Sherie Phillips says her Father is her Best Friend

Name: Sherie Phillips City: Atlanta, GA | @Iamsheriep

Dads name: Sylvester Phillips | @Sylvesterphllps

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Describe your relationship with your Father and how did that impact you?

My relationship with my father is… well he’s my best friend. Our relationship has given me a tough outer shell. No time for tears, we have to keep going! When I would fall, he didn’t cuddle me and kiss my scar. He clap and say good job! Pick me up and say okay now go try again! The benefits of this is I’m not afraid to fall because I know I can get it if I just keep trying. And he will be there to cheer me on! The con of this teaching is sometimes I don’t know when nor how to cope. During traumas, I’m sometimes on autopilot and I just keep going! I definitely held on to the “no time for tears” theory.

What’s the best thing you’ve learned from your Father?

Sometimes you’re just better! It’s not that you think you’re all that or an arrogance. It’s a reality. A Bently is just better than a Buick. Don’t feel bad and never play small. You’re better. Always be better!

What struggles did you face in your relationship with your Dad and how did you get through them?

My dad wasn’t always there physically. He worked A LOT! So he couldn’t always make it to my performances or ceremonies. Sometimes my mama would have to force him away from work to be there because she knew what it meant for me when I’d see him in the crowd. But one day my daddy sat me down, I was probably 16 or 17, and he explained to me his job in being an entrepreneur. He explained the importance of his dream, the role it was playing for us currently, and the intended role for the future of our family. He tried to get me to understand generational wealth but I was young and spoiled so I didn’t grasp the theory. I respected it though because he said one day he won’t be able but he wanted me to always be taken care of without having to be dependent on a mate. But when the market crashed and he went out of business while I was in grad school I understood. Now I find myself working just as much as he did.

What has your relationship with your Father taught you about what to look/not look for in your partner?

A lot! My daddy is gentleman but a ladies man! He’s taught me key things about dating like don’t be afraid to date more than one person; that’s dating! Be selective when being exclusive. Not every man you date needs to know where you live. If you’re exclusive with him and still have to call me, reconsider the relationship. Always be iron to my mate’s iron. Be an asset and never a liability. Be weary of how a man treats his family and what he prioritizes. Never let finances be the reason you have to make it work. Much like a job that you love doesn’t feel like work, it’s the same with your mate. There will be challenges and it won’t always be easy but the reward is worth the headache if you really love them. But know when to fold em! And only you know what that looks like!

How has your relationship with your Father shaped the woman you are today?

My daddy made me believe I could do anything in the world! My brain is too big to be in a box as he says. He’s the reason I wasn’t scared to move to Atlanta and start a new chapter. He’s the reason I wasn’t afraid to quit my government job after 6 years and become a full time entrepreneur. He shaped me into a risky, resilient, responsible woman.

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If you could write a quick letter to your father, starting with “Dear Father,” what would you say?

Dear Father,

Thank you. For believing in me. For supporting me. For pushing me. I don’t know how I would have turned out with more of you or less of you. But I thank God I’ll never have to figure out. I may not be your little girl anymore but I’ll always be your princess. I love you, Daddy!

Love Forever,
Your favorite girl

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Dear Fathers
Dear Fathers is The Premiere Media Platform dedicated to telling stories of black fathers from all angles.

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