About Dads redefining their roles, and ‘babysitter’ isn’t one of them.
Why do I care?
Fathers have long been lumped into a ‘babysitter’ or ‘daddy daycare’ role since moms were the go-to as the primary care provider in years past. But times, they are a changin’ and it’s important that the conversations around their roles do as well.
Tell me more.
Over 2 million dads are now staying home as the primary caregivers of their children – but that isn’t their only reason for their ‘we’re not babysitting’ stance. Dads are more involved than ever and they (and their spouses) want everyone to acknowledge their evolving roles. One dad, has been in the media discussing a common feeling when strangers or otherwise will assume daddy is ‘daycare’, “What gets me about this type of thinking is that, in an instant, it both negates the depth of my parental relationship by complimenting me for having one at all, and then belittles that relationship by implying I’m a stand-in for the real parent: mom.”
Major props to all the dads managing buns and braids each morning before school, packing lunches, holding down the sports teams, folding laundry, and jumping into the night time snuggles right along side mom or on their own. We know it’s more than just an intermittent role and we applaud you for that.
On a lighter note – did you see Life of Dad’s #CheerioChallenge? Our favorite dad sightings on social media of the week. Hands down.
That’s What He Said
Is moving bad for your kid? A new study seems to think so.
The conclusion to a recent study of each and every person born in Denmark from 1971 to 1997 (we kid you not), determined that moving throughout adolescence, more specifically, could have detrimental long term affects on their well-being. The study focused on how the incidence of certain negative behaviors changed based on the number of moves in a person’s childhood. Behaviors like suicide attempts, drug use, criminal behavior and psychiatric disorders were all included in the study. All of these behaviors had an uptick in their incidence when moving occurred in a child’s life.
According to the Washington Post’s review of the data, “…the group of youngsters most likely to feel the ill effects of moving are kids in early adolescence, between 12 and 14. A child who goes through a residential move at age 14 has double the risk of suicide by middle age. Her risks of engaging in violent crime of abusing drugs more than double. And these risk ratios hold true even after controlling for parents’ income and psychiatric history.”
Some things that didn’t factor into the moves included reasons behind the moves, if there were other stressors behind the move and how that might impact the end result. The author of the Washington Post piece also points out that moves are sometimes in the best interest of the family and children due to neighborhood, financial, and/or other family factors – so keeping this study’s information in perspective is important.
So, what if you have to move? Military families are required to move, for example, every 2-3 years on average. There are other trades and jobs that also require relocation, so how do we help our kids? Below are some resources we found to help you along if a move is on the horizon:
- Military OneSource has a fantastic page of resources which offers solid information for any family about to embark on a move.
- Kids Health has a great piece on the topic of teens and moving
- Psych Central offers up food for thought on the moving mid-year topic.
How can you afford summer on a budget? It’s not an easy feat for many parents. Based on details featured in a recent NY Times article it is apparent that the childcare crisis reaches it’s peak in the summer months – which makes sense. When the bulk of the United States takes over two months off from school, it leaves parents on tight budgets with full work schedules scrambling for ways to account for their child’s summer care in an affordable way. Some strategies parents use include:
- Utilizing the local YMCA programs. They are often the more affordable option for day camps.
- Trading favors with family and friends. The barter system can go a long way if you have a ‘village’ of friends and family to trade favors with throughout the summer.
- A college kid can be a great option for your multi-kid family summer care plan – it’s often less expensive than paying individual camp and/or daycare fees for each child.
Parting Thought for the Day
To the moms who feel like they have forgotten themselves, we feel you and we’re loving this piece at Finding Joy that jumps into the trenches with us and says what we have found ourselves feeling at times. She says, “That’s the nature sometimes of this life. We live in a perpetual state of busy and we forget to fight for ourselves. We’ll fight for everyone else out there – our kids and spouses and friends and significant others and causes that we believe in – but somewhere in the journey it’s easy to forget to stand up and fight for us.”
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