Fatherhood – Have You Embraced It?

Have you truly given your all to embrace the concept and process of fatherhood? This is an important question to ask because many of the men in the United States today grew up with fathers who played a significantly different role in their homes and in their lives than fathers are expected to play today. For the most part, the fathers of the past spent their lives working hard to earn money and provide food on the table and roofs on the heads of their families. Unfortunately, these years of effort often came at the expense of not being able to spend nearly as much time with their families as they would have preferred. For many fathers and many families not too long ago, sacrificing a lifetime of time for a lifetime of money was one of the only ways to make a family work.

When you talk to men who grew up from families that were like this with fathers who weren’t often home, these men tend to have slight regrets about the way things were when they talk about their past. These are hard working men who pay the bills and support their loved ones in the same ways their fathers did, yet they still grieve about the lost decades when they never got the chance to truly know their fathers due to work obligations. It is important to learn from their experiences and pay attention to the areas they would change if they could; most often these areas involve their stunted relationships with their fathers. Within their regrets it is possible to learn how to make things different with your children, spouse, and family when you become a father.

It is odd to think about, but the recent difficulties in the national economy have actually made a great number of fathers to reexamine their concepts of fatherhood. Job losses and reductions in hours have forced a great number of men to spend more time with their children and families than they otherwise would, which has led to these fathers becoming thankful for the opportunity to spend more time with their partners and children. Many of these men will tell you a similar story: they talk of starting their careers and becoming consumed with work and office politics, with chasing the endless prizes of work bonuses and promotions and ever higher salaries and ever higher hours at the office. They talk about chasing all of the things their fathers chased that caused their fathers to miss so many years of their lives. However, in the current economy, many of these men who used to chase profits at the expense of time have reconsidered their lives and realized that the time they spend with their families is worth far more than any salaries they could possibly earn. In fact, even after recovering their jobs and hours, more fathers than ever are deciding to take a closer look at their careers in order to recover some of the work life balance that has been ignored in the United States for far too long. The meaning of fatherhood has changed dramatically for an entire generation of fathers who are making the decision to connect with their families on deeper and more substantive levels than ever before.

It is fair to say that fatherhood might turn into the new motherhood. More stay at home Dads exist than ever before due to the job losses and trials of today’s economy. When more families than ever are having to choose jobs that pay less money for the same number of hours, some decide that the expenses of daycare are not nearly worth the effort of working, which has led fathers who have lost their jobs to embrace full time fatherhood and stay home with the children so Moms can keep on bringing in paychecks to help pay the bills. Fatherhood is making a comeback.