Mothers are hitting the corporate ramps and fathers are taking charge of the home. The world of parenting is definitely changing. It is no longer engulfed with stereotypical roles based on gender (Thank god!). Both parents have started sharing equal responsibilities when it comes to taking care of the child. But what about those who have no one to share their child’s responsibilities? We all must give a big shout out to all the single parents out there who are holding the fort all by themselves! All the single mothers and fathers are one man armies taking care of two different worlds – their own and then their child’s. This father’s day let’s see what being a single father looks like and let’s appreciate those single dads who are still going on strong.
What does it mean to be a single father in the 21st century?
Our fast-paced lives barely leave any time for ourselves. Imagine having the responsibility of another individual who is completely dependent on you and not having any help with that. The life of a single father pretty much looks like that. Here are a few stereotypes that single fathers are still exposed to:
Where is your mom?
Even in the world of single fathers, most people assume that dads will only suffice the materialistic needs. When it comes to honing a child with certain skills, the world believes that it’s not a father’s job. However, single dads always proven that this is far from the truth. From doing the pick and drop duty diligently to singing lullabies to their children, single dads can also become super mommies.
People assume there’s always a woman involved
‘Who did your plaits so well? How is your home so neat and tidy? I am sure you have a good nanny or I am sure you have some help from your grandmother.’ Gender stereotypes often underestimate how much a single dad is capable of. People with such stereotype often assume that if everything is perfect with the child, then the dad is definitely getting some help from a woman in his life. Whether it is helping with the perfect frozen princess dress or baking the perfect cookies, single dads have time and again shut all such stereotypes by being a superman in their child’s life.
Over appreciation, that may or may not be good
This is yet another flip side of society’s obsession with gender roles. Often single fathers are placed on a pedestal for doing everything that is assumed to be a woman’s job. However, all the appreciation might not be good for the child. The child will always keep thinking that his/her dad overcompensates for the lack of mother and may often look at everything that their father’s do out of love as a parental favour. Over appreciation also emphasizes on the fact that parenting is not a man’s job further drilling unfair gender roles. It is always good to emphasize that parenting duties are not limited to just mom and dad.
Let’s give the much deserved appreciation to single dads
Becoming a parent is the most beautiful feeling in the world. Though single dads should not be placed on a pedestal because of stereotypes they sure do deserve appreciation for carrying the responsibility all alone. After all, they are moulding an individual who will become a significant contributor to future society.
This Father’s Day, let’s appreciate all the single dads for their hard work and congratulate them for experiencing the beauty of parenthood. For they are definitely doing an awesome job by being a strict father when needed and being an easy-going friend when the time calls, all at once!
Komal Patil is a business management graduate finding purpose through words, writing stories and poems