Wisdom//

Here’s What 5 Celebrity Dads Can Teach Us about the Power of Fatherhood

These parenting lessons are universal.

Mike Marsland / Contributor / Getty Images / Samir Hussein / Contributor / Getty Images / Alberto E. Rodriguez / Staff / Getty Images
Mike Marsland / Contributor / Getty Images / Samir Hussein / Contributor / Getty Images / Alberto E. Rodriguez / Staff / Getty Images

Prince Harry shared his thoughts on becoming a dad in a recent speech to the Commonwealth Youth Roundtable in London, saying, “As someone who is about to become a father, I am acutely aware of our shared responsibility to make this world more resilient and its inhabitants more accountable for the next generation.The only way to see real progress is not by chance, it’s by change.”

The Duke of Sussex isn’t the only father (current or prospective) to speak out about parenting, and the ways it affects how we think about meaning. Here’s what four other celebrity dads have said about the lessons they’ve learned as parents.

David Beckham thinks being a dad is “more important than anything”

The former soccer player told the Daily Mirror in 2011 about how much his family means to him, saying, “In my career there are many things I’ve won, and many things I’ve achieved… But my greatest achievement is my family. What matters is being a good father and a good husband – just being connected to family as much as possible. Being a dad is more important than football, more important than anything.”

Idris Elba tries to be as present as possible

The actor told Cosmopolitan about his daughter Isan, “[We] adore each other and we dedicate time to be with each other. More than anything you have to make time to be with your children… It’s something I battle a lot because of my career, because as much as it’s nice to be busy and working, ultimately children don’t raise themselves. You’ve got to be there to help them and guide them through it. That’s one thing I try my very best to do.”

Stephen Colbert thinks fathers should feel comfortable making mistakes

The comedian and Late Show host jokingly wrote about this in his book, I Am America (And So Can You!): “You can’t spell ‘parentry’ without ‘try.’ Of course, you’ll make a few mistakes. The important thing is that the mistakes you make with your kids are the same ones your parents made with you. At least you know how those turn out.”

And while Colbert is kidding, his larger message, that occasional little parenting mistakes are normal, and not worth massive amounts of stress, is an important one. And of course, if you have made a mistake, there are healthy ways to recover after messing up.

George Clooney wants his kids to recognize their privilege and be empathetic

The actor opened up about his hopes for the twins he shares with his wife, human rights lawyer Amal Clooney, at the Toronto Film Festival in 2017. “Just because you happen to have been born into a sort of lucky situation in many ways, certainly not into poverty and into some place of luxury, you want to make sure they’re empathetic and compassionate. That they learn all the things I was taught as a young man about how we’re only successful as a country as the people who are least successful,” he said. “I think that’s going to be a challenge, to try to constantly remind our kids that being born in one place doesn’t give you the right to just ignore everyone else’s difficulties.”

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