As we approach Father’s Day, it seems that the tyranny from women has begun early this year. I have been a single mother (parent) for sixteen years and to be quite honest, I am not a fan of my daughter’s father as a man or as a parent.
With that said, I think I’m qualified to share that no matter how many softball games I attend, and fund with the sun piercing my skin, and no matter how many scars I’ve put peroxide on or volunteer parent awards I have received from my child’s schools, it will not make me deserve recognition of being a father.
I am not a man. If you undress me, there is no surprise penis, I promise. In Genesis, it is clear that male and female were created. One came out of the dust of the ground and the other, the side of a man’s rib.
Men and women are compliments to each other and to reward a woman for doing a man’s work makes no sense. Men think differently than women. They offer different perspectives to the same situation. We see this in the media and especially when the topic of relationships arise.
No matter how exceptional my efforts are as a parent, and by the way I am a great parent (says my daughter), she still feels the emptiness of her father’s full-time connection. She also feels the impact of his constant promises that change without notice. Now she expects him to lie or change his story.
Think about it. When you are at work and you take on double responsibilities or work hours, you are not congratulated with your boss’s title, and you shouldn’t be because you made a choice to assume the responsibilities that were in front of you. It is your parental responsibility to make sure that you child has shoes, but Jordan’s are an option.
Men have a special place in a family as the head, as the father. A mother may assume responsibilities that traditionally belong to a man like terrorizing on the first date, throwing the ball around or teaching your child how to change a tire but that doesn’t quite make them a man.
Two-Parent Households: Two Fathers?
There are two parent households where the mother is just as super-human it seems as a single mother. In other words, a dad can be present fully, partially or absent but if your mother is as amazing as you see that she is, then you celebrate her character and her strength in her own right. She doesn’t have to become someone else or take the shine from anyone else. We are light like a city on a hill.
Your mother would have been strong, resilient, and relentless regardless of your situation. For example, if you say that you grew up in poverty and she worked three jobs, she would’ve done that if she had a terrific husband who was an amazing father who suffered a debilitating injury or illness. That doesn’t make her a father!
Allow Father’s their day to be recognized. This should not be looked at as racial either, although The Grio did a great job of pointing out that Mahogany which is the African-American Greeting Card line to Hallmark is exclusively selling these designs.
Families in general are broken, dysfunctional, plagued by abuse, absence, generational curses, and bondage. Every family has their story, and every individual has their own family experience. Please give Father’s their holiday back!
If your father was irresponsible, not around or in your opinion undeserving of honor, do not honor him. Until recent, I didn’t even notice Father’s Day as a holiday. I mean I knew that Father’s Day was celebrated in June but it is and has always been just another day.
How do you acknowledge a non-existent relationship? Instead of using this day to vent, think about someone who has stood in and given you advice from a male perspective. Otherwise, this is a man-made day. We are not required to celebrate or acknowledge it.
Businesses are motivated by supply and demand. The card concept will be discontinued when people choose to heal from the pain of absent fathers and employ new perspectives.
What is Co-Parenting?
On the other hand, Fathers please understand that fatherhood is just as full time as motherhood. Somewhere between child support and custody-drama people begin to allow the courts to dictate their relationships.
If the court has to tell you to see your child, they are doing so because you are not initiating efforts to do so, or there is too much parental friction. However understand that the courts require the minimum from you.
God never intended for Fathers to be weekend heroes. And for really dead-beat dads, he never intended for you to get your child and take the child to see your family while you run the streets.
Fatherhood is steeped in teaching. Being parent is very much about accepting the responsibility to train and guide your child. Of course, your co-parenting takes pressure off of the mother to be a better mother, but deeper than that, your children become who you teach them to be whether they choose to become what they perceive as better. In this case they are often cold, outwardly better, and inwardly resentful. Or, they literally become the man, or date the man who you are. Co-parenting should not be a term used for separating or divorced parents. Co-parenting is what both parents commit to at a child’s conception.
This is why it is important to choose wisely. In the heat of passion, we don’t think about these sensibilities. Are you sleeping with someone who you want to co-parent with, if say the condom breaks? Are you sleeping with someone that you believe you can have a partnership with for life?
Relationships can be challenging. Women are often quick to male bash because they are angry at what the father of their child(ren) are not doing. We are all adults and regardless of how women or men may feel about their co-parent, it is important to establish a relationship as parents (exclusively).
Continue to be who you are, without bashing the father or comparing your greatness to his inconsistencies. On Mother’s Day I’d be happy to say the same thing as well. This is a great opportunity to say,
“If you don’t have something good to say, don’t say anything at all!”
I wish all of the fathers an extraordinary day. Remember, you are your child’s first teachers. How you choose to treat your children now, is how they will treat you when you must be cared for later. If you impart morality they will exercise it in life, and with you.
Dr. Ressurrection Graves is a relationship mentor, conference speaker and author. She offers pastoral (relationship) counseling, and has been a teen-mother-single-parent for sixteen years. Dr. Graves is accepting conference, keynote and media-related speaking engagements to discuss full-time co-parenting and Ten Ways To Safeguard Your Child From Sexual Abuse.