When Casey and I were getting ready to go to the doctor’s office to learn Addie’s gender, I was openly hoping that our first child would be a girl. I don’t know why I wanted to have a daughter more than I wanted to have a son, but I did. When we went to the doctor’s office to find out what gender Vivi — our second — would be, I openly claimed to be neutral, but I secretly wanted another girl.
The reasons why I wanted Vivi to be a girl were entirely different than the reasons I wanted Addie to be a girl. By the time Casey was pregnant with Vivi, I had already become addicted to being the father of a daughter. There’s a special relationship between father and daughter. Fathers also have special relationships with sons, but I really liked the dynamics of the father-daughter relationship and I wanted to have that with Vivi too.
If Casey and I ever decide to have another child, I’m not sure whether I’ll openly root for one sex over the other, but it would be difficult to not hope for another daughter.
Turns out there may be psychological and health benefits to having daughters over sons. In a recent article, Anna North of BuzzFeed listed 7 reasons why “[d]aughters can make their parents healthier, happier, and nicer.” The 7 reasons are all supported by various studies that were done that evidence how having daughters is beneficial to parents.
I don’t care if having daughters does really help parents be healthier, happier, and nicer. What I noticed while reading the article was that having my own daughters has really helped me in all those ways.
Here are the 7 reasons listed in the article about how daughters can make parents healthier, happier, and nicer:
1. Daughters Make Men More Generous
My daughters absolutely make me more generous. As a kid I remember spending an awful lot of time with my male friends making fun of other people who didn’t fit what we considered normal. We would never physically hurt anyone, but we didn’t spend much time focusing on caring about others. Addie has taught me how I went wrong when I was her age. She is so full of love and kindness, and she constantly expresses her goal of learning to become more kind to those around her. It’s very impressive and it rubs off on everyone in our house.
2. Daughters Make Parents More Likely To Favor Gender Equality
Before I had daughters I never really thought about gender equality. It wasn’t something that affected me so it never came up. Now that I have two daughters I want them to have the same opportunities I have regardless of the fact that they are daughters. Even writing that sentence in the manner I did makes me cringe because it comes across as if my daughters should be regretful that they are daughters and they should not be.
3. They Are More Likely To Support Their Aging Parents
I don’t have any real experience with this one, but Casey’s mother has one sister and they’ve both been spending quite a bit of time lately taking care of Casey’s grandparents.
4. Daughters Can Grow Up Into Friends
Daughters are supposed to be able to grow up and become friends with their moms, but I think the friendship between sisters surpasses that of mom and daughter. I was raised with three sisters and Casey has a sister. They’re all really close, and not just because they’re family. They’re all friends with each other and I’m jealous about the relationships they have with each other.
5. Having Two Daughters Is The Recipe For Happiness
I wasn’t sure our family could get much happier when it was just the three of us. Then Vivi came along and showed us how much joy can come from watching our two daughters play together. It also means that we each get to spend time with at least one daughter at any given time and that only increases the happiness in the home.
6. Daughters Might Improve Mom’s Health
Apparently daughters share health advice with their mothers and that’s why moms can end up with improved health.
7. They Make Dads Live Longer
I don’t have much experience with this one either, but I hope having two daughters helps me live longer. I can understand why daughters can help me live longer. The increase in love and happiness has to have positive effects on the health of the heart.