No, really. You are always a dad.
It doesn’t matter if your children live with you one hundred percent of the time. Or half the time. Or none of the time. Or if you have `contact’ of one card per year.
You. Are. A. Dad.
We can play semantics here. We can do the whole `Any man can be a father but it take’s a real man to be a dad’ thing. But you’ve probably heard plenty of opinions that diminish your role, your worth and your suitability. You know if you are below par – and if you believe you are there is a fair chance you came to feel like that over time.
Father’s Day alone.
But the power is in your hands. You are a dad. You likely swore to do the best for your children on the day they were born and this situation doesn’t change anything does it? Does it? I mean…you probably didn’t imagine that would be the endless paperwork. The tongue-biting. The being told the kids have a new dad. Your children calling another man `Dad’ and you being called by your first name. Seeing their name changed. The hurtful comments made on paper and to your face. The empty nursery. The photos you’ve taken off the wall because you can’t bear to look at them. The being told you have no dependents’ because your children don’t live with you more than 50% of the time. The inevitable Well plenty of guys don’t bother’ or the rebuttal `there are plenty of useless fathers out there’ comments. The comments about how you should walk away and your kids will find you when they grow up if they want to see you. The pictures of happy dads and their kids on Facebook celebrating Father’s Day. The TV adverts about treating dad on his big dad. The happy, smiling families that you don’t have.
No one would ever forgive you for walking away. Or giving up. Or being hard bitten and cynical. But it starts and ends with you. No one can make you keep going. No one can make you give up.
The biggest thing to fear perhaps? Your children asking you many, many years time when all this is the dim distant past `What did you do to be my dad’.
Do everything you can and your conscience will be clear the rest of your life.
Happy Father’s Day whatever your situation.