My husband is a great father. When he gets down on the floor and gives our two children his undivided attention it's obvious that his babies have his heart. I'm not the only one who notices my husband's parenting prowess, either. People constantly make comments about his involvement and how my son must be a "daddy's boy" and how "lucky" I am. But let's be real, there are so many things people worship dads of sons for that moms do every single day and without the constant praise or fanfare.
My soon-to-be 7-year-old son and I have been inseparable since he was born. I had two miscarriages prior to my pregnancy with him, so to say that I was thrilled to have him in the world and hold him in my arms would be an extreme understatement. Having my son was one of the best days of my life. I give my son, just like my daughter, absolutely everything I have. And yet my daily sacrifices and dedication to my children often go completely unnoticed. It's expected of me because, well, I'm a mom.
I can't say the same about my husband, though. If he shows even an ounce of dedication to his children he is thrown a proverbial parade. Why? Because our culture doesn't expect him to be involved the way I am expected to. I'm the default parent, so any extra parenting my husband does is considered to be exceptional and "lucky" and worthy of praise. As you've probably guessed, I've had enough of it. So with that in mind, here are a few things dads with sons are constantly praised for that us moms with sons do all day, ever day, without so much as a simple acknowledgement:
When Dads Help With Homework
Every single day I help both of my kids with all of their homework and no one says a damn thing about it. Yes, my husband works a lot and when he comes home he's tired, but here's some news: I'm tired, too. I'm a work-from-home mom who is busy juggling my career responsibilities, parenting responsibilities, and house responsibilities. Helping our children succeed in school is literally part of our jobs as parents, so it shouldn't be considered this "monumental" thing just because my husband works outside the home. It's the bare minimum, my friends.
When Dads Play With Their Sons
My son is so imaginative and loves to sit on the floor and play with his legos for hours on end. So you can bet your you-know-what that I take time out of my day to get down on the floor and play with him. But when my husband does the same thing he's applauded as some "unbelievably great father" and showered with praise. People, he's playing with his kid. Like he should be. This shouldn't be some groundbreaking revelation.
When Dads Show Their Sons How To Cook
I cook almost every single meal my family eats, and my kids frequently help out in the kitchen. So it's rare for my husband to spend time in the kitchen cooking, but oh man when he does you'd think he's some kind of celebrity chef. People applaud my husband for "making meals with his son" and fostering "great memories with his child." Um, hello? Hi. It's me. The one who almost always cooks.
When Dads Teach Their Sons To Be Respectful Of Women
This is the bare minimum, people. This is on par with teaching your children to be nice to people because they're people. Hello: women are people. You're not this other-worldly father for telling your son to listen to women or respect women. You're just a dad doing exactly what he should be doing.
When Dads Show Their Sons Physical Affection
Moms and dads should hug their children. Period. It shouldn't be a big deal for a father to love on his son or tell his son he loves him. Dads should shower their boys with love, and when they do we shouldn't make a big deal about it.
When They Show Up At Their Sons' Events
I'm at every sporting event, every play date, and happy to volunteer every single time my son's teacher needs a class mom. I also work from home, keep my house clean, and make sure my family is fed. But my husband shows up to one after-school program thing and, because he's a working dad, he's a hero? Come on, now.
When Dads Talk To Their Sons About Their Feelings
Helping your kids acknowledge their feelings and work through their big emotions is part of being a parent. As an adult, my husband is more than equipped to do just that and in a way that benefits my son. I'm not the "best person" to talk to my son about his feelings simply because I'm a mom and a woman. My husband is capable because he's a human being with human emotions and I refuse to constantly praise him for identifying a feeling or teaching my son how to do the same.