I have three older sisters. They’re absolutely wonderful, but a house full of women can be a minefield for a boy. When I was a freshman in high school, I was very skinny. I couldn’t gain weight no matter what I did. One day, I walked into the kitchen and one of my sisters said, “Whose Weight Watchers cookies are these?” I innocently replied, “They’re not mine. It’s not like I need to lose weight.” I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why my sister got so mad. I wasn’t talking about her or anyone else for that matter. I was talking about myself, but she immediately assumed I was insulting her.
As a boy, I said blatantly rude things all the time and I wish I could say I’ve grown out of it as a man. Unfortunately, that’s not true. It becomes particularly dangerous when we say things without thinking around our daughters. Young girls process information about themselves like supercomputers. They hear everything, see everything, and feel everything. This is especially true when someone says or implies something about their bodies. And if a brother’s offhanded comment has an impact, a dad’s comment can be crushing—and can lead to body image issues. So we need to be careful. Here are 5 hurtful things dads say about their daughters’ bodies.