To all the fathers out there who are committed to be the best DAD they can be.
When I refer to fathers in my blogs, I also emphasize and stress the importance of being a “responsible, healthy and safe role model.” More and more fathers are asking me “how do I be a good dad?” My answer is simple, I tell them “be present your son needs you!”
Kids Don’t Come with a Manual
Most dads are “doing it like their dad did-or-just the opposite of their dad.” I believe, for the most part, all you dads are doing the best you can with what you know.
If you think back in time, before the Industrial Revolution, Dads were responsible to show (model) their sons what it takes to be a man. They worked tilling and planting the fields; they shoed the horses side by side, at the same time molding their young sons into men. They taught them the rite-of-passage to becoming a man; and they did it by just being present with their sons.
The Industrial Revolution changed all that. Dad was forced to leave the farms and close their shops. They went to work in mills, factories, and offices to survive and support their family. They put in long hours and didn’t get home in time to spend time with the kids.
Change is Inevitable
That change has continued generation after generation. Each time the next generation of dads gets further away from those early rite-of-passage teachings with their son. Sadly, that’s because they weren’t taught by their father.
Research tells us on average father and son spend about 10 minutes a week together. Divorce is common place. And who is suffering? Our boys. In fact, our boys are in trouble and if not rectified, the results will be devastating.
The Best Tip
So, what’s the magic bullet? There aren’t “5 easy steps” or “10 secret tips” there is only ONE and here it is:
Dad starting at age 11 (that’s the age your son innately turns to you to see the man he is likely to be like) schedule 3-5 hours “one-on-one time” a week with your son; keep this schedule until at least age 16! Even when you don’t feel like it and/or he doesn’t want to–DO IT ANYWAY!
I don’t need to tell you how I think the time should be spent, you know your son so just do it! The bottom line is you could be doing nothing, and he’ll get something he needs from you. Think back to when you were a kid, chances are your sweetest memories are the ones that you and your dad (grandpa, uncle or stepdad) were just being guys together.
I am working diligently on a new book devoted to dad and sons. It’s a great resource if you don’t know where to start so stay tuned!