Brandon Billinger argues that being an involved father is not a new phenomenon; it’s what dads have been doing for generations
Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about dads who are involved in raising their kids. It seems to be a topic that I am talking more and more about too. I have even been talking about it with co-workers and they think it is pretty neat the things that I do with my son.
They seem shocked that I sit down and play Candy Land with him or that I built the most massive set of train tracks with him to play with his Thomas the Tank Engines. They drop their jaws when they learn that I read with him and my wife each and every night before going to bed. They are mesmerized by the fact that I am a daddy blogger and that I am taking an active role in raising him.
This is normal for me though.
As I was talking with one of my co-workers and I spoke to her about my blog that I write, she asked me what I thought about the picture of the dad who was multi-tasking with their infant in a sling and he was doing his little girls hair. I told her, that it is normal for a dad to do that sort of thing and I have no idea why it went viral. After a few short seconds she agreed with me. She understood immediately where I was coming from.
I will admit that the picture of the dad doing his daughter’s hair while his youngest is in a carrier is cute. Why it made a big deal is beyond me. There are plenty of other dads out there doing the exact same thing that are NOT getting the recognition. I bet you, there is a dad who has already taken a picture like that and posted on the internet without it going viral. It is normal for dads to be involved and taking an active part in their families.
When you think about it, by me saying that everything I do is for my family, is not very different then what dads did 75 years ago. They went to work every day to provide for their families. They went to fight for their countries so that their children could grow up in a better world than they themselves grew up in. Even 75 years ago, family was first among dads, but it was difficult to shine light on the subject.
In that 75 years though, think about what has made this world smaller—the Internet. Now you are seeing pictures of dad nearly every day that are either playing with or taking care of their kids. The normal hasn’t necessarily changed but been brought to light because of technology. Commercial media outlets have exploited the upsurge in dads taking to the Internet to prove to the world that they are involved and begun to use it to keep people glued to the TV sets to see something “cute.”
You can say that I write my blog to gain recognition of involved fathers. It isn’t about that though. I write my blog because I want to leave something for my son. I want him to see what kind of father I was so that later on in life, he can learn what not to do. Of course I am joking, but I want him to realize the struggles that I had as a father and learn from what I did, so that he can be a better father than I was. I don’t write my blog for to get praise for the fact that I am involved as a father.
You see, this to me is normal to me.
Article originally appeared on TheRookieDad.com; Image courtesy of the author