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Kia Stephens


January 30, 2017

Dating & the Daddyless Daughters Part III : How the Daddyless Daughter Views Sex

January 30, 2017 | By | No Comments

It is difficult to talk about the subject of absent dads and daughters without talking about sex.   We are familiar with the data that states women without fathers are more susceptible to getting their needs met from sexual relationships with men.  Coming up on the next episode of digging deeper we are going to take a closer look and the impact absent dads have on the sexual relationships of their daughters.

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Kia Stephens


January 22, 2017

How To Heal From Trauma

January 22, 2017 | By | No Comments

Whether you are in the midst of trying to resolve a conflict, forgive a loved one, cope with an unexpected life change, or just heal trauma can impact you without a moments notice.  For this reason I am excited to share my most recent live stream with you. Read More

Kia Stephens


January 1, 2017

1 New Year’s Resolution I Kept & Why I Kept It

January 1, 2017 | By | 22 Comments

I’m a great starter, but not that hot a finisher. I begin exercising and then stop, create schedules I don’t follow, and binge on junk after declaring vegan status. I’m what you would call a big idea person.

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Kia Stephens


December 20, 2016

When Life Is Unresolved

December 20, 2016 | By | 8 Comments

I just love closure. Don’t you?

The End of an Argument

A Paid Off Bill

A Happy Ending

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Kia Stephens


October 18, 2016

Dating & Daddyless Daughters Live Stream Hangout

October 18, 2016 | By | No Comments

In this intimate live stream hangout with Tiffany Wilson of we talked about how fathers impact the decisions we make in our dating relationships.

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Kia Stephens


September 18, 2016

What Cosmo Won’t Tell You About Great Sex

September 18, 2016 | By | 12 Comments

As a culture we are fascinated by sex.  And somewhere sitting on the top floor of a New York City skyscraper is a marketing executive that knows this about you and I.  Which explains why every time we buy groceries our eyes are bombarded by the latest and unapologetically audacious title on the cover of Cosmo.

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Kia Stephens


June 15, 2016

When Father’s Day Is Bitter Sweet

June 15, 2016 | By | 4 Comments

You celebrate a few men:

Your neighbor,

That random dad in Target with the kids,

Your friend’s husband,

and other relatives,

but when it comes to your own father things gets complicated.

While idyllic images of fathers and daughters flood social media channels, you struggle to find images to post.  Father’s day is just a reminder that things aren’t so ideal for you. And this holiday comes with a broad array of emotions:






and Bitterness.

Thus, fueling the temptation to wear a mask for the day, so your true feelings remain undetected. You’d rather suppress your raw emotions then broadcast your pain at a time when no one else is. I have felt like this on a number of occasions, and as a professional stuffer, I can say with clarity, “Don’t do it.”

This method of dealing with pain is ineffective.  Passive aggression is like a fast moving bullet to the soul, leaving it’s victims with a non healing wound.  If this sounds familiar, and your Father’s Day experience is more bitter than sweet, I have three suggestions to help you process your feelings.

#1 Give Yourself Permission to Grieve What Has Been Lost  

The physical or emotional absence of a father is a traumatic experience in the life of his daughter.  Whether the cause be death, divorce, abandonment, distance, or substance abuse, the effect is a loss that must be grieved.  Though difficult to process, it is necessary, in order to heal.

Are you hurting today?

Is your father daughter story so painful you can barely talk about it?

If so, the Bible gives you license to mourn.  

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

Matthew 5:4 (NIV)

Grieve every difficult memory, wound inflicted, word said, moment missed, and rejection felt.  Your story should not be minimized or dismissed.  If it is painful to you then it matters to God.  One of my favorite scriptures says it like this, Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.”  1 Peter 5:7 (KJV)

When Father's Day Is Bitter Sweet Meme 1

And you might be saying, “I’ve tried to release it, but the wound is too deep.”  I completely understand. The process of grieving takes time and is unique to every person.  Enlist support on your journey; you may require the help of a professional counselor, or a trusted friend.  Whatever it takes, for however long it takes, you will “be comforted” in your grief by God.  So do not lose heart.

# 2 Choose Forgiveness

The love you feel for your daddy only makes the dagger of his words and actions sink deeper. And attempting to forgive him is like falling down a bottomless pit: never coming to the end of his offenses against you.  I get it.  You are tired of trying to forgive a man that doesn’t seem to deserve forgiveness.  

And if it had not been for the selfless act of a Jewish carpenter, I might encourage you to forget about forgiving your daddy.  But because of Christ, my forgiveness is not conditional and yours either. We forgive because we have been forgiven, period.

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.  Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”  Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV

And this is more easily said than done, but it is doable. Christ is the impetus for, and the enabler of forgiveness.  Without Him it is impossible to willingly and consistently relinquish my right to hold a grudge towards my offender.

Every time I forgive with my mouth I ask God to help my emotions to follow suit.  And if the pain resurfaces, or a new offense is made, I continue to lean on the power of my heavenly father to forgive again. 

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Kia Stephens


November 10, 2015

How a Woman’s Clothing Impacts a Man Part II

November 10, 2015 | By | 10 Comments

Every man in the room watched her walk past.  She had legs that reached the ceiling, weave that touched the floor, heels about 3 ½  inches high, and a mini dress that hugged her frame like saran wrap.  Something in me cringed because two of the men with their eyes fixated on this women were married.

This is shocking but oh so common, maybe even accepted as manly behavior.  “A man is going to be a man,” some say.  I have even noticed the wandering eye of men out with their wives, who take a second sometimes third and fourth look at another woman.  

Maybe you have seen it too, or been on the receiving end as the woman looked at or the one ignored. In their book Every Man’s Battle, authors Stephen Arterburn, Fred Stoeker, and Mike Yorkey call it “visual foreplay”. In their chapter on “Just By Being Male” they had the following to say about visual stimulation.

Our eyes give men the means to sin broadly and at will.  We don’t need a date or a mistress.  We don’t ever need to wait.  We have our eyes and can draw sexual gratification through them at any time.  We’re turned on by female nudity in any way, shape, or form.

They go on to say, “. . . For males, impurity of the eyes is sexual foreplay. . .  Just like stroking an inner thigh or rubbing a breast.  Because foreplay is any sexual action that naturally takes us down the road to intercourse.

Maybe this is why Jesus himself said, “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. Matthew 5: 28 (NIV)

Yet, even with this widely known understanding about men, why is it that sexually provocative clothing is more and more readily accepted and prevalent?  I would argue that there is a symbiotic relationship between the man who looks, and the woman who desires to get attention for her appearance.

She is getting a need met too.  The woman receives affirmation and the man receives visual stimulation.  This is otherwise known as lust.  But lust is never satisfied; it always demands more, leaving the partaker empty.  

As a result the clothes get tighter.  The skirts get shorter.  And more skin is revealed until there is another exchange.


A glance

A smile

A catcall

A number

Existing in her heart is a gnawing fear that if she is no longer considered attractive, she will decrease in value.  So she works diligently to maintain her sexy image because every woman is a competitor and every man a conquest.  This occurs all while the gaping wound in her soul widens.

Instead of dealing with the root cause of her actions she masks them by focusing on how she looks.  Appearing seductive on the outside but broken on the inside, she finds herself stuck in a vicious cycle.  Many times her wounds have been created by the physical and emotional absence of her father.  

So what is the solution?  How can a woman who has grown dependent on external validation from men ever change?  The answer is she must make a conscious choice: every second, minute, and hour of the day to be affirmed by God.

One of my absolute favorite stories in the Bible is that of Jesus and the woman at the well.    The Bible does not speak of this woman’s wounded state, but it does mention her history.  She had been married five times and with a man who was not her husband at the time she met Jesus.

I imagine after five marriages with five different men one would have accumulated some wounds.  In fact, she was probably already wounded prior to her first marriage.  Searching for something in the arms of each subsequent man, she was not satisfied and Jesus knew it.

Instead of speaking to her natural thirst He spoke to the thirst in her soul.If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”   John 4: 10 (NIV)

It is this same thirst for validation He seeks to quench in the heart of every woman.  


How a Woman's Clothing Impacts a Man Part II Meme 1

Through His word God offers us an endless supply of deep soul satisfying affirmation.  It is not based on anything we wear or don’t wear.  God’s affirmation is given freely because of who we are in Him.  

How a Woman's Clothing Impacts a Man Part 2 Meme 3


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Celita Williams


October 12, 2015

How Fathers Impact Gender Identity

October 12, 2015 | By | 2 Comments

This is for the female
That seemed to have a little more male than fe
When it came to the word she
She had a just a little less of the “s”
And a little more of the “h” and the “e”
This is for the woman that was a little more sour than sweet
This is for the woman I used to know
The woman I used to be
This is for the woman in me

When I was a child I quickly learned what I liked and did not like.  I knew very early on that I liked to play outside, ride my bike, play basketball, and explore the world (or neighborhood) around me on my own terms.  I also knew that I did not like wearing dresses, playing dress up, playing with dolls or confining myself to someone else’s idea of fun or appropriate “girly” mannerisms.

What I was discovering was so much more than just being a tomboy.  So much more than just being the sporty girl in a crowd full of pink bows and frills.  As I aged, the “girly” gap between me and the other females around me only grew larger.  Their seemingly innate feminine maturity increasingly outweighed my own and I realized that this is not something I could just grow out of…this is something I would have to work through for the rest of my life.

My struggle was for an appropriate identity at the root of my core self.  My identity as female did not feel comfortable or appropriate well into adulthood.  This is not the classic story of a little tomboy that grew out of her “boyish” ways, but the, nowadays, all too familiar story of what seemed like a little boy trapped in a girls’ body.  The main point of this post is not to make any sort of political stance one way or another about gender identity and what any one person should do when wrestling those feelings, but the point of this post is to highlight just how influential the words of others can be when navigating a personal crisis – especially the words of a father.

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I experienced all the taunts that one would expect “She talks like a boy, she walks like a boy, shoot she even claps like a boy!” OR “When are you going to grow out of this phase (speaking to an 18-year-old me)?”  But the most painful and confusing taunt of all was not from friends or church members or family, but from my father.

With a big smile on his face, a little chuckle under his words, and while addressing both my sister and I, my father once said, “God gave me just what I wanted…a daughter and a son!”

On the inside I sank.

On the inside I felt a sharp pain shoot through my stomach.

It was as if the wind had been knocked out of me.

Even if the church member said I acted “like” a boy, or the stranger often mistook me for a boy (with my short hair and baggy clothes), and even, EVEN if I preferred to carry myself in a manner consistent with “boy-dom” because that is how I felt comfortable for the moment.  ALL of that could have been overcome and redeemed with a fundamentally communicated understanding and unwavering stance from my father that I was always his little girl.

My countenance
I wished never gave away anything
Except don’t play with me
That I had played everyone else successfully
But in the process I played myself
Because I carried myself like a dude
A homey
But inwardly, secretly
I wished that somebody
Would treat me like a lady

His words are forever ingrained in my psyche.  It is his words that had the power to propel me into the femininity that I had shoved aside.  Now don’t get me wrong, my father and I have an amazing relationship today and he has expressed repeatedly that he is pleased with the woman that I have become, but this does not change the fact that the words of a father play a powerful role in a daughter’s image of herself and her level of core confidence.

As I entered adulthood and my battles with my identity only became more confusing I had to learn to put aside the words of my earthly father in exchange for the words of my heavenly Father.  Zephaniah 3:17 “For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.”

My heavenly Father delights in me, He calms me, He sings over me with joyful songs…He accepts me. How Fathers Impact Gender Identity Meme 3

It was in this understanding of His acceptance, and the level of acceptance I eventually saw demonstrated in His followers, that gave me the confidence to begin exploring what femininity looked like for me.  No, it did not look like my female friends growing up, and it did not look like my girlfriends’ in college, but there was a version of womanhood that I could embrace once I had a safe space wherein I could search.  Today I am not without my inner battles or occasional thoughts that my version of “female” is just not “female” enough, but even still the woMAN in me could become the WOman in me once I found the healing, accepting, and comforting words of a Father.

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I Opened up the scars and hurt spots for someone I trusted to see
Someone who loved me
That first someone being God
So I could be touched and felt and experience proper healing
That last someone being people
Those true friends
That weren’t turned away when being exposed to the ugly
And therefore they became part of the discovery
As I found the woman beneath the layers
The beauty queen

And I’m not only talking about the shape of my body solely
Or the clothing
But the character built and the confidence established
That allowed me to allow others to know me
This is for the woman
If any
Who are feelin’ me

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Kia Stephens


August 31, 2015

Pursuing Your Daddy When He Doesn’t Pursue You Back

August 31, 2015 | By | 16 Comments

Recently, a young reader asked me about contacting her father.  She questioned whether it would be a good idea since she had never met him.  Tucked within the subtext of her inquiry was the fear that reaching out to her dad could be more painful than not reaching at all.  

I understood the apprehension in her email.  Every woman with an absentee dad knows any attempt to connect with her father might result in rejection.  No one wants to be ignored or dismissed, especially by her daddy.   

As women, we live with an innate longing to be cherished by our fathers.  We are wired to flourish in his praise.  Even if the relationship is muddied with abandonment and painful memories, the desire to know and connect with our dad persists.

So we weigh the pros with the cons and evaluate whether to pursue a dad who isn’t   pursuing us. Despite the potential to be brushed-off, I recommended she connect with her dad, but only after processing her pain first. Eighteen years ago I needed this same advice.  

I was in college when a friend shared how she wrote a letter to her father.  She penned all the major events he missed and invited him back into her life. “This is doable,” I thought.   

So one day I sat at the computer and typed a two page letter giving the chronological rundown on everything from Elementary to High School.  When I came home on holiday breaks I stole pictures from my mom’s photo albums and gave them to my father.  I called him and initiated outings.  I invited him over to the house.  I visited, sent cards, prayed and believed.  I did everything I could do.

The expectation was that my efforts would produce a made-for-TV father daughter relationship.  With a little effort I could snap my fingers and poof, instant bonding; it didn’t work like that.  We did begin a relationship but it was like meeting with a stranger over and over again.

I underestimated the barriers between my dad and I: time, culture, pain, fear, beliefs, mistrust, distance, expectations, and lifestyle choices, to name a few.  Like swimming against the current, forging a relationship with my dad was difficult.   I never anticipated that it would be.

I thought hard work would manifest the ideal father daughter relationship I longed for; it did not.  What I failed to realize was my perspective needed to change.  The impetus for pursuing my father had been centered around me.

My Needs

My Wants

My Expectations

My Ideals

My Hurt

Although the initial pursuit of my daddy seemed noble, I was motivated by selfish gain.  And some might argue that I was justified in my all-about-me-state.  After all, didn’t I  deserve to be fathered, loved, and cherished?  

The truth I had to embrace was, initiating a relationship with my daddy in hopes of receiving his love and affirmation was a risky and sometimes futile attempt.  

 When we obligate another person to fill our emotional bucket we set ourselves up for disappointment.  

Pursuing a relationship with our fathers requires a commitment to love him whether he reciprocates our efforts or not.  This is a mindshift, but I believe it is one we must have when initiating a relationship with our fathers.  If you are considering this journey I have extracted 4 take aways from my own personal pursuit that may be helpful to you.

Start with God

Without Jesus Christ I would be tempted to slip back into a you-owe-me-mentality.  When viewing my father daughter relationship through the lens of the cross I realize my father owes me nothing.  The selfless sacrifice of Christ paid the debt for me and my dad.  

  Only He can empower us to love unconditionally. This is difficult but achievable.  

  Love looks, sounds and feels like God.

7 Reasons Why a Sex Act Won't Soothe A Love Ache

7 Reasons Why a Sex Act Won’t Soothe A Love Ache

Forgive Your Father

If you are fantasizing about the day you can unload all of your painful baggage on your father’s doorstep you are probably harboring unforgiveness.  That bitter root in you is like grease in a fire. It will spread covering everything in its path; your relationships, your vision, and your future. You must rid yourself of unforgiveness before pursuing your daddy.  Unforgiveness lays a faulty foundation for any relationship.

Expect the Best, Prepare for the Worst

When a daughter walks into her father’s life for the first time she doesn’t know what to expect.  For this reason I would recommend mentally walking yourself through several different scenarios.

What if my dad has another family?

What if he was there for his other children?

What if he is dead?

What if he is incarcerated?

What if he is on drugs?

What if he has a questionable past?

What if he isn’t’ interested in getting to know me?

What if he is embarrassed?

What if he doesn’t accept me?

These questions are tough to read and none of them may be true in your situation.  However, I believe it is better to consider all possible outcomes.

Develop a Support System

Don’t do this alone.  Ask your closest friends to pray for you (and me too).  You may need a shoulder to cry on, or a hand to hold.  Be vulnerable and allow your trusted friends to provide support for you.

I want to leave you with an encouragement if you feel like pursuing your daddy means no one is pursuing you.  The truth is God has pursued you since your birth.  He is wooing you through the people you meet, the blessings in life, the words of this blog post and in more ways than we know or or can imagine.  He loves you infinitely and He is more than capable of loving you as you endeavor to love your dad.

Pursuing Your Daddy When He Doesn't Pursue You Back Meme 9


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