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Dads Are Men, Not Idiots

Image Source: Thinkstock
Image Source: Thinkstock

Last week I headed off to a conference for some inspiration, education, and yes, I’ll admit, a little time away. Even though my trip had been planned for the better part of a year, I never put much thought into leaving. I didn’t strategize my outfits, perfect my elevator pitch, or even make sure I had enough business cards, because life, as it so often does, got in the way. There were deadlines to meet, dinosaur dioramas to dioram, and suitcases to borrow.

In the days leading up to my departure, friends and acquaintances all asked the same questions:

Are you nervous about leaving your kids home with your husband?

Is your husband freaked out that you’re leaving?

Did you make a bunch of meals for the days you’ll be gone?

Did you leave a detailed schedule for your husband?

Let’s see … no, no, no, and no.

WHAT?! Aren’t you worried your husband will forget to pick up the kids/miss practice/forget homework/feed the kids crap?

Let’s see … no, no, no, and no.

The thing is, I knew everyone would be fine. If I was worried about anything, it was that they’d be a little too fine without me.

The Wednesday of my departure, I said my goodbyes without a second thought to pick up times, school lunches, or orthodontist appointments. I trusted my husband to view the family calendar, my kids to communicate their needs, and above all, my almighty phone to ring should something, anything, everything go horribly wrong.

But apparently faith in a father holding down the fort was limited. Folks far and wide were calling, texting, and Facebook messaging my husband to make sure he was surviving. Really, people?

My husband’s a man, not an idiot.

He’s the father of these kids. He knows to give a daily multivitamin, audit a supposed tooth brushing, and keep cheese far, far away from any meal he hoped his kids to consume. He’d “survive” just fine.

And survival while dad-ing is apparently the stuff of legends, or so I was told incredulously.

You’re so lucky your husband is willing to do all that while you’re away!

He did LAUNDRY? What a good man!

He is a good man, a really good man. But not because he tackled a few loads of laundry. He’s a good man because he’s always a good man, taking care of whatever needs doing for his family — whether I’m home or away.

To be honest, I found all the well-intentioned concern confusing. My husband traveled halfway around the world for a couple of weeks and I didn’t receive a fraction of the interest or accolades.

Maybe managing dual pickups or packing lunches aren’t part of his daily to-do, but that doesn’t mean that they can’t be. If parenting in a marriage is indeed a partnership, let’s stop going ga-ga over da-da.

Dads, I love y’all, but I’m not falling all over myself because you acted like a parent. You’re capable. You’re intelligent. You’re great at it. And you do it all the damn time.

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Article Posted 5 years Ago

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