The breadwinner, the disciplinarian, the guy who wrestles with sons and dotes on daughters – this is likely what comes to mind when you think of fathers. The traditional role has been one of supporter and teacher, but today fathers are allowed and encouraged to be so much more. Look at your family and around your local community and you’ll see fathers taking a far more active role. Look around and you’ll find a treasure in these men.
It’s a New World
Modern-day dads change diapers, take care of midnight feedings, cook dinners, and carpool kids. Dads are the trustworthy guide through the challenging parts of childhood and the teen years. They are the guys in your local community coaching the kids sports teams and volunteering at local charity events. They are no longer just the guy who works hard at the office all day to feed his family.
Not all men are comfortable with this new, softer side of fatherhood. They may be reticent to fix their daughter’s hair, to cry at a sad movie in front of their kids, or to step outside of the traditional role and help clean the house. But as new generations of dads are born I imagine that “being manly” will become more about stepping up in any capacity that’s needed. They are the unsung heroes in many lives and increasingly are becoming an inspiration for defining fatherhood for future generations.
Creating a Bond That’s Out of This World
My husband lost his father at an early age and it had a huge impact on who he is today. He made a vow to himself to be an involved, loving father – to never let his child miss him even if he was still living. He has more than succeeded. The relationship he has with our son is filled with laughter and includes lots of time spent doing the things they both enjoy. It’s also filled with great trust, honest discussion, and genuine expressions of love. There is no fear in either of them about hugging and saying “I love you.” It fills me with joy to watch them together and to know that my son is learning to be a good person, a good man, and one day a good husband and father.
Give Them the World
This Father’s Day, look around your local community for the unsung heroes of parenthood, see the fathers in your family and view them all in a different light. Not just as the strong and trustworthy financial provider but also as the necessary compliment to mothers. Treasure them as the one who provides strength that comes from a place of love, and discipline that comes from a place of tenderness and caring. No matter how much they may try to hide it, dads are all just those little boys who may have wanted something more from their fathers, like time, attention, approval, or love. Know they are strong but give them permission to be softer. Love them regardless.