With Father’s Day quickly approaching, I figured there was no time like the present to take a minute to “stir the pot” so to speak when looking at the men in the women’s lives all around me. It seems like when Father’s Day comes around, all Fathers, (and I use that term loosely), want to suddenly step up and take credit for being a dad. But let’s get real for a minute, just because you assisted in creating life, does not mean you are doing the work that comes with being a dad. You have on again, off again fathers, baby daddies, dudes that are obviously around because they feel responsible but are miserable because of it, women, jumping into new relationships and pushing their children onto boyfriends, and everything in between. Then you actually have DADS who deserve all the credit they rarely get, and often aren’t even looking for.
Let’s first address women, because they say behind every good man is a great woman…or so the saying goes. I have begun to think that saying is all wrong. In truth, it should be at the very least “next to” every man, and unfortunately more often than not, it’s actually the woman leading the way. Don’t get me wrong, this is not me jumping up on my feminist soapbox. I am just making observations. Society has run amuck. It has become perfectly acceptable for dudes to act like fools instead gentlemen. The worst part about it is, most women are fully accepting of mediocre behavior. I have seen more relationships as of late, where men are encouraging their significant other to go out and work a better job, longer hours, pay the bills, and in more ways than one “wear the pants”, while they sit home, un-driven, and unmotivated to do better. So, are they then switching roles a little and contributing more to the traditional “woman’s” role of raising the children? Not often. Women are going out, working hard, striving to be better, and still coming home to a dirty house and unfed kids.
I am in no way putting myself above this madness. Often during my marriage I continually said to myself, “a man’s work is from sun to sun, but a woman’s work is never done”. I didn’t understand the double standard with my ex-husband. He could go out to work, and actually find time to sit down and play video games while in the same day I could go out to work, and then come home and still be cooking, cleaning, and handling the full time job of kids until I was physically falling asleep on my feet, and still not having accomplished all the daily tasks. I used to think, it would be nice to sit down for a minute and watch TV, or read a book, or even take a piss. I was every bit as guilty of allowing mediocre men’s behavior as some of the women around me now. I am not proud to admit it, but I even went to online school for my ex-husband, doing all his work for him and getting HIM a college degree, all because he said it would allow him to get a better part time career to provide for us, his family. But in truth, he never did use the degree, or get a part time job. He fell in to the category of rather seeing his wife, mother of his children, go out and get two or three jobs to make more money, so he wouldn’t have to work as hard to provide.
Then there are the men who just act like when children are born, they suddenly have no clue. No clue on how to feed babies, or change them, or do any of that “daddy dirty work”. What do women do? Take said child, and do it for them! Trust me, this is what the daddy really wanted anyways. I have personally witnessed women who could not leave their child with the baby’s father for more than a few hours at a time, and then I’ve witnessed women who do, but probably shouldn’t. That’s scary. Scarier is that as women, we are accepting of that. Women are afraid of getting their men in check, and often don’t even see it until they are doing 90% of the work.
It takes a LOT to be a dad. Any man can donate a seed, but to be a DAD requires work. Work that lately seemingly most men don’t truly want to put in. What does the man you love do for you? How does he contribute to your relationship? How does he contribute to your family? How does he make you better? Children are like sponges. They are constantly observing, and soaking up that in which surrounds them. Are they seeing a good man, who strives to be better, is driven and hard working, who has family values, who supports his family and woman, or helps mold and shape them as individuals, who spends quality time with them? Or are they seeing a man who sits around calling himself a dad, while he allows mom to do 90% of the work while he plays videogames? Our children will be the parents of tomorrow’s world. They are our legacy that we leave behind when we go. Don’t they deserve all the attention we can possibly give them? WE are creating our future. So, ask yourself, do I want my son to be the type of father his father is?
And to the real Dads who do put in the work…. Bravo. If you have a man who is leading by example, loving his children, working hard, supporting his woman, and taking an equal role in parenting… ladies, hold on to them. Unfortunately, they seem to be a dying breed. It is never too late to stand up and demand more. Unless you are ok with mediocrity.