Leaning into Fatherhood with the Papa Perspective

Guest column from Andrew McFarlane, blogger and dad to two boys. 

When I first learned that I was going to be a father, it was one of the happiest days of my life. Little did I know at the time how much becoming a father would turn my life completely upside down, inside/out, and around in circles. Since you’re on this page, I would assume you have felt something similar. 

You see, fatherhood isn’t something that comes naturally to me. My wife was definitely lightyears ahead in parenting capability (especially since she had a degree in child development and teaching). So, what did I do? I started a blog to force myself to research how to be a better dad, learn basic child development, and share the hilarities that inevitably occur during fatherhood. 

Three things that have helped me lean into being the best dad for my kids include constant communication with my spouse, finding online parenting resources, and roughhousing with my boys.

 

1. Keep Constant Communication Open

If there has been one thing that I would say has been the best factor in my success as a father, it would be constant clear communication with my wife. Through a lot of tough conversations, we have built our relationship to a point where we can stop and give each other constructive criticisms on each other’s parenting. If there is something that happened throughout the day involving discipline that didn’t go well, we will chat in the evening how that person can improve. That way, our child doesn’t hear the discussion and that person will be able to know what to do next time so that the discipline will have a more positive effect in the future. 

At the end of the day, we discipline our kids because we love them and know their potential. 

Aside from this, we also constantly make an effort to praise one another or praise our kids when something goes right. Doing this has helped reinforce great behavior from our son and the best parenting skills from one another.