Wonderful DadsA beautiful Father’s Day tribute in The Huffington Post Voices blog to the author’s adoptive father, honoring his choice to love her and parent her even when she was, by her own admission, very hard to love. Julie Maida shares stories of the incredible bond between her and her dad. She details the many ways in which his steady and loving influence was the “saving grace” during her difficult adolescence and then to her struggling, alcoholic young adult self. She credits his examples of integrity, accountability and trust to her journey to sobriety. Maida shares poignantly how he remained her rock in later years while struggling through her own parenting journey with her daughter. In honoring her dad, Maida further extends the tribute to dads all over who have gone the distance where they didn’t have to.

I support all fathers every day. However, this week I’d like to take a moment to shoot out some extra love and support to all the men who choose to step forward and fill the space where another has chosen to step back.

To all the stepfathers, adoptive fathers, foster dads and all other male guardians and father figures of women:

You will never understand how much she loves you and appreciates your presence in her life. You will never know how much your love saved her.