay in touch daily and stay connected to each other’s lives. Of course, it is up to mothers and caregivers to help facilitate these connections. When the time comes that fathers and children can be together in person, the relationship is strong and there is no awkwardness or disconnection. The strong, loving presence of a father is important to raising a happy, healthy child.