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Ode to a Good Father
A picture of a good father
Good father versus the Best father...
I am not a man or a father that I could truly understand and proclaim all the merits and virtues that come with fatherhood, but I will endeavor to try here. I merely want to qualify the existence and necessity of fathers, having been a recipient of, contributed to and been a beneficiary of it in my life. Even if my father was not a “good” father in the sense that we consider a good father example to be nowadays, can I honestly say that I had not wanted him in my life because he was lacking in today’s standard? My dad was a typical example of fathers back in the 60’s and 70’s, still following in the footsteps of the father’s before him: an implicit and unchanging edict: father’s went to work to provide the finances for the family, but the mothers were the ones who nurtured, disciplined, guided, directed under the structure of the father’s household rules. That is the way I was raised: father knew best and you didn’t question it and never told him so (until I got in my teens anyway).
I’ve asked myself this question: would I’ve preferred to not have had him in my life? Or been raised in a single parent-home (believe me the topic was brought up for a season in our lives)? Now, looking back I can unequivocally say: No! As a result of still having my father in my life and providing for me and my siblings and his grandchildren, I can irrevocably say: I am who I am because of him, and more specifically the other fathers in my life who took on the role of fatherhood, that shaped the mental image of a good father. My dad as he is growing older is becoming a better father. He’s finally admitting that he doesn’t always know best, and that his legacy is still being written as we speak.
Verbal Portrait of "The Good Dad"
To be a Father is harder than becoming a Father
The author Ken Nerburn said: “It is much easier to become a father, than to be one”. Certainly a man by definition becomes a father through the exchange of his genetic material which is necessary for a female egg to become an embryo, i.e. a child. Plenty of children have entered the world this way, but what became apparent through years of research and observation that children needed their fathers to be in their world for the long-run. Responsible fathers or good fathers are the segue to the good of societies. The past, present and future of our society depends on fathers, however much we women squirm to have this acknowledged, however much we think the world has changed, we still live in a man’s world, and we are genetically wired to approach life and deal with it from that perspective.
As I’ve grown up, I have always worked in some form or fashion in the education field, and time and time again the adage has surfaced that it is far easier to train up children, teach children, instruct children than it is to train, teach, instruct, or fix adults. Certainly Frederick Douglass , Benjamin Franklin, S.Truett Cathy, Bill Cosby, Jim Daly, Tony Dungy and Dr. Benjamin Carson, even our President Obama must be on to something when their consistent message is: Good Fathers matter a lot!
Countless words have been written and spoken and countless money has been spent to get the message out to the men and women alike that committed fathers are equivalent to good fathers. Whether the father actually lives at home or is on the road a lot, the fact that he provides for his children sends a strong emotional message: that he cares.
I didn’t want to boil it down to one-liners because it is more complicated than that. However, I have to ask the question: are all the fathers (even in leadership positions), doing our families and the future of this country and its people a great disservice when they allow runaway debt, irresponsible spending, unsubstantiated lending that is setting the next generation up for fiscal slavery and an economic holocaust?
Consider that our founding fathers like Franklin and Jefferson realized back then the importance of policies that provided everyday parents, fathers and mothers, the means and moral character by which to raise our future fathers, mothers and leaders. Maybe it does boil down to that. What would be the sign of a Good Father that shows he cares? He provides for his children and his children’s children and teaches them fiscal responsibility so their families and their communities are taken care of.
Thanks Dad, My Father-in-Law and my Husband, my Brother and my Brother-in-Law for being good fathers, and to all the other committed fathers out there: Happy Father’s Day!
 2016 Father's Day Message: http://livestream.com/SuncoastVideo/events/5591242 & https://www.yahoo.com/health/kevin-frazier-on-why-its-never-too-late-to-be-a-121778769763.html & Michael Jr. - Comedian: