Thursday, December 10, 2009

Fatherhood Friday: from Bloghungry, what do you want us to know?

This week, and this past month have been stressful for sure. I won’t lie, I am phoning this one in as I don’t have the time or energy to sit down and compose a big, brand new blog entry. Once next week is done, and the winter break begins, I can start focusing on some of the ideas that have been running around in my head but haven’t made it to the computer. This was posted a few weeks back by Adam at Bloghungry. We’re both new parents this year (me, again, him for the first time with his partner) and he had these pearls of wisdom to share. I asked if I could repost and he kindly obliged.

Since I entered fatherhood I have gone back to work two 6 hour days a week. That means that the other 156 hours a week are usually spent caring for an infant. This time has become an intense balance of cuteness and exhaustion that no one can ever understand that has not centered their life around it. That said, there are a few things I need to send out into the universe to help the world become a better place for new dads:

1. Do not offer criticism thinly veiled as advice to complete strangers on how to care for their children. Several times a day strangers offer me their two cents, as if to say "you're doing it wrong" about everything from the color of baby clothes to the suggestion of old world baby remedies. Combined with the stacks of baby books, internet articles, and dueling grandparent advice, it's enough to drive an already insane person postal.

2. If you see an overburdened parent carrying a diaper bag, shopping bags, and a baby take a second to hold the door for them or try to give them room to enter or exit the building.

3. Do not assume you have the right to cut in line or expect any special treatment from a sleep deprived dad with a screaming infant because you are a woman that believes in "chivalry".

4. When making plans to meet with a new parent you must be on time. Nap times, bed times, feeding schedules, and daily errands are often tightly scheduled and if missed can end in tears for all parties.

Great stuff Adam! What would you add to the list? I would like to add the people who give disapproving looks at us when we’re at restaurants and Eli makes a loud noise. We are always very careful to make sure we are out the door by 6 at the latest and we tend to go to family oriented places so we’re not messing up someone’s date night.

What are your thoughts?

Comment away.