Thank you for always being such a great dad. Not everyone has a father growing up, and for many different reasons that is the case. For those of us who are lucky to have our dads/father figures present in our lives, thank you. You don't always get enough credit for what you do. We all have different relationships with our dads, but that doesn't change the fact that they are still a blessing in our lives.
Thank you for setting my standards high.
You were an example of the person I want to be with someday. You showed me how to treat a girl and how to respect myself. I have looked up to you my entire life, and I don't know what my life would be like without you. I see the impact you have on others and I will never be able to show you how proud that makes me to call you my dad.
Thank you for teaching me I am worth something.
With the media forcing on us what we should and shouldn't do, I am glad I had you around to tell me that you are proud of me. You found my strengths and highlighted them so I could see them more clearly, and you pulled out my weaknesses so I could learn to better deal with them. You made sure I always knew I would be successful, even if I felt like I was failing at the time.
Thank you for being a great role model.
Because of you I had someone to look up to. You gave me enough freedom to make mistakes of my own, but still had you there to guide me on how to better learn from them. You weren't perfect, but I didn't expect you to be. You are my dad, and I will always be grateful to have had a role model like you growing up.
Thank you for understanding me when I felt like no one else did.
During the times when I felt as if I were alone, or I thought I was the only one who thought the way I did, you were the one who said the words "I understand" and meant them. You showed me how to be comfortable in my own skin and that the way I think is normal. When you are feeling misunderstood, the best thing you can have is someone on your side, and someone who understands. Sometimes that person knows you better than you know yourself.
Thank you for not always being the "good guy."
As a father one of the toughest things is having to be the bad guy. You can't always be the best friend. In order to teach a lesson it can be necessary to give tough love. Although a younger me may not have understood at one point why you said no, or why you were being "mean" when you didn't give me what I wanted, an older me now appreciates the lessons you taught me. Loving someone can come in many forms, and you always showed me you loved me in many ways. Being a good parent can be one of the best ways to tell your daughter you love her.
Thank you for making family a priority.
With the way some American homes are these days, family has become something that has been pushed aside or changed altogether. Having a father there who puts his family first is important and something that shouldn't be taken for granted. So, thank you.
You have been not only a father, a parent, a mentor, but also a best friend. Thank you for everything you do for me and our family, I know it isn't always easy, but we appreciate you and the effort you put forth in order to keep our family in sync.