Father’s Day always sparks nostalgic notions of paternalism and fatherhood without really addressing what Father’s Day is meant to be about.
I do not believe fatherhood is about one day of the year. Instead, it is a way of being, a lifestyle and a meaningful connection that has been eclipsed by marketing and superficiality. It is not about meeting up with your children, so they can give you expensive presents on that one day.
In my opinion, fatherhood is about leading through example. Being role models. Being a real man. Being a man has nothing to do with what you wear, or the gift you received on Father’s Day. It has nothing to do with what you like. It has everything to do with who you are.
Are you treating everyone with respect? Are you respecting yourself?
Are you willing to sacrifice your own ego and needs?
Can you share equally in responsibilities at work, at home, in your community?
Can you consider parenting a partnership rather than acting as an assistant?
Do you rate or rank women according to their attractiveness, or do you see their beauty and strength is more than superficial?
Do you assume responsibility for your and your male associates’ actions, instead of thinking that women’s attire or behaviour invites violence?
Do you call out other men who demean women?
Are you being honest with yourself?
Are you finding at least one person in the world with whom you can be vulnerable?
Are you committing to self-improvement?
Are you showing your children what being a real man is?
This is what we should celebrate every day and every Father’s Day.
Learn how to #bemorethanabystander and end gender-based violence at www.mentoraction.org
Opinion Submission by: Gustavo Rymberg, MentorAction Member