Father's Day: What's the best advice your dad gave you?

What's the best advice your father ever gave you? In honour of Father's Day Sunday, we asked readers on Facebook to share their dad's best advice.

'If you are going to be a bear, be a grizzly'

'Words cut deeper than a knife,' warned GeorgaDawn Moase's dad George Curtis, here with his wife and 6 children in about 1979. GeorgaDawn is the toddler in her sister's arms. (Submitted by GeorgaDawn Moase)

What's the best advice your father ever gave you? 

In honour of Father's Day Sunday, I asked readers on Facebook to share their dad's best advice. 

Here's some of what you said, and some delightful throwback snapshots too. 

'Words cut deeper than a knife'

"Be nice. Don't be yourself," Heather Morrison's 79-year-old dad tells her. "Basically he reminds me to be humble and not to take myself so seriously. He is a great dad."

Growing up in Mount Tryon, P.E.I., GeorgaDawn Moase was the youngest of half a dozen children, and her dad, 80, is still going strong. 

If you are going to be an ass, people will ride you.- Keith Taylor

"Be careful what you say to others in the heat of the moment, because words cut deeper than a knife and you can never really take them back," is the advice that has stuck with her, Moase said.  

When she was a rebellious teen he told her, "You may not think so right now, but your mom will be your best friend one day!" — which turned out to be true.

'Gender be damned'

Tania Stevenson Pendergast's father told her she could do anything that she put her mind to, "gender be damned," shared the Cornwall artist, now retired from a military career. 

"Also, when following in his footsteps and joining the military he advised me not to go Navy. I never got to ask him why. He passed away in my first year at RMC," she said. 

Tania Pendergast, age 1, and her dad Roger Stevenson, who always told her she could do anything she put her mind to. She joined the military. (Submitted by Tania Stevenson Pendergast )

Storyteller and former P.E.I. cabinet minister Alan Buchanan shares the best advice he gave his own four children: "'Don't smoke cigarettes, and don't get on the back of that motorcycle with Coady MacPherson.' Some of them listened," he shared. 

Susan C T Mac writes: "My dad always told me, 'You can always say yes after you said no, but you cannot say no after you said yes.'"

'If you look closely he took advantage of standing on the hearth for the photo. He doesn't miss a trick!' writes John Barrett (right) of P.E.I. with his dad, Arthur. (Submitted by John Barrett)

John Barrett's dad Arthur, 93, "has always led by example. I've always tried to keep up with his ability to over-deliver and cover off every detail of a project or event," he said.  

'Make yourself useful, Toots'

Valerie Acorn of Cornwall, P.E.I., writes that her dad was her confidante.

"Learn by asking questions if you are not sure, there is no such thing as a 'stupid' question," he told her. "Secondly, 'If you don't have the money to buy something, then you don't need it!' Words to live by!" Acorn said. 

'Never get between a dog and a fire hydrant; you will get wet because that dog is doing what feels right and natural to him,' was some of the wisdom Suzanne O'Callaghan recalls from her father, Maurice Timothy O'Callaghan. She's 2 or 3 in this snap with him. (Submitted by Suzanne O'Callaghan)

"Make yourself useful, Toots," was the pithy advice of Reg Bellefleur, father of Nicole Bellefleur of Charlottetown. 

Rosemary Compton's father taught her to "never sign anything without reading it, how to balance a cheque book, and always save for a rainy day," she said. 

"It's not what you save it's what you don't spend," was the advice artist Suzanne O'Callaghan remembers from her father. 

Silly bits

"My father was 18 and 20 when we were born so 36 when we graduated high school," recalled Loanne MacKay of Charlottetown. 

"He taught me to do donuts in the K-Mart parking lot during a snowstorm before I had my driver's. Favourite advice: 'Don't plant your corn too early.'"

'If you are going to be an ass, people will ride you,' was some memorable advice Jennifer Taylor, seen here (left) in 1983, remembers hearing from her father Keith Taylor. (Submitted by Jennifer Taylor )

Jennifer Taylor's father, Keith Taylor, told her: "'If you are going to be a bear, be a grizzly. And, if you are going to be an ass, people will ride you.' He was from the Miramichi, you see!"

"My dad taught me many things, one memorable item was to learn how to change a tire at age 8 so I could be self-reliant," said Ellen MacPhail of Charlottetown.

'Be a good friend'

"Always give people the benefit of the doubt, you never know what they might be going through," is the fatherly advice that's stuck with Karolyn Godfrey of Charlottetown.

Sara Annastashia Deveau writes that her father Kenny Charlie Archie MacKinnon always told her, "To have good friends, you have to be a good friend Sara."

'Be kind to everyone from every walk of life,' Frank Hendricken (right), told his daughter Corrine. (Submitted by Corrine Hendricken-Eldershaw)

"My dad was a passionate farmer and he shared this advice but more importantly he showed us," said Corrine Hendricken-Eldershaw, who grew up in Fanningbrook, P.E.I. 

"Take care of your family and friends! Work hard! Be kind to everyone from every walk of life, have a sense of humour," was her dad Frank Hendricken's advice.  

"My dad was ahead of his time," writes Michelle Blanchard of Charlottetown. "He taught me to respect everyone, because that's what he did. It didn't matter what colour your skin was, where you were from, your religion or who you loved. It didn't matter if you were the guy mopping the floor or royalty, dad treated everyone with respect. I am so grateful for this lesson."

About the Author

Sara Fraser

Web Journalist

Sara is a P.E.I. native who graduated from the University of King's College in Halifax. N.S., with a Bachelor of Journalism (Honours) degree. She's worked with CBC Radio and Television since 1988, moving to the CBC P.E.I. web team in 2015, focusing on weekend features. email sara.fraser@cbc.ca