Lowering the Bar: What Is a “Good Father” in Current Year?

It irks me when someone tells me “Oh, you’re such a good father!” when they see me out and about with my son. 

Do I have your attention? Good. 

I’m know I’m not the first to notice this. And I know I won’t be the last. 

Why does this bother me so?

Because all I do either in public or in private is the parent my son. 

That’s it. Really. 

  • I pay attention and interact with him, and not my phone. 
  • I try to bring him with me everywhere I can just so we can hang out and maybe learn something. 
  • I use situations as lessons when appropriate. 
  • I discipline him when necessary. 
  • I try not to leave it up to my wife to do everything. 

And most importantly:

  • I love the little bugger, and I love him fiercely. 

In 2017, apparently, a man being a parent is all it takes to be considered a good father. 

The bar had been set so low by forces outside of our control, everyone’s perception is completely screwed up.

I hung out at the pool with my son over the weekend, chilling with a guy who also lives in the building and his two kids that he obviously loves. 

Does spending time with our kids make us “good fathers,” or just fathers? 

Dad is supposed to be a moron, right? A big, usually fat slob who wouldn’t wipe his own arse without his sassy, long-suffering wife cracking the whip. And certainly unable to properly raise a kid. 

Indeed, dad is incapable. 

Or worse, dad is a potential abuser, molester, and even a killer in waiting
Blame TV, movies, feminists, marketing gurus, the government, and all of the other usual suspects for this cultural insanity that’s turned dad into both an idiot and the enemy. I really don’t care who holds the smoking gun. I care about the consequences. 

Dad is worthy of nothing but contempt. Even if reality doesn’t match. 

Yes, there are some idiot dads. And some downright bad ones. One such dad is too many. 

Yet a question no one on broader society asks is: are all mothers, by definition, good?

Our family law system even promotes this bias. 

It’s curious how fathers are one of the few groups exempt from the “But not all!” benefit of the doubt, isn’t it?

Single-motherhood is promoted as superior–I mean is dad even necessary, am I right?

Well-meaning entities and people do this as well. Your church, especially if you’re a mainline Protestant, probably talks about how women are naturally “closer to God” or whatever bullshit they say, and that they need to drag men kicking and screaming into the light. 

No wonder some fathers, and some men in general, are checking out. Even when they’re trying their best, they’re still considered idiots.

And yet, the “good father” appellation is supposed to make us feel all warm and fuzzy about ourselves. But what does it even mean?

Nothing. As commonly used, it means nothing. Like nearly everything else in this country, maybe even in this world, it’s been dumbed-down and bastardized to the point of irrelevancy. 

I’ve said it before, though, and it bears repeating here: Even though I love being a father, I also love going against the grain out of pure spite. Because screw the powers-that-be, that’s why. 

Here are some good fatherhood-based websites that won’t patronize you:

Follow me on Twitter @DaytimeRenegade and Gab.ai @DaytimeRenegade

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6 thoughts on “Lowering the Bar: What Is a “Good Father” in Current Year?

  1. You make some great points. It has always bothered me that fathers are defaulted as “bad” and mothers as “good”. Step into ANY parenting circle and you will see that these assumptions can be incorrect. Also, praising someone for being good or labeling someone as bad – what does this accomplish? I wish there was less lip service and more actual support in lifting up young families. Just think of how “good” we’d all be then 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The defaults that you mention are so ingrained I think that they will sadly be with us for a long time. And we’ve gone from “Father knows best” to “Are fathers even necessary?” so fast it makes one’s head spin.

      It’s not a “mothers versus fathers” thing. It’s about balance. And we’re way out of whack, which has caused huge social and personal problems.

      But like usual, the insulated classes who have brought us here are immune from the consequences of their own policies.

      Sorry Lauren. Just venting here. I can get pretty cranky sometimes, but if I can’t get ornery in my own comment section, then I don’t know what the proper place is anymore.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Alex. Interesting post which has got more relevant for me as I am going to be a father at the end of the year. One of my concerns in the past has been about the diminishing role of the Father, which as portrayed in the media either appears to be idiot or abusive. I questioned whether i would be a good father. Fortunately I have a wife who has built up my confidence in my potential abilities. I look forward to the role and definitely plan to take a more traditional role of being a hands on dad so that they get the best chance they can get in life.

    Liked by 1 person

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