What Dads Really Want on Father’s Day

Mother and father walking with bikes and son.

What Dads Really Want on Father’s Day

When I think of Father’s Day I normally think of breakfasts in bed, handmade cards from the kids, and ties that dad will probably wear once or twice.. or maybe not at all. It’s difficult to find the perfect gift or to think of the perfect activities that dad will love on his special day — the day that celebrates him as the anchor of your family. But what are some things that you can you do to make it great? What do dads really want? Well, I’ve asked several dads these questions and they’ve said that whether it’s their first Father’s Day or their tenth, these are some things that they would love.

1. The Gift of Praise and Thanks

All dads want to feel appreciated. They want to know that their hard work and love for their family is recognized and appreciated. Make it a point to really tell him just how much you love him and are grateful for everything that he does for your family on Father’s Day. You could do that by writing him a thank-you letter explaining all the ways you love how he contributes to your family, how much his support as a partner and father means to you, and all the reasons why you are grateful to have him as your companion through life and parenting. If writing is not your strength, consider making a short family video for him. I personally love the idea of a video because that is a momento that he will love watching for years to come. Don’t worry about your gift costing a lot of money, dads said that the greatest gift is the gift of gratitude and love on Father’s Day.

2. The Gift of Relaxation

Gratitude and praise might be the greatest gift, but almost every dad that I spoke with said that they want Father’s Day to be relaxing….and have some time away from the kids. We all know that once your little one joins the world, it an be difficult to have some “me” time. Yes, your partner probably gets a lot more “me” time than you do, but remember, it’s his day! Of course spend the morning showering dad with your gifts, hugs and kisses, but after showering him with gratitude, go take the kids on a walk or to get ice cream, or something and let dad veg a bit and relax.

3. The Gift of Sleep

As parents, we all know that sleep is hard to come by; especially if you are a new parent. Sleeping in on weekends is a thing of the past so on Father’s Day, give him the gift of sleep. Let him sleep in and lounge around in bed for as long as he wants. More than likely your man is working hard all week (as are you!) to provide for your family and he probably misses being able to sleep in on the weekends. If you let him sleep uninterrupted, that will be his favorite way to start the day.

4. The Gift of No Responsibilities

Along with the gift of relaxation, dads really don’t want to have any major responsibilities on Father’s Day. If he normally has chores like washing the dishes, taking out the trash, watching the kids, running errands, etc., give him a pass. Father’s Day is his day so let him feel pampered and take over his responsibilities or let them wait.

5. The Gift of Quality Time

I know that I said that dads want some “me” time away from the kids, but it is Father’s Day so of course they want to have some time to spend it together as a family. You could go on a walk, or a bike ride together, or plan a picnic. You could lie in a hammock, or build a fire and make s’mores and share stories, dreams and the love that you have for the man beside you. That’s a day he will never forget.

6. The Gift of a Good Meal

The saying, “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach” is definitely true. On Father’s Day, prepare his favorite meal with his favorite beverage. Whether that’s waffles and a pound of extra crispy bacon, a steak and beer, or his mother’s famous spaghetti sauce recipe, serve it with a smile because we know that it will warm his heart.

7. The Gift of Romance

Father’s Day is not just a day to celebrate dad as a provider and caregiver. It’s also a day to honor your partner as your lover and friend. Make him feel the love by telling him just how much he means to you, dressing up (or down) for him, or treating him to a massage. Give him a sexy surprise in the morning or  right before bed and steal a few moments during the day to remind him just how much you love him.

8. The Gift of Keepsakes

It may seem overdone, but have “the baby” or the kids make him something special. “The best gifts are the ones that my children make,” one father said. If your little one is a little too young to make something, you could always make him a calendar, cellphone case, coffee mug, serving platter, you name it with baby’s picture, handprints, etc. You may think he will never use it, but normally they display them with pride.

There you have it! Was there anything that you did on Father’s Day that your partner loved? Please share below so I can add it to my list. 🙂

About the Author /

Nina is The Baby Chick® & CEO of Baby Chick®. She is a baby planner, birth doula, postpartum doula, childbirth educator, newborn care specialist, and a mother. With over eight years of experience, she has supported hundreds of families during their pregnancies, births, and postpartum journeys.

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5️⃣ Paternity leave! If you have it TAKE IT. The early stages of a child's life are not just for moms to enjoy. I know as men making the money especially after having a baby it's hard, but trust me. You can always make money but there are no instant replays in life. It doesn't make you more of a man to not take the leave. It's equally as important that you as a Dad get to be a part of the early development of your child. ⁠
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1️⃣ Look for signs of readiness:⁠
- Diaper dry for at least 1-2 hours.⁠
- Pulling at their diaper when its wet or soiled.⁠
- Hiding or fidgeting when going pee or poo in diaper.⁠
- Interest in others using the potty.⁠
- Waking up with a dry diaper after naps.⁠
- Telling you when they have gone pee or poo.⁠
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Potty training is much quicker if your child is showing the above signs, but you can start before this.⁠
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2️⃣ What you will need to buy:⁠
- Toilet seat insert to place on your toilet⁠
- Steps⁠
- Underwear (at least 10 pairs)⁠
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3️⃣ Getting yourself and your child prepared:⁠
- Talk to your child about using the potty, maybe take them into the bathroom when you go and talk them through the process (e.g. wiping, flushing, and washing hands, etc.)⁠
- Practice pulling pants or shorts up and down.⁠
- Look on YouTube with your child at some potty training stories (e.g. 'I Want My Potty' and 'Pirate Pete's Potty')⁠
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- Sit your child on the potty at every diaper change, first thing in the morning and just before bed to get them used to sitting on the toilet.⁠
- Teach your child the correct vocabulary or signs needed to communicate when they need to go potty.⁠
- Make sure you have plenty of spare clothes.⁠
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4️⃣ Let's get toilet trained:⁠
- Get your child to choose a pair of underwear and put them on.⁠
- Talk to them about using the toilet and communicating when they need to pee or poo. You can sit them on the toilet at this point if you wish.⁠
- Take your child to the toilet every 15/20 minutes. Say "let's go to the potty" rather than asking "do you want to go to the toilet" - if you ask, they are likely to say no! Also, look for signs like moving from side-to-side or hiding. These are normal signs that they might need to go potty.⁠
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(Continue reading in the comments!)