Its easy to be a good dad

In December last year, my wife gave birth to our first child. I could tell you what a wonderful rewarding experience it is (and it is), but I’m not going to.

Instead I want to talk about the joy of low expectations that society places upon you as a father. I never realised that being a “good dad” was so easy. Pushing a pram up the street I have beaming old ladies tell me how wonderful it is that men are involved with the children, and that their husband would never have been seen pushing a pram. Change a nappy at my grandparents place and I hear about how fantastic it is that I help out.

It’s not just my grandparent’s generation that have this attitude. It is also clear from those in my parents or even my some of my own generation that they regard a father willing to help out with the general child raising chores an exception rather than the rule. I’ve worked with very proud Dads who would always talk of what their multiple children were up to, but admitted to having changed around three nappies in their lives. Its not that they weren’t interested in their children, it was merely that they didn’t help with the less pleasant chores.

Of course I don’t do as much as my wife does with the baby, I work and she doesn’t now. Still when I’m home I try to take a fair share of the child care chores. I don’t consider this exceptional but obviously it is. So all I can say to the generations of lazy bastards out there is, thanks for making it so easy to look like a good dad.

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6 Responses to Its easy to be a good dad

  1. Rod says:

    I think this is feminist bullshyte Steve.

    How can you change nappies, cook clean etc etc if you’re a blacksmith with toxic stuff on your hands? or a pest controller? or a Gardener with dirt under your fingernails etc etc.

    Go and do a days hard work in the garden when your arms literally ache and your hands are hardened tools and then tell me your happy to change a nappy or give the baby a bottle when your shirts filthy?

    We are just lucky we work at clean desk jobs and can do this whole baby stuff

    Rod

    p.s. Those old ladies also smile and nod approvingly at backyard blitz – there just happy to see another workhorse keeping the world turning for them (x ref Thorstien Veblen)

  2. Steve says:

    I never claimed they should be doing the same work. Just being willing to be involved with their children when they are available rather than devolving all responsibility to their partner.

  3. Rod says:

    I think its the free market at work and people should be free to carry on their personal lives as they wish…

  4. Steve says:

    Well they are. I’m free to criticise them as well.

  5. Rod,

    How can you change nappies, cook clean etc etc if you are a nurse who is dealing with infectious diseases all day, or a cleaner who is dirty from cleaning buildings or day, or a nail salon person dealing with toxic chemicals all day?

    Perhaps those (largely female) workers get their husbands with the clean desk jobs to deal with the baby?

    Or perhaps have you heard of showers?

  6. Rod says:

    Thats fine – and I’m sure if you did a statistical analysis looking at the %’s of dads and mums of

    1) kids who need “hands on” care – ( feeding, changing, pramming etc)

    and

    2) had jobs where their hands were exposed to dangerous chemicals, germs, or general filth

    You would see a houshold division of labour particularly in respect of childcare which reflected this.

    Acedotally, most hands on “good dads” I know are white collar professionals without physically demanding jobs, most “bad dads” I know come home dirty and tired and sit on the back porch and crack open a tinny at the end of the day. Most Nurses I know (I dont know any cleaners) work odd shifts, come home buggered and their kids and partners are more self sufficient and do more cleaning , cooking and looking after things because they have too.

    Whose right? whose wrong? they all make the wheels of society turn.

    Why do leftists/ feminists, immediately leap to an ideological value judgement of what a “good dad” is when their clearly are sooo many other factors?

    Cant we just assume that people are adults and able to negotiate their household division of labour to their own satisfaction based on their own individual circumstances?

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