orlandovacation_teen-daughter-father-tipsAs you plan your trip to Disney World you’re likely excited to see the smile light up your daughter’s face. However, it’s also true that teen daughters come with their own challenges. These 4 tips will help you get closer to your daughter generally, which can help make your trip to Disney World even more exciting and fulfilling for everyone!

1.         Listen to her when she speaks

As parents, it’s easy to get so busy that you’re constantly trying to multi-task. It may not seem like a huge deal to wash the dishes while she’s telling you about your day, but the truth is that when you’re distracted she’ll be able to sense it. What seems like a not-so-important story to you may seem incredibly important to you. This doesn’t mean that you have to drop what you’re doing every time she speaks to you, but it doesn’t hurt to simply say, “Honey, I’d love to hear all about this but I’m a little distracted cooking dinner right now. Can we make time to talk after clean up?”

2.         Spend real, quality time together

orlandovacation_father-teen-daughterThere’s simply no substitute for time together. This doesn’t mean just sitting on the couch next to each other watching a movie, though that can certainly be a fun activity! Take her out for coffee or a hot chocolate and sit down and actually get to know one another. You don’t want to fall into the trap of being her friend instead of her parent, but you do want to remember that she is more than just your daughter – she’s a real person, too! Get to know her.

3.         Accept her as she is – within reason

You want the best for her and this sometimes means letting her know that there are things in her life she needs to work on. However, don’t ever forget that no matter what she says, you are the most important man in her life. If you’re overly critical, she’ll take this to heart. Be supportive and uplifting, and accept her flaws for what they are.

4.         Expect bumps along the road

Your trip to Disney World is going to be amazing – but it’s also going to have bumps. There may be moments when she’s grumpy or sullen, or there may be moments when she doesn’t want to hang out with the family. Don’t get upset. Just keep moving forward and she’ll come around. Know that the attitude will pass, and while you do need to address inappropriate behavior, you don’t need to react to every sigh or eye roll. Your daughter is growing up and it’s a difficult process. Give her a break – and give her a magical trip to Disney World!