There is always so much written and said about mothers, the love of a mother and the difficulties mothers have to endure. I sometimes feel that the poor dads do not get enough recognition, and many do not recognize what fathers go through too.

It is said that a woman becomes a mother when she sees a positive pregnancy test, but a man becomes a father in the delivery room. However, what leads up to the delivery is also no easy task for many a man, as he has to deal with the emotions and hormonal fluctuations of his partner and he himself, is often going through many emotions, related to the pending birth and also the huge changes about to take place in his life.

When asked what fatherhood is, some great dads, said the following according to

Marc Ecko founder of Ecko Unlimited says, “It is EVERYTHING. It is the practice of LOVE. L.O.V.E. If the word was an acronym, it would stand for “Life’s Only Valid Expression”. It is the hardest job, but also the most gratifying job. It has special depth if you are patient and invest in the meaning of the relationship with the mother and your children. That makes it especially good. It is a layered and rich experience.”

As parents, we all make mistakes, and fathers often feel left out as many mothers spend much more time with their children. However, Dads are more often than not, the superheroes, the fun ones, and the ones that the children turn to when “mom is being unfair”. At times like these, Dad and Mom need to be a united front and support one another, even if one plays “good cop” and the other “bad cop”. As long as the children see that one cannot be played off against the other, the end result will be a very good one indeed.

We all know that raising children in a two-parent household is tough, but raising a child or children alone is another ballgame altogether. Single-parent families are becoming increasingly common these days, and for the purpose of this article, let’s look at single dads, even though most information and research on single parenthood that exists is based on single moms and despite being a growing population, single fathers are largely understudied. Imagine the poor dad going to a restaurant with his little one and needing to change a nappy, only to realize that there are only changing facilities in the ladies bathrooms. Why are dads not taken into consideration? I think that society is to blame for this and other inequalities with regard to single dads and moms, according to Dr. Collins, “men tend to receive praise in the public spheres when caring for their children in a grocery store or at the park, as it is seen as going above and beyond typical expectations for fathers” but “women in the same scenario are just seen as “doing their job” in the eyes of society in general”. It is time to change these antiquated perceptions and praise the little boy or young man that says, “I want to be a dad” when asked what he wants to be when he is grown up.

During the month of June, many dads will be celebrating with their offspring and being hailed as great dads this coming Father’s Day. Most are trying to be the BEST father and may at times ask, “what can I do to be a better dad?”. So, for those dads, a few tips below, which may be of assistance:

  • Put your phone away when you are with your children. Be present and let work wait until the kids are in bed or busy with homework. Time spent with children is an investment in your long-term relationship with them and they will remember that they were more important than the rugby match on TV, that email that had to go out, or that visit to the pub with friends. Rather than switching on the TV to distract the kiddies, read them a bedtime story and enjoy the closeness of the moment.

  • Set a good example for your children. It is one thing to tell your children to do as you say and then you yourself, do the opposite. Children copy their parents so dads should avoid using bad language around the kiddies. Always be courteous and show empathy for others. Dads need to treat women with respect so that this becomes the norm for all sons. Our country has a history of gender-based violence and we need to break the cycle now! This starts at home and Dads can be the catalysts to this much-needed change.

  • Do not overshare with your children. Adult problems should remain adult problems and should never be shared with children. We all have problems, but the children do not need to know about work or spouse issues as this will make them feel anxious and insecure. They cannot give advice, should NOT be expected to take sides, and should just be allowed to remain children for as long as possible.

  • Do not have unfair expectations for your children. It is not unfair to expect your children to be responsible for their homework and to try their very best at school, respect others, do their chores, and help around the house. We all want our children to grow into well-adjusted and happy, functioning adults, able to succeed in life. However, be careful NOT to push them into something YOU want them to be and have unrealistic expectations. Not all kiddies will be brilliant rugby players or ballet dancers. Math is complicated for some and for others very easy. Children need to know that they are accepted and LOVED no matter what they achieve, or do not achieve. Rather encourage and show interest in what they are doing and give advice rather than judge them. Respect should be shown to them, and they will pick up if you harbor resentment toward them for not living your dreams. Your dreams should never be expected to be their future.

  • Be patient with your children. You were once a child too and tantrums are nothing new. Try to lower your voice, if angry and explain to your children why you are not happy with their behavior. As the teenage years arrive, your patience will be tested to the fullest and these times are the breeding grounds for major issues should your relationship already be a bit rocky. However, if they view their dad as a rational, patient & loving man, they will hopefully be able to navigate through the difficult years without too many speed bumps. Having a dad who is always available, honest, fair, non-judgmental, and willing to listen is the recipe for a successful relationship with any teenager.

Being a father is a long journey and it is one that we pass on to our kids as they themselves become parents. Being a good dad requires a lot of self-discipline, personal growth, and inner reflection. You will never regret the effort you have put into this relationship, as you will surely reap the rewards as you watch them grow into successful loving adults one day. Do not be hard on yourself, as we all make mistakes, and as long as you are trying your best, your kids will see this and appreciate all that you do and have already done for them.

All dads deserve to be appreciated! How about one of these to show appreciation to ALL dads, clients, employees, or anyone who you think deserves a Dad Spoil.

  • Branded Caps or jackets

  • On the Road Gifts, for those Dads who travel

  • Techno items

  • Drinkware to make sure he is always hydrated, with a warm drink in Winter, or a chilled drink whilst exercising.

  • All Dads love tools and torches.

  • Notebooks and Pen sets are always appreciated.

  • Dad hampers filled with some tasty treats like biltong, nuts, chocolate, and some braai goodies.

Contact us should you need assistance with Fathers’ Day gifting or any other branded corporate gift queries you may have.

Thank you for your time and please visit our website for more ideas and information.

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