woman and father, what to write in a father's day card
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What To Write In Your Dad's Father's Day Card, Whether You're Close Or Not

Sometimes you’re at a loss for words.

by Shannon Evans
Originally Published: 

Every family dynamic is different, and sometimes the state of our own family relationships changes from year to year, so celebrating holidays like Mother's or Father's Day doesn't look the same for everyone. With the latter coming quickly around the corner, many of us have begun making our plans and preparations for the big day to honor dear old dad — but when it comes to giving a card, how do you know what to write in a Father’s Day card to your dad?

There are all kinds of Father’s Day messages you can include in a card, ranging from sentimental and thoughtful to distant, depending on your relationship with your dad. Expressing some of what you feel to any relative can be complicated, and you might be wondering how to choose the right words for your particular relationship. So what are some things to write in a Father’s Day card?

Here, there's a curated a sentiment for nearly every kind of father-adult child relationship that you can put in a Father’s Day card, whether or not you’re pairing it with a gift. So whether you and your dad are BFFs, have been estranged, or fall somewhere in between, there’s an appropriate Father’s Day message something in this list for everyone. (And honestly, when all else fails, a simple "I love you" may be enough for the dad your life.)

You might choose to use the words verbatim, or take the general idea and put your own spin on it. Once you get started, you may get swept away penning elegant prose about your fondest childhood memories — or you might decide its best to keep it short and sweet, lest your list of grievances find their way to paper. You can take these words as a starting point, an ending point, or perhaps somewhere in the middle. Whatever you choose, what you write in your Father’s Day card will be just the right thing.

Father’s Day messages for dad, from funny to sentimental

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  • Today I'm remembering all of the laughs we've had, the jokes we've told, and the good times we've enjoyed together. Thanks for sticking with me through thick and thin. You've been more than a dad — you've been a friend, too. Happy Father's Day!
  • I am so lucky to have you in my life, Dad. When I've needed a shoulder to cry on, you've been there. When I've needed a listening ear, you've let me talk indefinitely. When I've needed advice, you've been ready with wisdom. Thank you for always being there for me, no matter what. Happy Father's Day!
  • Happy Father's Day to the man who is most likely my father. I hope it's full of laughs.
  • Our special bond has always meant the world to me. Thank you for going above and beyond to be the very best father a person could ask for. I treasure our memories together and the solid foundation you've given me in life. Happy Father's Day, Dad. I love you.
  • This year, more than ever, you’ve shown me what strength looks like. Thank you for always fighting to be there for your family. I love you so much. Happy Father’s Day.
  • I wish we could be nearer today, as I think about how lucky I am to have you as a dad. Despite the miles between us, I know I can always count on your support. Thanks for being there for me, no matter how far away. Happy Father's Day, Dad.
  • You taught me everything I know about sports, home improvement, and fixing cars. I promise I’ll always be here to be your personal tech support help line to return the favor.

Father’s Day message for father figures (uncles, older brothers, stepdads, father-in-law, etc.)

  • I can’t begin to tell you how grateful I am for everything you’ve done for me. You were always there for me when I was growing up, and I always felt safe knowing that you had my back. Thanks for being so great.
  • Thank you for stepping up to the plate to take care of me when I really needed you. You’re the person I’m celebrating most this Father’s Day.
  • I can’t express how thankful I am for you and all the times you stepped up as my role model when I had no one else. You have been such a wonderful presence in my life. Happy (basically my) Father’s Day.
  • You aren't my biological father, but you have meant the world to me as a dad because family is much more than DNA. Thank you for being a strong and loving presence in my life. Happy Father's Day to a great man.
  • I’m so thankful to have a father-in-law who treats me like one of his own children. I cherish our relationship and am so happy you are in my life. Happy Father’s Day.

Father’s Day messages for grandfathers

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  • Thank you for all you did for me growing up and setting such a high bar for me to reach for my new baby. I’m so thankful they get to have you as a grandpa. I love you. Happy Father’s Day!
  • I’m the luckiest because I get to call you grandpa. Happy Father’s Day, and I love you to the moon and back.
  • You’ve always spoiled me and now it’s my turn to spoil you! Happy Father’s Day and this year’s ice cream sundae is on me!
  • Whenever my parents needed help, you were always the first one to call. Thank you for always being so reliable, for showing me the importance of family, and taking me on all those fishing trips. I learned about all my favorite hobbies from you.

Father’s Day message for the dad you’re not close with but trying to rebuild a relationship with

  • I hope this year has been a great one for you, and I hope we can spend some time this year getting to know each other a little better.
  • I know things haven’t always been easy between us, and I know some of that has been my fault. I’m ready to start over and build a relationship with you, because I want you in my life.
  • We haven't always had the easiest relationship, but I want you to know that I want you in my life. No matter what's happened in the past, you still are and always will be my dad. No one can replace you in my life. Happy Father's Day.
  • I know we've had our ups and downs, but you are an important part of my life, Dad. I believe the best is yet to come for us, and I look forward to more good times spent together in the future. You are special to me. Happy Father's Day.

You’re certainly under no obligation to write a Father’s Day card if you have a toxic relationship with your father or a father figure in your life, but if you do have a good relationship, or you are working on repairing a relationship with your dad, grandfather, or other father-figure, these Father’s Day messages are thoughtful sentiments to include in a Father’s Day card.

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