The Running Commentary


On being a father and dad……..

With Fathers Day having just past I have been thinking about my role as a father.  I had been quite contemplative about it and even became quite emotional about it this past Sunday.

I was wondering how, if ever, I was going to be able to live up to my children’s expectations. I then realised that I was not even sure what they were.  As I write this, I am still not sure what they are because I have not even asked them!  I wonder how many other dad’s have made a similar mistake.

I guess I have assumed some sort of expectation of the role on my part. I have made a number of assumptions about what they should expect from me, as their dad, and I am trying my best to live these out. They might not be wildly wrong but, I may in fact be disappointing them, they may not have the expectations of me.

I didn’t have the privilege of growing up with my dad, although I had amazing friends whose dads played a role in my life. I only met my dad when I was 20, on my birthday in fact and we get on like a house on fire, for that I am immensely grateful.  My challenge, therefore, has been that in my role as a father I have had to look to different places for inspiration and ideas. Many people I encounter, despite having fathers in their lives, do not wish to imitate them, and find themselves in a similar place to me.

So I have reached somewhat of an interesting place.  I have a basic understanding of being a dad; I follow the culturally accepted norms of being a dad. I don’t think that I am doing a bad job by the way! I have not, however, checked in with the two most important critics, my children!

 So I am really writing this post for a couple of reasons:

 One, for my wife, so that when she reads this she can help me remember to chat to our wonderful children about what they want Daddy to be more like.

Two, to other fathers out there who may, after reading this, find themselves in a similar situation!

Three, as a reminder to anyone out there who is in a parenting role, speak to your children, let them tell you what they want and need.

Fourthly and probably most importantly, as a message to my children (which they will find one day when they are surfing the net!) I love you guys a tonne and I want to be the best dad that I can be, so if it seems like I am asking you dumb questions, it is only because I want to find out how better I may serve you as your dad!


Mike • June 21, 2010

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  2. Ray June 21, 2010 - 1:53 pm

    Certainly something to think about.
    I think a lot of dads and i include myself would be afraid to ask there children because that would mean that you would have to act on it. Parenting is already hard work, though rewarding.
    Thank you, you have given me food for thought.

  3. Mike June 21, 2010 - 4:17 pm

    Hi Ray,

    Many thanks for dropping by and taking the time to comment. Yip parenting is not easy and I guess I learn something about it each day! It is though one of the greatest jobs in the world.

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