Monday, October 8, 2007

Fathers are Much More than "Male Role Models"

I'm getting pretty tired of seeing things that treat being a father as just a "male role model."

A father is not a male role model. A father is an adult male that a child knows:
a) will take a bullet for them.
b) will work hard for many, many years, doing things he may or may not like, in order to provide a loving, secure home for his children.
c) loves the child enough to consider the well-being of that child the foundation of his worth as a person.

You can be a male role model if you teach a kid how to ride a bike, throw a curve ball, learn a trade or act on a date - all good and wonderful things. Fatherhood is an irrevocable, lifetime commitment to sacrifice - with grace and pride - for the benefit of a child. A child derives great benefit knowing that someone made those sacrifices for them.

5 comments:

antiprincess said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
antiprincess said...

A father is an adult male that a child knows:
a) will take a bullet for them.
b) will work hard for many, many years, doing things he may or may not like, in order to provide a good home for his children.
c) loves the child enough to consider the birth of that child a blessed event in his life.

wow. that's quite stirring.

it bears no resemblance to the experience I had with my father (not to mention the experiences anyone I know had with their fathers), but it is certainly stirring and optimistic.

this part interests me:

b) will work hard for many, many years, doing things he may or may not like, in order to provide a good home for his children.

my dad refused a tenure-track position out west somewhere in order to be close to me. (he and my mom divorced when I was small.) he never let me forget it, big whomping disappointment that I am. seriously, I'd rather he had gone out west. then he would have been happy and I would have been happy.

just out of curiosity, what constitutes a "good home", in your estimation?

me personally, if my husband thinks it's of any benefit to me to drag himself through some craptacular nine-to-five gig that grinds him into paste, only to come home (maybe to a nice house, yeah) miserable and soulsick, he's sadly mistaken. A "good home" is made up (at least partly) of parents who don't hate their lives.

Sweating Through fog said...

"just out of curiosity, what constitutes a "good home", in your estimation?"

To me it's a place of love and security.

What I wrote was part my view of an ideal, and I'm certainly not suggesting I'm ideal or every father is. From what you wrote, I'm wondering if I should add a qualifier to my second trait - being able to make the sacrifice with enough grace and nobility not to make the people around you miserable with guilt.

antiprincess said...

I get you.

Sweating Through fog said...

AP: thanks for you comment - you reminded me of something very important, and something all too easy to forget. I revised my post accordingly.