Have Your Say
JAM | Jun 18, 2023

A letter to fathers who may feel inadequate

Candice Stewart

Candice Stewart / Our Today

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Dear fathers,

The celebration of fatherhood is not limited to pregnancy announcements and the birth of your children.

Today, the 18th day of June, is observed and celebrated by many as Fathers’ Day. However, between society’s failure to celebrate you often and your general inclination to decline being celebrated, you may feel stuck in a space of inadequacy.

That space is often perpetuated as, though we live in a man’s world, our households are predominantly headed by women. We also exist in a reality dictating that men are not as deserving as mothers to be acknowledged and openly appreciated.

The purpose of today is to honour fathers and father figures for their love, support, and guidance. It is a day to celebrate the important role that you play in your children’s lives.

If you are among the men who show up for your children, who love and support your children, who play a pivotal role in the development of your children, please accept the flowers that you are so worthy of.

Remember that there are some lessons that mothers just won’t be able to effectively teach. That is where you come in. You may not be earning as much as your partner and that’s okay. There are other ways in which you can steady and strengthen your family. Identify those unique traits and acknowledge that they make up your strong suit.

There may not be as many commercialised product sales or events to celebrate you as a dad but that does not measure your worth as a father.

You are not inadequate. You are worthy of celebration.

Ways to solidify your fatherly presence

If you’re looking for opportunities to solidify your presence as a father or father figure, you can make a conscious effort to schedule quality time with your children in ways that are suitable for your family’s unique nature. Consider volunteering to become a mentor for children who, for whatever reason, are without their biological father.

Another critical thing you can consider is to release the grips of ego and acknowledge that there is nothing wrong if you earn less than your partner does. If you do earn more than your partner, make a conscious effort not to make them feel inadequate.

You may even be a stay-at-home father. Nothing is wrong with that. You can still be an effective father who takes care of most things on the home-front while demonstrating your love and desire to see them excel.

Along with your partner, facilitate an environment where love is at the forefront of all you do. Children thrive off actions. So, show them and tell them.

If you think your feelings of inadequacy are relevant because you may not be the present and standup father that you want to be or ought to be, it is never too late to adjust that storyline.

Welcome continuous and consistent celebrations of fatherhood and encourage them. Doing that may trigger how the world we live in focuses on fatherhood.

Lastly, I offer apologies to you for sometimes being among those who don’t celebrate you enough.

Happy Fathers Day.

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