We cannot separate the Month of love from Men’s conference. I wish it were not just a social movement, but a real thing. Where fathers could gather and have heart-to-heart conversations with each other.
There are a lot of issues to be discussed about fatherhood, and I believe the message would be clear when it comes from a fellow father instead of a woman.
Fathers, we need you.
Seeing schoolmates brag about the gift their fathers bought for them used to bother me a lot. My heart would fume with anger whenever I saw a father dropping off one of their children at the gate. At times I would try to suppress the anger inside me because emotions can only take so much.
I just had to be strong and accepted my situation.
Did I mention that my father was present? No, I didn’t! He was present, alive, and we lived with him. Sadly he was not like any other fairytale father who takes his girls out for late-night supper. He was a typical African man who would be present in a child’s life, but absent emotionally. He was not actively involved in our lives.
He abused alcohol which made him act dreadfully towards everyone in the house. My mother could not bear the situation any longer as it would affect us negatively. She decided to move out with us and left my father behind. After we moved out of where we lived with my father, our lives changed for the better.
It was not easy because my mother now had full responsibility on her own for my siblings and me. We were more at peace than when we stayed with both of them.
Until I started maturing, I understood the importance of a father in a child’s life.
Fathers play a vital role in raising children. From my own experiences and discoveries, I realized the difference between children whose fathers are absent and those whose fathers are present.
Those with present fathers are generally respectful, gentle, understanding, and loving because of the discipline that they got from their fathers. And those without fathers tend to be angry, resentful, rebellious, and sometimes violent. The pain of not having a father is so much that they feel a sense of belonging amongst their peers and sometimes influence them to do vile things like substance abuse and gangsterism. I am a product of being raised by a single mother, and I turned out quite ‘well’ ( the struggle is real, hahaha). Not every child turns out bad, but the majority of them prove that they usually fall on the bad side of the law, and the behavior is not so pleasing.
The easiest way to solve some of the social issues we encounter in society is if fathers take responsibility for their children. We do not say they should get back together with their ‘baby mamas’, but to co-parent and work together as a team for the sake of their children.
The absence of my father made me strong and brave. I grew up knowing I had to look out for myself because no one would, besides me.
A father is someone who protects, loves, and nurtures. A father is a best friend to his children and the first love to his girl child. A girl child should experience fatherly love firstly from his father before she experiences any other type of love from any other man. Some men wish they were fathers, but they do not have. It looks like being a father is a privilege and a gift not given to everybody. Treasure it while there is still time.
And what are your experiences with absent fathers? How was your childhood growing up with/without a father?
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From my heart to yours