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Thursday, June 21, 2012


The attached article is a worthwhile read. So many good thoughts. What it brought to mind for me was (story time):

The writer mentions a scenario where a new dad should stand up for himself if someone puts him down as being clueless because he is "just the dad". I say, "AMEN!"

One time, I was talking with an older women, a lady who I respected, and my older two boys (24 and 21 now but who were maybe only 11 and 8 at that time) were near by and could hear our conversation. She repeated something I had heard her say several times before during the years I had known her. She stated, "Men are still just little boys you have to take care of," (she was referring to a primary relationship in her life). I politely and respectfully but firmly and clearly said, "You cannot ever say that around my children. If that has been your experience then I'm sad for you but you cannot say things like that around my sons” (and now I would add “or my daughter”).

In my lifetime men (and boys) have been told by both liberal and conservative groups that men have not done enough to take care of their families. To be clear - SOME MEN HAVEN'T. I have grown up watching movie after movie and show after show that depict men...and especially fathers...as being insensitive, self-centered, adolescent, self-absorbed a-holes. Some actors (and I like watching these guys) have made careers off of playing the character I just described...the jerk adult male who never grew up, never dealt with his "daddy-issues" and always puts himself and his personal angst before his family's needs (e.g. - Billy Crystal, Tim Allen, Eddie Murphy when he got older). These depictions almost always end with some great self-discovery that causes the main character to want to be a better father, husband and man.

Men, when you find yourself in a situation where this stuff is being dished out like it's the truth then it is time to properly identify it for what it is...BS! Do it nicely...do it politely...do it gentlemanly...but do identify it for what it is. My kids have grown up hearing me say (whenever they are watching a show like I mentioned above), "Oh, I know the name of this show. It's called, 'Dad's the Idiot'." In fact, now I just ask my younger two kids, "You know what the name of this show is, don't you?" and they know the answer (and sometimes, the answer is, "The Parents are the Idiots"...the Disney Channel has quite a few of these shows)

So, gentlemen...if you're being more like the guys at the beginning of these movies instead of the men at end of these movies then make a change. If your father was a terrible example or no example at all then look around and find some good ones because they are everywhere.

Ladies...if you have the thought and attitude that "all men are just little boys" then stop and ask yourself, "Why do I seem to attract and surround myself with dumba**es?" and then find some of these same examples of good men and great fathers I mentioned above so that you can have better men in your life (and possibly in your kids' lives).

I know some fathers who do a very poor job but I know so many more men who inspire me to be better for my kids and others in my life (some of these men are not fathers but the quality of their character encourages me to be better in my parenting). I know some very poor mothers but I know so many more women who inspire me to be better for my kids and others in my life. If, to you, either gender seems like they are all the same then let me help you with something...you need to open your eyes and your mind. If you look for all women to be _____, then guess what, you'll find the evidence to prove you're right. If you think all men are _____, then...(yeah...you know where I'm going with this.)

Now, please click the link and read the article. The writer, Valerie Isakova, does a better job than I do of listing some traits of good fathers...on the other hand, I do a better job of ranting ;-)

Cliff
Being a great father is like shaving.
No matter how good you shaved today,
you have to do it again tomorrow.

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