It’s two weeks until the annual surge in tie buying by 5 year olds culminates in a Sunday morning of burnt toast, runny eggs and hand drawn cards that make grown cry. The ritual that is Father’s day is almost upon us and for those lucky enough to have their fathers still in their lives it is a special day to reach out, say Thank You, and do something for the man in your life who taught you so many lessons they are too numerous to recall.
For men, your father was the role model of what to be, or not. Sometimes bad fathers make the greatest teachers, but most men strive to be the best fathers and role models for their children they can be. Men teach other men how to be men. We communicate to each other what is acceptable behavior and what is not. How a man acts in this world is frequently a direct result of the relationship he had with his father.
Women learn from their fathers what to expect of a man. It’s why fathers are so pivotal in a young girl’s life. She will learn from her dad what to tolerate, and what not to put up with from a man. A strong father daughter bond, will create a young woman who seeks out healthy men who are respectful and loving. A weak, or missing, bond and it creates a hole in the soul that will never be filled.
This Father’s Day, I want to encourage everyone to reach out and thank not just their father, but the other men in their lives that have contributed to their journey. I say this because I think that oftentimes there are father figures who are forgotten or overlooked on this day. I have one friend who has four “dads” in her life. Her mother liked to get married, and with each new marriage, came a new “dad” for my friend.
She worked hard to keep those relationships going long past the time they were no longer “her mother’s husband” but they remained her “dad” because they meant something to her. Each one taught her lessons on men and relationships and love. Each one of her “dads” was given love and attention throughout the year, but especially on Father’s Day.
I learned something important from her – that we don’t have to be biologically, or legally related to someone to consider them a dad. To thank them for the contributions they made to our lives. It is in that spirit that I want to encourage you to reach out to the mentors in your life and thank them this Father’s Day. They may not be your relatives, they may not be legally related to you, but if they have had a positive effect on your life, if they have taught you valuable lessons, or been there to pick up the pieces when things fell apart – take the time and send them a card, write how important they are, and how grateful you are, for them in your life.
Reaching out to those who have helped up along the journey is rewarding to them, and to us. The more we thank those who lent us a hand, the more meaningful this coming Father’s Day will be. It won’t take long, or cost much, but I know that it will be priceless to the one who gets that card that says Thank You for being in my life and showing me the way.
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