A New Purpose for Father’s Day

As a father myself, I appreciate a day that acknowledges me and and my role as a male parent.  It is very nice to be appreciated.  However, I believe there is more to Father’s Day than funny cards, neck ties, argyle socks and a round of golf.  Those things are great, but there is something more important that is usually overlooked.  Father’s Day should be a time where all men do a little soul searching about what it means to be a father.  We should be asking ourselves what influence do we have on our children – particularly our sons.  What impact do we make in our families and in our communities?

I say “all men” should do this because these days, the role of the traditional father isn’t what it used to be.  So often children are being raised in homes where the “father” isn’t engaged, involved, or sometimes even present.  Therefore, the role of the “father” gets passed on to any male role model willing to take it on.  We must recognize that all men have a part in raising the children in their lives.  Every interaction we have with a child is an opportunity to pass on a version of masculinity that is thoughtful, kind, generous, caring, loving and most importantly involved.  It is also an opportunity to dispel the myth that men have to always be tough, strong, rugged, silent and uninvolved.  If we do not do this, then traits such as compassion and empathy will continue to be thought of as feminine traits.  This is damaging to men and boys because we all feel things like compassion but are forced to hide it out of fear.  We are afraid that we will lose our social standing in the male community for expressing traits and qualities that have long been considered unmanly.  We must recognize that these traits are not male or female, but human traits that all humans experience.

So my Father’s Day gift to all men is permission.  I give you permission to be your authentic selves.  I give you permission to explore your role as a father and to be all of the things you were meant to be to your child and to the other children in your life.  I give you permission to reflect on what being a “father” is really all about and to change the things about yourself that need changing.  Lastly, I give you permission to support other men in their efforts to be better male role models and to create gender equality.

Now that would be something to celebrate!

Happy Father’s Day!!!

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3 thoughts on “A New Purpose for Father’s Day

  1. evan austin says:

    fantastic! thank you for those permission reminders…i shared your article with others, and it’s quite popular. a friend added: permission to cry. happy father’s day!

  2. Hi Evan! Thanks for reading and sharing the blog. I know I constantly have to give myself those same permission reminders. Adding permission to cry is a must along with permission ot express a full range of emotions. Keep sharing!!! Ted

  3. AVion Beasley says:

    Hi , i find your article enlightening and useful. However,It left me a bit confused. A male has several shoes to fill in order to qualify as a male, let alone a figure as one. If we travel down the road of a “male FIGURE” we have to as what all does this require to qualify? What roles does a “MALE” be a part of? How shall he care these parts out and to what end. So, first i must understand what shoe’s a male must wear but i have to know the type of shoe also. Traditional or modern male shoes.
    Types of shoe…
    1. dad or father
    2. husband or lover
    3. leader or follower
    4. Stand strong or run fast
    5. challenge and controversy or comfort and convenience
    6. do what needs to be done first or do what we want to do
    7. the hero or the villain
    8. protector or by stander

    2nd we need to understand that figure of something is and image or a substitute, we will use it as the “road” to transformation. I use transformation in this example is because as a male gender is suppose to begin as one thing and become something more. However it does not say that we can not loose our way and become it again.

    3rd, for any male with a reason or purpose he we want to become the first column (the meat of the course), Dad, husband, leader,stand strong, challenge and controversy, do what needs to be done, the hero, and the protector.
    You are right a male doesn’t have to follow traditional methods of what a male is. although he does need more than meat to eat. I believe that your permission is just that. it is the fixings and utensils that makes the meal. I believe that a male should be strong because it is what is needed not just because he can, nor should he be soft just because he is afraid to hurt someones feeling. A male is a teacher, instructor, and the foundation of the world he is a part of. Every child is not the same every woman is not the same and every situation will not be the same. As a male we must be able and/or willing to do what must be done no matter the cost. for if we are not we may face be faced with repercussions of catastrophic proportions. We can not stop everything but we can prevent the amount of that in-which we can. Wen need to be more than just a male figure in this modern time. We should be strong men in tough times, and this is what separates the boys from the men, the dads from the fathers, the husbands from the lover, the leaders from the followers and so on. To be a man or parent is knowing that you have done all that you can, and that you have given all that you are to provide yourself and your family with what ever is needed at that moment. rather it is listening more and speaking less, learning how to cook, going back to school, helping around the house even after you have worked for 12 hrs, what ever that moment calls for. Real men don’t need easy, they simply need possible. Easy is what life gives you as a reward for all your hard work and devotion to never give up when you are called upon.

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