The grill king, the comedian, the problem fixer — the countless roles he fills is endless, but all in all, we can just refer to him as Dad.
Ahead of Father’s Day this year on June 21st, for anyone that may have forgotten, we thought we’d delve deep into what it means to be a dad in 2020, while offering a few tips on excelling in that all important paternal role.
The modern-day dad
From taking us to football practice on a Saturday morning when they’ve just came off nightshift to helping us learn how tectonic plates work ahead of our exam despite not knowing a thing about geography, there is no denying that dads are a pretty special breed.
When Mum would inevitably say ‘no’, (which, in all fairness to her, is usually the sensible answer), Dad will often say ‘maybe’.
The relationship between a father and his child nowadays will, likely, be very different to that of what he had with his father. Todays dads are found to spend up to three times more time with their kids as dads two generations ago did.
In a study by Brigham Young University, it became apparent that millennial dads spend more time, provide more care, and are more loving. Meanwhile, Rob Falkowitz of the University of Delaware notes that: “Kids with involved dads thrive and so do the dads.”.
The Aka Tribesmen of in the Central African Republic are depicted as the “best dads in the world, thanks to the fact that when the mums are out hunting, they fill that otherwise maternal void. According to reports, no dads spend more time with their little bambinos than these men.
However, simply being present isn’t always enough. Take football for example — you can have a goalkeeper standing in the net, but if he doesn’t move, goals will still be conceded.
Teach them about self-esteem
Perhaps more important in 2020 than ever before thanks to the sheer dominance that social media plays in young people’s lives, an understanding of the importance of self-esteem is essential.
Remember to tell them of their value. We aren’t suggesting that you spend every minute of every day emphasising their perfection but talking to them and listening to their problems is very important.
Create a healthy work-life balance
It’s important that you provide for your kids and create a positive environment for them to grow up in. Getting up everyday and putting on your suit or workwear is important, of course, but so is spending time with the ones you love — don’t allow your job to dictate your relationship with your kids.
Help them develop their passions
Not every child will pick up a wooden spoon for the first time and display the abilities of Mary Berry, nor will they lift a tennis racket and place a top spin on a ball like Roger Federer, but that’s not a problem. Go on that journey with them as they discover what they’re good at and what they’re not.
Don’t let them feel as if they are wasting their time, and help them find something they enjoy doing!
Teach them right from wrong
Every child requires discipline. Without it they could end up navigating the wrong path in life. Again, this shouldn’t be a surprise but by rewarding good behaviour and penalising bad you will ensure that your child grows up knowing right from wrong.
Most importantly, however, discipline your kids with love and positivity, in a calm and fair manner.
Stand out as your child’s role model
Whether it be Instagram influencers, celebrities, or sports stars, our children have a plethora of options available when it comes to picking role models. However, the number one role models they should have are their parents.
A father should teach his kids what it means to be respectful, to be loving, to act with humility, and how to be responsible.
Focus on yourself
You are your own person — don’t let yourself be compared to other dads as every situation is different. This is something that you need to master yourself before passing it on to your kids.
Yes, Peter from No.34 might have a newer car, a bigger house, and take his family on more holidays every year but that doesn’t mean anything — for all you know Peter is repetitively tapping his friends Mr Barclaycard and Mrs Amex.
Do your best, that is all you can do.
This Father’s Day is different to any other due to the fact we’re still in lockdown. You won’t be granted your visit to the pub after you’ve been on the receiving end of a wonderful cooked meal, but that creates an opportunity. This year, don’t just see Father’s Day as a day where people are grateful for you, think of all the people you are grateful for, and think just how you can better your dad status ahead of next year!