Category Archives: Fathers
This song is so touching and although Luther Vandross originally sang the song, I love the Celine Dion version. I thought in honor of Father's Day, I would share this video with daughters who had a dad that made them feel important and loved.
Although my dad is still alive, he has Alzheimer's and doesn't remember me. I like to remember him as he was not as he is now. This is why it's important to cherish the moments with your loved ones and not take time for granted.
I wish my father shared more about his life and I wish I asked him more questions. I wsh there was more I can tell my sons about him. I wish he had a legacy to pass on. If there's one advice I would give to dads, it's to open up to your kids. Talk to them and listen to them. Don't be a mystery to them. Dance and laugh with them. Give them memories that they can share with their own children.
I have a funny pin on Pinterest that pretty much sums up my responsibility as a mom of boys. I think sometimes we get so caught up in raising our sons, that we forget that these boys and young men will one day be husbands and fathers.
We forget that each moment we share with our sons are teachable moments. We forget that we’re not just raising children, we’re leaving a legacy. I want my sons to learn from my accomplishments as well as my failures and challenges. I want them to understand that parenting is not a chore but a responsibility.
I want my sons to know that although gifts and words are nice, nothing spells love like spending quality time with your children. Don’t try to buy your children’s love by lavishing them with gifts. Your children are not a burden. The time you spend making money for your family can never replace the time you spend with your family.
2. Don’t Be an Enigma to Your Children
Take the time to talk to your children about yourself and your life. Don’t keep them guessing who you are. They shouldn’t find out things about you after you’re gone. Let them get to know you. Tell them your story so they can share it with their children.
3. Share What You Know
Your children will learn more from your mistakes than from your success. Give them insight into what you’ve learned. Share your skills, experiences and your talents.
4. Keep Your Children Out of Adult Conflicts
Whatever you do, make sure you don’t put your children in the middle of your conflicts. Even if someone else is doing it, be the bigger person. Don’t force your children to choose sides.
5. Be a Husband and a Father, Not a Baby Daddy
Things happen but I hope that you’ve been paying attention enough to know to protect yourself. Make sure you know who you’re getting involved with before you make a commitment to a relationship or parenting. Make sure your relationship is healthy and balanced. You want to bring your children into a home filled with love and peace.
6. Change Your Vocabulary From “Me, Mine, My” to “We, Us, and Our”
Once you become a parent, you relinquish your right to be selfish. You can not expect life to go on as normal. You can not expect others to pick up your slack. You have to compromise and make sacrifices.
7. Have Realistic Expectations of Your Children
Your son or daughter doesn’t have to like or enjoy the things you do. Your children are not miniature copies of you. Don’t try to live vicariously through them. Support their dreams.
8. Parenthood is Not About Perfection, But About Trial and Error
You’ll never really get it right. No book, expert advice can help you as much as being active and being involved in the lives of your children. You’ll make mistakes. Your children will challenge you. You’ll have power struggles and disappointments.
9. Your Children Will Learn More From Watching You Than Listening to You
Practice what you preach, otherwise your children will think you’re a hypocrite. They’ll watch everything you do and how you treat others.
10. Listen More Than You Speak
Your children need you to listen to them and respect their thoughts and opinions. Your children need to know you’re paying attention to them. What your children have to say is just as important as what you have to say.
11. Don’t Let Society Define Your Role as a Father
Society and the media will present to you how you should think or behave as a father. Do what is best for your family.
I do my best each day to walk the walk as a parent. I know that my sons need me to guide them and give them the tools they need to become great fathers.
What do you want your son to know before he becomes a father?
Photo courtesy of Flickr
I love this poem by Edgar Albert Guest. It exemplifies what a loving dad is to his children. The poem talks about a dad who despite facing the challenges of life still comes home to spend time with and enjoy his children. We are reminded that being an involved dad is a full-time job.
Only a Dad
If you're looking for a great example of a mature, responsible dad, then don't watch sitcoms. Shows such as Modern Family, Two and a Half Men, Everybody Loves Raymond, The Cleveland Show and Family Guy depict dads as goofy, irresponsible and unpredictable. The last mature sitcom dad I could think of was Clifford Huxtable on The Cosby Show.
Most of the dads on these shows are incompetent, needy and dependent. They are emasculated by their smart, educated and strong wives, who often come to their rescue because of their irresponsible passive behavior. These men can not be trusted to watch the clock, let alone their kids.
It hit me last night as I was watching The Cleveland Show with my son and realized that no one respects poor Cleveland. Although we laughed through the show, I couldn't help but think how the portrayal of dads on these shows somehow stereotype the men as dads. Yes, it's all for fun, but it makes me think how boys view their own manhood.
What message are we sending boys when he is watching a show where a dad can't be trusted to spend time with his own kids without getting into trouble. It bothers me when I se a disengaged father on tv, because to me it sends the message that as long as a dad is physically in the home, he does not need to be emotionally involved with his children.
I know many men offline and on line who do not fit these stereotypes but yet the media continues to reinforce this image of dad as a bumbling fool. The same way the catty, vindictive and often vicious behavior of women on show such as Real Housewives and Bad Girls Club shouldn't be condoned where is the outrage that most dads on tv misrepresent dads in real life. Is it me or is it a double standard?
There has to be a balance between empowering girls and women and encouraging boys and men to be men of honor and integrity.
I know that as a parent it is my responsibility to monitor what my sons watch on tv or the internet, and we do our best to have family discussions about expectations. I'm grateful that my husband, my father and my brother are not like these sitcom dads, but I still worry about how much the media influences boys and distorts the reality of fatherhood.
What are your thoughts on media portrayal of dads?
The father/son relationship is the least nurtured in the family. Fathers play an important role in their son's lives and as moms of boys we need to support and encourage these relationships.
- How to have self-control
- How to value his money
- How to manage his time
- How to practice safe sex
- How to give back to society
- How to tie a tie
- How to be self-disciplined
- How to lose graciously
- How to buy a suit
- How to change a tire
- How to buy a gift for the women in his life
- How to choose the right woman
- How to do laundry properly
- How to engage in a meaningful relationship
- How to tip at a restaurant
- How to properly shake a hand
- How to be accountable for his actions
- How to get out of an unhealthy relationship responsibly
- How to travel internationally
- How to dress for a job interview
- How to negotiate
- How to speak up and stand up for justice
- How to take care of his family
- How to rely on his faith
- How to put the seat down
What do you think should be added to the list?
"Silent" and "listen" are spelled with the same letters. Author Unknown
If you ask my son when he tunes me out, he will say "When she talks too long."
I know that boys and men just like the facts, nothing more. However, I always feel the need to add more value to our conversations with anecdotes, sayings and quotes. Each and every time, my son tells me that I don't have to continue because he gets it.
I'm also learning that you have to pick the right time to talk to your son. Trying to start a conversation when he is engaged in a solo activity is a not productive. Not only , will he tell you what you want to hear to get rid of you, he will only hear about 50% of what you said.
It's helpful to keep the conversation casual when the two of you are engaged in an activity. Then the conversation doesn't seem forced. It's also imperative that you listen without interrupting or offering unsolicited advice. That's the quickest way to end a conversation.
I share some of these tips and more on my free online class on March 8:
Ignorance annoys me. I am most annoyed when I see mothers berating their young sons for crying or showing any emotion when they are hurt. You really expect a three year old to "man up" when he is hurt? I particularly see this in the black community, where there seems to be a fear that having a boy that is sensitive and not aggressive is an indication of his sexuality. Get real!! I once saw a mother allow her baby to play with a stranger's pit bull to demonstrate his bravery. She kept telling the dog's owner, "He's not afraid. He's a man." Really?
How could you not expect a toddler or young child to cry when he is hurt? This concept of not crying or showing any emotion is contributing to so many boys and young men being stoic and aloof. This misconception that boys should be tough and rugged may lead to their inability to empathize with someone else who is pain. Why are we raising boys to have so much aggression? There is so much violence within certain communities and it can be attributed to this theory that a real man doesn't show his pain.
The truth is that most boys are more sensitive than girls. They're just not allowed to express their emotions. Boys are easily agitated but suppress this agitation by becoming sulky and moody. Even when experiencing distress,boys will not open up about the problem.
Let's stop conditioning boys to believe that they have to be like The Tin Man from Wizard of Oz. The world doesn't need any more emotionally immature men running around.
This cool infographic is courtesy of Better Parenting.com!
Parenting Styles Info From BetterParenting.com
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Great video on tips on helping your son to make honor roll. Too often, we set unrealistic expectations of our sons and express our disappointment with their academic performance. Dr. Tartt does make one controversial recommendation which is to pay your child for their grades. What are your thoughts are children getting paid for the grades they receive?