Here I am again internet, bestowing upon thee my boundless wisdom and perfection. At least when it comes to parenting, which, once again, I’ve got down pat yo. I’m not even sure if I’m being sarcastic anymore, to be honest. You guys are going to come to your own conclusions anyway. Is this satire? Isn’t it? Is the Matrix real?
Well, anyway, this time I have deigned to address those fathers which could use some work. Buck up gentlemen, some of you might seriously suck.
(You mad, bro?)
1. The ‘How Old Is My Kid, Again?” Dad
I get that you have a nuclear family, okay? You work, your wife stays at home with the kiddo(s), and that’s totally cool dude, whatever works for you. But the fact that you seriously don’t seem to know what grade your kid is in, what their favorite color is, or how old they actually are is preeeetty shitty. Also, I suspect you just made up that middle name.
That’s the fruit of your loins, might be nice if you took some time to get to know it. Maybe?
2. The ‘Everything in Life is a Competition. Everything.’ Dad
Holy shit! Your kid totally tied her shoes faster than mine! I bet that’s a sure sign she’s going to Harvard and will totally be a doctor someday. She also just picked her nose and ate a very large booger. Mmmmm, tasty. You win again!
3. The ‘Overenthusiastic Sports’ Dad
I swear to God, if you yell at my precious, perfect offspring about missing a catch one more time, these bleachers full of despondent middle-class parents watching a t-ball game will resemble the stands during a hockey match. (In that I will probably be getting drunk in the middle of the day and become belligerent for no apparent reason.)
Plus, your kid sucks, all the other moms say so.
4. The ‘I Wish I’d Had a Boy’ Dad
There are days when my daughter is crying because I looked at her wrong and an inner voice whispers ‘this would not be happening if she were a boy.’ And then I realize how shitty that is. It’s also very untrue. I should know considering I used to work in child care, and let me tell you… little boys are no less sensitive. So buddy, saying to a group of other parents with your poor six-year-old daughter in earshot that you wish you’d had a boy… is not cool. Way to give her some fucked up sort of complex because she doesn’t have a dick like her daddy wanted her to.
Also, what exactly can’t you do with your daughter that you would do with your son? Maybe some self-reflection is in order here.
5. The ‘Boys Will Be Boys!’ Dad
No, just no. It’s not okay for your little hell beast to go around pulling, pinching, poking and hitting every other kid on the germ infested playground. And sorry, if your son pulls my daughter’s hair and pinches her repeatedly after she tells him to leave her alone… she is totally allowed to kick him in the nuts. I will high-five her afterward, I might even buy her ice-cream.
It is not a ‘phase.’ You’re raising your kid to be an asshole.
6. The ‘I’m A Single Parent, Cut Me a Break!’ Dad
I feel you, I seriously feel you. But this stopped being a valid excuse, okay? Single moms get the super shitty end of that no-one-feels-sorry-for-you-slut stick (trust me), and it’s time you toughened up and got your shit together. You can only show up to Family Fun Night with your kids in clothes that look like they were rolled in spaghetti, glue, and finger paint so many times before neglect becomes a serious concern. I mean I hate to it say it buddy, but masculinity is not an excuse for your daughter looking like she hasn’t had a bath in 6 months. And hey, I’d be happy to teach you how to braid her hair, you know?
7. The ‘I Just Really Need a Break from It All… Every Weekend’ Dad
You work hard man, I get it. Long hours maybe, a shitty boss and co-workers, I’ve been there, it blows. But I’ve also spent some time on the opposing side of this family-unit spectrum. I spent a few years as a stay at home mom and let me tell you, that shit is rough. And before the masses spring forth to scream in my face about the progression of feminism and how raising children isn’t difficult and doesn’t contribute to society (really?), let me say that the difficulty is rather more subtle than might meet the eye. When your entire existence revolves around a creature that seems set on acting like the worst kind of drunken frat boy — and who is more likely to throw food in your face than be sweet and adorable — your sanity can crumble quickly. Like, in the space of one Dora the Explorer episode.
So maybe the next time you’re getting ready to head out for your weekly poker night and your wife is in the kitchen with that glazed look in her eyes, some sort of globular mess on her shirt and in her hair, with a fussy child in her arms, you could consider letting her take a ‘break from it all.’
8. The ‘What Doesn’t Kill ‘em Will Make ‘em Stronger’ Dad
Hey, I’m all about not over protecting children. Never understood the idea behind doing everything for my daughter or protecting her from the entire world, but there is a fine line between letting them learn from their mistakes and allowing them to run out into traffic. You know? So when your kid is about to skydive off the swings physics rules out lofty ideals. I know many men cater to the idea of ‘toughening’ their kids up… but a broken arm might be pushing it. Also, I don’t know about your medical insurance, but broken bones ain’t cheap.
Just let them eat glue and cut their own hair like other well-adjusted, perfect parents.
9. The ‘Cooking and Cleaning is Woman’s Work’ Dad
Go on, deny that men like this still exist if you must, but you’re not fooling anyone. I spent waaaaay too much time amongst my very religious family members to believe that that mind frame went up in smoke along with a bunch of burning bras.
Taking the time to show your kids that you’re capable of doing house work and even making a complete meal every so often will probably do wonders for their worldview. Let’s push that gender envelop big guy, and show our daughters that dudes can do laundry just as good as their moms (in my cause… way better) and that your home-made tacos are actually pretty kick ass and you let them have soda sometimes so you’re totally cooler than mom. Showing your sons how to look after themselves later in life isn’t the worst idea ever, either.
10. The ‘Stay at Home’ Dad
Hey, could you stop letting your wives pursue their careers, stop understanding that maybe it makes more fiscal sense for the two of you for her to keep her job, and stop spitting in the supposed face of evolution and get back to the corporate ladder? You’re fucking up the system dude.