Letting Dads be Dads – Even When it is Terrifying (Part 2)

Letting Dads be Dads – Even When it is Terrifying (Part 2) June 22, 2023

In honor of Father’s Day, this two-part blog is a follow up to an earlier series sharing recent research on what every new dad can do to be a competent and confident father. In this series, we shared new research (in last week’s Part 1) on how moms can encourage dads at any stage of parenting. In Part 2, we share encouragement for all the dads out there!

“Are the kids okay?”

Yes, I will confess that I have asked my husband this question a lot. When our kids were little, and I was away speaking at a women’s conference, I would often check in like that. Are the kids okay? Did they do their homework? Did they get to bed? Even years later, with college-age kids, I have been known to text Jeff something similar when one of them was home for the weekend. Everyone okay at home? Did Luke remember his meds?

It wasn’t until I saw one dad’s hilarious response to the “are the kids okay?” question that I began to realize three things:

a.  I may think I’m asking for an update (“science project turned in and meds taken”), but what I’m actually  asking   for is reassurance (“no, honey, I didn’t forget the science project”).

b.  I’m not the only mom who regularly looks for that reassurance. And …

c. If we think about it, our need for reassurance might end up being a teensy bit insulting to our man (See Part 1             for more on that.)

One of the funniest things I’ve ever seen online is a perfect homage to Father’s Day and all the long-suffering dads out there who smile and answer “yes, dear” instead of what I’m sure some of them are thinking. “Well, I forgot the kids were playing outside unsupervised all day while I was gaming, but because you asked I went looking and found them before they crossed the highway.”

This creative Belgian guy named Kenny Deuss came up with a completely different way of answering. Whenever his wife would send him an “are the kids okay?” text, he would send her back a Photoshopped picture in response.

Take a look at these images. I have not laughed so hard in a really long time. (Admittedly, a couple are off-color ­– curse words and candles, no thank you – but remember, they’re Photoshopped! Presumably, no infants were harmed in the computer-generation of these images.) This dad did a brilliant job of responding with humor.

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