Dads get a lot of calls from their adult kids. And to no one’s surprise, most of those calls have something to do with weird noises, leaking pipes, and that oh-so-common Home Depot overwhelm.
Dad to the rescue.
You might be thinking, but what else is there to talk about?
You’d be surprised at the number of things you can discuss with your father that doesn’t give him a task to do, something to research, or advice to give. We’re here to take the guesswork out of your conversations to cultivate a meaningful connection with him.
Use these conversation prompts to give you more reasons to call your dad, even when you don’t have a household emergency:
Ask Dad Questions About the Past
Sure, you might know the basics of your father’s upbringing. But have you dug into deeper questions regarding his childhood? Chances are, there’s a lot still left to discuss.
- What do you remember most about your childhood home(s), schools(s), park(s), etc.?
- Did you look forward to specific days, events, or holidays? What made those days uniquely special?
- Growing up, what was the hardest thing you went through?
- As a kid, what was your dream job?
- What did a typical Friday night look like for you at age 17? 25? My age?
- Tell me about your friends growing up.
Ask Dad About Family
Go beyond the basics. You’ll be surprised at where the conversation can go and the insights you can gain!
- Did your parents ever lose their jobs?
- How did your parents change after they retired?
- How are you different from your parents? How are you the same?
- What made you clash with your parents growing up? Did you argue often?
- When you were a teenager, who did you go to for advice? Looking back, was it solid advice?
- How are grandma/grandpa different as grandparents vs. parents?
Ask about Personal Growth and Development
You ask your dad for a lot of help, but do you know what has shaped him into the person he is today?
- Who was/is your mentor?
- Who was your role model? Who is yours now?
- When do you feel the happiest?
- What has been your favorite age so far?
- What’s your life motto?
- What are some of the best decisions you’ve ever made? What are some of the worst?
- What are you most proud of in life (aside from your kids!)?
- What keeps you awake at night?
- Whose career inspires you and why?
- If you weren’t doing _________, what would you do?
- What used to worry you that doesn’t now? What still worries you?
Seek His Advice
(But not because you have a problem or home improvement emergency!)
- What’s the ONE quality or skill a person should possess?
- What’s your best romantic advice?
- What made you successful at work?
- If you could give one piece of advice for my career, what would it be?
- How have you stayed close with your best friend throughout life?
- How do you cope with disappointment?
- How do you handle rejection?
- What’s a necessary lesson you learned as a result of failure?
- How have you pushed through your worst times?
- How do you keep setbacks and challenges in perspective?
- How do you get out of a funk?
Dream about the Future
Get to know dad’s personal goals.
- What are you most looking forward to in the next year? Five? Ten?
- Tell me about your dream retirement.
- If you could do or accomplish one thing before you die, what would it be?
- If you had ONE hope for your future, what would it be? If you had ONE hope for mine?
- Tell me about the legacy you hope to leave behind.
Inquire about Parenting and Your Relationship
Make sure to have a box of tissues nearby.
- As a parent, what do you know now that you wish you knew then?
- What about me most surprises you?
- What’s the biggest positive change you’ve seen in me over the years?
- In what ways am I most like you? In what ways are we different?
- Is there anything that you wish you had asked your parents but haven’t/did not?
- As a parent, what did you want to replicate from your childhood? What did you want to avoid from your childhood?
- What has been your biggest learning as a father?
- Which age was most challenging to parent? Which age was your favorite?
- What was it like to watch your partner become a parent?
- What would you say to first-time dads?
- What’s one thing we should do together that we haven’t?
- What’s one thing we should do again together?
- When did I make you most proud?
- What do you hope to pass down to me?
- What’s your favorite memory of us? As a family? 1:1?