Without fail, my children ask me to go outside every day. It doesn’t matter if I have worked twelve hours straight. My three little ones will want me to take them outside. I am tired at the end of my day, but I take them out anyway.
On most evenings, they are not looking for me to play with them. The group of children who live in our apartment complex offer equal energy and games to play. My children need me to supervise and keep them safe.
The other children in our neighborhood are often allowed outdoors alone. Some parents do not feel the need to supervise. Either an older sibling watches the younger child or they are entrusted by a guardian to be mindful of traffic and to make mature decisions.
My wife and I are not helicopter or lawnmower parents. We do insist on our children being under adult supervision for about fourteen hours every day. They are allowed to go to the bathroom and sleep without our watchful eyes! I expect them to play and to study in an earshot of me, my wife, or another responsible adult.
In the US, Trump has declared an emergency. The debate over whether to build a wall between the US and Mexico has #45 throwing an adult temper tantrum. In addition to the support of xenophobia among some members of the US population, other issues such as homicides, drug-related offenses, hate crimes, corporate lies, and other challenges persist and prevent America from being “great again.” A lot is going on in this world.
Antigua is not a utopia. Challenges exist in education, healthcare, and governmental affairs in the Caribbean. Whether I live in the US, Antigua, or any other country my children’s safety is of the utmost importance to me.
As a father, I take my responsibilities seriously. I must meet their financial and socio-emotional needs. It is also mandatory that I do my best to protect them.
I encourage fathers to reassess their roles in their children’s lives.
During this time in history, It is vital that we play an active part in our households. We have professional responsibilities and personal desires, but they should not supersede the blessing to serve as the dad to a young person.
Marcus Aurelius said, “Do not act as if you were going to live ten thousand years.“ Life is a gift and can be taken away at any moment. Use today and every day possible to spend time with your child. Our children need us.
For assistance with understanding the importance of handling professional and personal responsibilities, explore the leadership lessons in this self-paced online course.
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