Happy Father's Day

Today is the third Sunday of June - the American date to celebrate Father's Day which has also been taken up by many countries. It has been said that it was started by a lady who admired her father who brought her and her 5 siblings up singlehandedly. It was first celebrated in her hometown in 1910 before being celebrated nationwide. By the time RichardNixon became President in 1972, the Father's day holiday was officially recognised.

For most Bruneians, we have great difficulty expressing our love to our fathers. We do not seem to have the same difficulty with mothers. Perhaps the younger fathers may find it easier but the older the father, the harder it is for his children to express their love for him openly. Father figures are generally expected to be respected and to be obeyed. He isthe discplinarian in the family. He is also expected to be the breadwinner of the family,though that stereotyping is breaking down. Some children have also expressed their opinions that today's fathers have to do more than just expect their children's respects. I am not a family relationship expert, but I thought it might be helpful if I include the following 10 ways in how to be a better dad from http://www.fatherhood.org, their advice seems sounder than what I can ever give.

  1. Respect Your Children's Mother
    One of the best things a father can do for his children is to respect their mother. If you are married, keep your marriage strong and vital. If you're not married, it is still important to respect and support the mother of your children. A father and mother who respect each other, and let their children know it, provide a secure environment for them. When children see their parents respecting each other, they are more likely to feel that they are also accepted and respected.
  2. Spend Time with Your Children
    How a father spends his time tells his children what's important to him. If you always
    seem to busy for your children, they will feel neglected no matter what you say. Treasuring children often means sacrificing other things, but it is essential to spend time with your children. Kids grow up so quickly. Missed opportunities are forever lost.
  3. Earn the Right to Be Heard
    All too often the only time a father speaks to his children is when they have done something wrong. That's why so many children cringe when their mother says, "Your father wants to talk with you." Begin talking with your kids when they are very young so that difficult subjects will be easier to handle as they get older. Take time and listen to their ideas and problems.
  4. Discipline with Love
    All children need guidance and discipline, not as punishment, but to set reasonable limits. Remind your children of the consequences of their actions and provide meaningful rewards for desirable behavior. Fathers who discipline in a calm and fair manner show love for their children.
  5. Be a Role Model
    Fathers are role models to their kids whether they realize it or not. A girl who spends time with a loving father grows up knowing she deserves to be treated with respect by boys, and what to look for in a husband. Fathers can teach sons what is important in life by demonstrating honesty, humility and responsibility. "All the world's a stage..." and a father plays one of the most vital roles.
  6. Be a Teacher
    Too many fathers think teaching is something others do. But a father who teaches his children about right and wrong, and encourages them to do their best, will see his children make good choices. Involved fathers use everyday examples to help their children learn the basic lessons of life.
  7. Eat Together as a Family
    Sharing a meal together (breakfast, lunch or dinner) can be an important part of healthy family life. In addition to providing some structure in a busy day, it gives kids the chance to talk about what they are doing and want to do. It is also a good time for fathers to listen and give advice. Most importantly, it is a time for families to be together each day.
  8. Read to Your Children
    In a world where television often dominates the lives of children, it is important that fathers make the effort to read to their children. Children learn best by doing and reading, as well as seeing and hearing. Begin reading to your children when they are very young. When they are older encourage them to read on their own. Instilling your children with a love for reading is one of the best ways to ensure they will have a lifetime of personal and career growth.
  9. Show Affection
    Children need the security that comes from knowing they are wanted, accepted and loved by their family. Parents, especially fathers, need to feel both comfortable and willing to hug their children. Showing affection everyday is the best way to let your children know that you love them.
  10. Realize that a Father's Job Is Never Done
    Even after children are grown and ready to leave home, they will still look to their
    fathers for wisdom and advice. Whether it's continued schooling, a new job or a wedding,fathers continue to play an essential part in the lives of their children as they grow and,perhaps, marry and build their own families.

From National Fatherhood Fatherhood Initiative. "10 Ways to be a Better Dad" brochure.

Happy Father's Day!


Anonymous said…
Wishing all Fathers a very Happy Father's Day =)

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