dads rock: nurturing father engagement
so long mr. mom!
"With an increasing majority of women joining the full-time workforce and families commonly relying on dual incomes to make ends meet, the movement of guys taking more prominent roles in parenting continues to progress, driven by both necessity and personal preference."
Boston Parents Paper's Brian Spero spoke with Haji Shearer, the director of the Fatherhood Initiative at The Children’s Trust, and others to help cast aside the lies, myths, and stereotypes that have characterized fatherhood for too long. The featured article, So Long Mr. Mom!, is an in-depth look at how modern dads are taking positive new roles in parenting.
Shearer feels many of the challenges dads like Johnson face are part of a leftover cultural legacy. “Even though many of us didn’t grow up in that 1950s Father Knows Best family, that’s the image instilled,” he says. Years ago, guys could punch the “dad ticket” by simply playing the role of provider and disciplinarian. “Now we’re asking dads to also take on additional roles of feeding and homework and school meetings and doctors appointments and all these other things that moms would have done before. I really think it’s helping men increase our emotional satisfaction and emotional competence in being involved with young children in ways we never were previously,” he says.
Spero also spoke with father-of-three John Falco of Medford, who found his groove as a dad with support from the Medford Family Center.
Falco says he never felt a stigma about taking an active role in the lives of his children, even if at first he might not have been as prepared for parenting as his wife. “She was ready. It was a complete natural fit. I was probably like, am I doing this right?” he confides. But what really made him feel confident in being a dad was getting involved with other parents through the Medford Family Network, a local children’s center where he could access a diverse range of programs for parents. “You meet moms and dads and it’s great because everybody comes together to share their stories and challenges.”
Read the whole article here.
We are delighted and grateful to see the stereotypes associated with fatherhood that are really a relic of the 20th century being challenged so effectively. Join us this Father's Day to continue to flip the script from clueless, macho, and useless to nurturing, loving, devoted, protective, supportive, affectionate, responsible, proud, and involved.