Last year, when we inaugurated our Top 50 Dad Blogs list, we praised dad bloggers for “changing the way we think about fatherhood.” Indeed, a number of our favorite bloggers on this, our second Top 50 list, insist our thinking needs to be changed. They describe themselves as advocates for fathers, taking to their keyboards in order to counter dominant cultural stereotypes of dad-as-incompetent-buffoon. (You don’t believe them? Tune in to most any family sitcom on most any night of the week.) Others on the list aspire simply to entertain us with funny, relatable tales from the trenches. A few write to work through the shattering grief of losing a child or spouse.
This list features straight dads, gay dads, working dads, stay-at-home dads, geek dads, single dads, and more. In a culture where the dominant conversations around fatherhood center simply on whether dads can deign to change their kid's diaper, it's refreshing to see these guys take the public perception of parents into their own hands. We are again struck by the variety of their voices and experiences, which itself puts the lie to the notion of any one “typical dad.” A lot of our favorites from last year are back, while many worthy entrants are making their debuts. We hope you’ll enjoy laughing, crying, nodding, and discovering along with them as much as we have. As dads' online influence grows, this list will only become more and more difficult to curate — and that's a good problem to have. If you think we missed any of your favorite dad bloggers, nominate them here. – Barbara Spindel and the dad blog panel
20 / 50
Frederick, a.k.a. Mocha Dad, knows how to have fun. He takes his three kids camping, dances with them at “Dancey Dance Time,” and is currently planning a family trip to Disney World.
But his blog, which he started four years ago (and which came in at #19 on last year’s list), definitely has a serious side. He writes earnestly about his efforts to inculcate values like kindness and gratitude in his three children. For instance, he and his wife created a Thankful Box that sits in the kitchen. Family members write what they’re thankful for on slips of paper throughout the year, and they read the slips aloud on Thanksgiving.
More broadly, Frederick says he blogs “to counter the negative stereotypes regarding black fatherhood. I wanted people to get a first-hand account of a black father who is intimately involved in his children’s lives.” And more broadly still, he is an advocate for fathers of all races. “If you look at the way men (especially dads) are portrayed on TV,” he notes, “you’d think we were all a bunch of irresponsible, befuddled nincompoops, who can only function with the help of a ‘smart’ female partner, friend, or spouse. It is our duty as men, fathers, and responsible citizens to counter these negative images and raise a new generation of men who are respectful, loving, and willing to contribute to society in a positive way.” With this blog, he’s certainly doing his part.