The Best Dad Ever

Deadbeat dads suck for many reasons, but the one aspect of abandonment that no one seems to discuss is the trickle down affect it has on the abandoned child's future. I was raised in a single parent household because my father was a coward who never even bothered to pick up the phone. Everything I've learned about life and how I should carry myself as a man I learned from my mother. How crazy is that?  I have 6 kids, but it's the relationship with my three boys, a thirteen year old and two nine year old's I am most conscious of.

Of course I'm motivated to be the best father I can be because of my past, but I am beyond self conscious when it comes to the smallest things. For instance, I wonder am I doing enough father and son things to qualify as the best dad ever.

All three of my boys play basketball as I did when I was kid. I attend all of their games and at half-time I give them advice on what they can do better for the second half. I wonder if I'm pushing them too hard or am I giving the right advice. My mom attended my games when she could but what advice could she give me? None. I learned the fundamentals of the game from guys at the local park who talked trash and didn't have a father at home themselves.

I realize each team has a coach, but to be the best dad ever I should be the one teaching them. I want them to grow up saying my dad showed me how to finger roll or dribble between my legs not their coach, but it's difficult when I have to feed them.

I work 2nd shift full-time and I'm a full-time student, so I wonder if I'm spending enough time with them because I know just "being there" doesn't qualify you as the best dad ever. I mean my dad is tied with zillions of other guys as the worst dads ever for not being there and according to the U.S. Census Bureau not much has changed. Twenty-four million children in America -- one out of three -- live in biological father-absent homes.
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My 13 year old is experiencing his first love and I admit I'm having anxiety attacks because when I experienced my first love I talked to my mom. She said I don't know what love is (which was accurate )
but it felt like love and to be the best dad ever I have to say the right things when we have these discussions. Chances are he will get his feelings hurt the same way I did after my first love or infatuation's mother told me not to call her again, but how do I come out and say, "Well son you're probably going to get hurt?" I have no idea. I think I'll let him enjoy the feeling and when the time comes I'll be looking forward to that conversation. I'm just hoping that afterwards, he thinks I'm the best dad ever.

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Filed under: Parenting

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