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Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters: 10 Secrets Every Father Should Know

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  4,795 ratings  ·  629 reviews
In today’s increasingly complicated world, it’s often difficult for parents to connect with their daughters–and especially so for fathers. In this unique and invaluable guide, Dr. Meg Meeker, a pediatrician with more than twenty years’ experience counseling girls, reveals that a young woman’s relationship with her father is far more important than we’ve ever realized. To b ...more
Paperback, 267 pages
Published August 28th 2007 by Ballantine Books (first published August 30th 2006)
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Average rating 4.15  · 
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 ·  4,795 ratings  ·  629 reviews

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Feb 22, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I wanted to like this book. The title drew me in, and the basic premise (that daughters need dads to stand up for them in a world that tends to consume young women and to provide them a role model of how a decent male behaves) was something I could get behind. However as I started reading I was increasingly disappointed. Several things put me off or marred the book for me:

1. The condescending attitude towards both men and young women. Dads are stereotyped to be basically a witless bunch of hyper
Jul 16, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
As the father of a young daugher, I was hooked by the title, but extremely disappointed. The book offered very little practical information for me. I found it extremely preachy and too religous to be useful (I know this is not a popular opinion these days, so please save the hate mail). I was extremely put off by the author making large leaps in converting isolated anecdotal evidence into broad sweeping generalizations dsguised as research (although there are some actual statistics in the book, ...more
Oct 06, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was looking for a good book that I vehemently disagree with. This is such a book.

This book was written by an intelligent person that I have a philosophical disagreement with. I came to find this book through colleagues. It was highly recommended. I do recommend this book but for different reasons.
It was recommended to me as a guidebook for fathers for understanding, relating to and knowing the role they play in their daughters lives. I recommend it as a critical study to identify what your per
Alicia Mitsch
Sep 12, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Wow. After slogging through two chapters, I have learned that my daughter will become a cracked-out junkie who will sell her body for drugs and a sense of self-worth, all because she lacks a father in her life. While I did agree with a few of the author's points, overall, I felt she was making a point that was somewhat close-minded and offensive. Yes, our media and culture have oversexualized our children; everything from clothing to television portrays the idea that every girl aged seven to fif ...more
Oct 06, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Portions of this book deserve 5 stars, others 1 star—at least in accordance with my sensibilities, politics, and personal philosophy. Others will have different ratings in accordance with their own. In the course of my fathering a freshman adolescent, I have found myself subject to objections, criticisms, and detachment quite unfamiliar to me a couple of years ago. Children grow up and seek independence. This is to be expected, even desired. But I began to ask myself, “is my work finished here?” ...more
Natalie Snapp
Dec 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
OK, if you have a little girl, or a big girl, YOU MUST READ THIS. If you are the father of a little girl, run, don't walk to the bookstore. If you are a mother, don't let the title deceive you - you will want to read it as well. We recommended this to a friend and he just told us it completely changed his views on raising his new baby girl. If this book were issued to all new parents of little gals, our girls would not face the challenges they face today. I am a staunch believer in preserving th ...more
Peter Jones
Nov 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There is not much written on the unique relationship between fathers and daughters. This book fills in that gap. It is excellent. Perhaps most striking is that she reinforces gender stereotypes, which is a good things and encourages fathers to be the authority in their daughters lives while also loving them. She gives a lot of excellent examples from her own practice. All fathers with daughters could benefit from it.
Mar 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: parenting
Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters By Dr. Meghan Meeker was first published in 2006. Technology since the time of this books publication has advanced so exponentially I could only imagine some of the advice Dr. Meeker would give in 2019 would be much more extreme than it was in 2006. I am the father of two young girls and this book is incredibly powerful, a lot of tremendous advice is given thru out this entire book, at times its a bit out of my arena in dealing with things like teens, death of a ...more
Jul 26, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book has become one of THE most important, life-changing, books that I've ever read, and it's not even written for me as a's written for my husband. Lane is already an amazing dad, and I couldn't imagine anything that could make him a better father, but just from reading the first few chapters we've learned some important new parenting stratagies. We've been reminded of some that we'd forgotten about and we've recommitted to some that we already had in place and have also spent ...more
Aug 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My husband read this book over the summer and it transformed his parenting! He has always been a wonderful father, but this has really helped open his eyes to how vital he is to our daughter's emotional - and physical - well-being and health. He has applied what he's learned with our preteen daughter and all I can think is that I wish my father was able to parent me like this, it would have prevented a lot of pain, heartbreak and tangles of sin. I would have felt treasured and loved. My father d ...more
Feb 26, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book provided very few real insights, and those were backed up with mostly anecdotal evidence. There were some hard facts (study results, etc.), but the reference material was more revealing than this book. I felt like some of the material was presented in a disingenuous way. For example, the information regarding sex education standards seemed like it was cherry-picked in an attempt to shock the reader's sense of decency. Furthermore, studies about STDs and depression seemed to be used to ...more
May 12, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: parenting
I was willing to like this book, but ultimately I found it highly disappointing. I had hoped for a book that would be about the psychology behind father-daughter relationships. However, that's not what I got.

The author uses a very fire-and-brimstone approach to parenting. Each chapter was filled with examples to scare fathers. She often used the fact that she was a doctor to back what seemed like her personal beliefs (though she did often use sources) and not fact. Every chapter seemed to includ
On some levels this book was disturbing, not because the content was incorrect, but because the facts presented are themselves disturbing. In one section it gives a sample dialogue of what a teenage girl might be thinking as she becomes a victim of anorexia. In another she talks about the statistics and consequences of teenage sexual activity, focusing on STDs for a large part of it. It seems that each new chapter presents another disturbing issue that I don't really want to deal with, yet is a ...more
Jun 30, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone with Daughters, Especially Fathers
Recommended to Michael by: Matt Shill
Shelves: non-fiction, family
Without a doubt, one of the best books I have read that has already begun to help me as a father of daughters. Meeker did a fantastic job of clarifying the differences of mothers vs. fathers and why fathers are so important in the lives of their daughters. Obviously while our daughters are young, they are impressionable, but it is at all years of their lives that we as fathers can and will have an affect on them.

I thoroughly enjoyed the statistics that were included, even if they were beyond sca
Engin Yapici
Jul 27, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book is pure poison. The author is a conservative religious person with tons of outdated opinions and she tries to scare you with horror stories. The book is heavy on religion; in fact it has a whole chapter dedicated to it.

Moreover, the author dedicated another chapter to anorexia, and kept talking about it throughout the book. I don't understand why. She treats it like it is the biggest risk of our century for our daughters, which is of course laughable. She doesn't even mention obesity.

Jul 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: knowledge
Every father with a daughter needs to read this book. Every man who's thinking about having children, needs to read this book. Every wife who has a daughter, needs to tell their husband to read this book. And every married man should read this book. This book brings up topics, you may think are common sense, but they are severely underserved. It brings the stats and personal stories to justify the argument the author is making. It made a believer out of me, and I definitely will read this over a ...more
Joseph R.
Jan 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lot of ink (digital and actual) has been put down about the relationships between fathers and sons. But what about fathers' relationships to their daughters? The literature is rather slim. This book provides some practical advice and motivation to fathers so that they will be more involved in their daughters' lives, even from an early age.

The book emphasizes a point that is generally neglected: Fathers are a role model to their daughters of what men should be like. Daughters will measure guys
Dec 13, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: parenting
I was a little late getting to this book since my oldest daughter is almost 17. But I'm glad I read it.

Meeker is a doctor who works with teen girls, so she's heard many firsthand stories. Some of these stories are featured in the book. They're pretty eye-opening.

This book is written from a Christian perspective so will resonate more with Christians than those of other faiths. That said, the medical consequences of certain activities are indisputable. Meeker covers these in a tasteful (and impact
Chad Warner
Dec 20, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fathers,parents
A practical guide to raising well-rounded girls, written for fathers. It’s based on research and the experience of the author, pediatrician Dr. Meeker. She tells fathers how to help their daughters prepare for and encounter a variety of issues. Topics include sex, body image, diet, alcohol, drugs, religion, and the father’s relationship with his daughter. There are plenty of stats and anecdotes to illustrate the points.

I realize this book is written for fathers, but Dr. Meeker overemphasized the
Isaac Sevlie
Jul 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very compelling narrative full of stories, studies, and grounded reasoning. I will be sure to recommend this book and most likely read it again!
Aug 01, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: christian, parenting
This is a very scary book! As a man who has a 3mo old daughter, this is a horror book to beat all horror books! But if you can make it past the doom and gloom there are a lot of good ideas and excellent advice to be had. Be a man, be there for your daughter, and be a parent, not a friend. I was leaning to four stars for most of book, but I really wish the author took a clearer stance on the importance of Christianity. Having faith is way more than just statistically relevant and important for yo ...more
Garret Shields
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Holy cow! What a book! I really am so grateful to have read this book as a young father. And, while the book is focused on raising daughters, much of it applies to raising any and all kids. I especially enjoyed the opening chapter, which opened my eyes as to the situation facing our kids these days, while also making me feel empowered that I can actually make a difference, the strongest difference in the lives of my kids! Then, the middle chapters discuss specific issues, including self-esteem, ...more
Feb 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Dads with daughters of any age.
There's probably a lot of information here that is intuitive to wives. And some information we sorta knew as husbands. But to see the clinical data that supports the need for dads to be involved in their daugthers lives is really shocking. Being highly involved in our girls life eliminates the need for them to go outside the home to find approval, self confidence and love. A strong relationship with their father helps their sense of self-worth and delays or prevents all sorts of antisocial behav ...more
Steve Hebert
Aug 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First and foremost, I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

The author presents a compelling case for the various roles that fathers fill in a daughters life. She does so by relying on facts and anecdotes from her career and she doesn't rely on platitudes (religious or otherwise) that tend to plague this genre. She also writes with a palpable passion for the topic and relates her reasoning quite well.

Reviews of this book tend to run hot or cold. If you are looking for a book to agree with, you are look
Legacy Dad
Jan 30, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fathers With Daughters
Shelves: legacy-reading
Great book for fathers to get into the minds of their daughters and understand what they need, why they need it and at what ages it is most important to be extra active and diligent in our daughters lives.

This book showed me the research and studies on why certain areas of parenting are more important then others in the lives of our daughters. It further shows why the passive and democratic parenting styles of the 70's and 80's were wrong and how daughters of today need to be parented.

Aug 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Every father, most mothers
I recommend this book for every father who has, will have or may have a daughter. It emphasizes the important role that fathers play in their daughter's lives, their values and their morality. I even might venture so far as to say that a failed daughter is the result of a failed father. It is also important to remember that some women do well in spite of their fathers. All this, however, does not discount the importance and usefulness of a father to a boy, but just to emphasize the importance of ...more
Jonathan Rolfe
Message received. Raising daughters is really going to suck. A depressing and defensive view of raising daughters where fathers are the only thing standing between a toxic culture, predatory men, and a girl's proclivity for anorexia, STDs, depression, and suicide. The author seems overly obsessed with sex...she must really think about it a lot. I appreciate the Christian worldview and the recognition that girls need strong dads--and there is a lot of good advice--but, sheesh, I've been put throu ...more
Jun 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fathers of girls
This was a great read with very practical information for dads. I am impressed with the author's expertise. I read on the kindle and the bibliography starts at 86% if that tells you anything. She writes as a medical doctor who has seen many, many young girls in her practice that provides her with an insight that is quite deep and broad.

I would encourage any father to pick this book up and learn from it. It could change you and your daughter's life.

Highly Recommended.
Aug 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book for any father of daughters. This is not a know it all woman addressing men who need it. Rather, it's an enlightening, lucid, detailed, authoritative tribute to the power of fatherhood, and the call to it. Although I myself am not divorced, I especially appreciate the section for divorced men
Widyanto Gunadi
Jun 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have this book in hardcopy. It's a very thoughtful, practical, and inspiring read. The price maybe a little bit over the top, but it will give you a run for its money. Every man, young and old alike, should give it a go.
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Full name: Margaret J. Meeker.

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