Nurturing a Father-Daughter Relationship

Nurturing a Father-Daughter Relationship


When Ubeka first enrolled in Fortune’s Fatherhood Initiative program, he sought guidance and understanding. While struggling to navigate a tumultuous relationship with his child’s mother, he hoped that the program could offer him tools and resources to better handle the challenges he faced.   

Friends and family often gave him advice to act combative when facing conflicts with his daughter’s mother, suggesting that he fight for sole custody or engage in other aggressive tactics. Not wanting to jeopardize Ubeka’s relationship with his five-year-old daughter, he instead began listening to advice from the program.   

The Fatherhood Initiative program aims to help noncustodial fathers reconnect with their children, develop essential parenting skills and increase engagement and responsibility in their relationship. The program offers individual and family counseling, family and financial literacy, anger management, assistance with child support and father-to-father mentoring.

The counselors in the program have provided Ubeka and the other fathers with tools to help them successfully rebuild and strengthen their relationships with their children. Ubeka shared that, while he has a tremendous relationship with his daughter, conflicts with her mother have interfered. He knew he needed to manage those conflicts better and work to co-parent more effectively to maintain a relationship with his daughter.

“They taught me to hold myself accountable. I communicate with my daughter’s mother through text messages, and it’s helpful because I know everything is documented. I cut out aggressive speaking and my frustrations with whatever situation we have going on.”  

Ubeka has built strong relationships with other men in the Fatherhood Initiative program. Referring to what he called “a band of brothers,” Ubeka shared that the men in the program often learn from each other’s experiences.  

“The counselors give us great advice, and so far, I have put it into practice,” Ubeka shared. “To the other men in the class, it can be helpful to hear it from me because I’m sitting next to them, and they see from me that the tactics they teach us in class work. We can be an example for each other.”

Ubeka reconnected with his daughter after several months without contact. With help from the Fatherhood Initiative program, he feels much more confident as he continues to build their connection.

“Now that she’s back with me, we’ve gotten right back into our groove. I’m persistent in building our relationship and having a routine with her, and that’s exactly what we both need. It’s amazing, I feel so grateful that she is back with me now.”

As a father, Ubeka believes that his daughter makes him a better person. The choices he makes each day are always in the best interest of his daughter and how she can feel loved and cared for. He is grateful to have her back in his life and to make up for lost time.   

“When my daughter looks at me, that’s the only time I ever care about someone else’s opinion. It makes me a better person, and I make better decisions. The choices I make in my life are for her. I don’t have time for other things, because I’m busy being a parent and being there for her.”

Ubeka is excited to spend Father’s Day with his daughter this year. They’re taking a trip to the aquarium with other fathers at Fortune, but Ubeka shared that how they spend the day doesn’t matter to him. Time with his daughter, no matter how that time is spent, is the most important part of Father’s Day

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