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What Did My Fathers Teach Me?

dad What did my fathers teach me? Well, because they were human, they taught me both positive and negative things. It pays to break down what they taught me. Of course, my fifteen years of fathering imparts a few lessons, as well. Here are the lessons, positive and negative mingled:

From my biological father – if you have lost your children, for any reason, don’t give up looking for them until you find them. Be ready to respect their differences of opinion – especially if you are very opinionated yourself and/or are from a family of strongly opinionated people.

From my stepfather – you are responsible for your child’s life. Be there for them as much as you can, when they need you to be their friend, when they need you to be on the job day after day after year after year, and be there for the child’s mother…you lose your children’s hearts if you lose the mother’s heart.

Give more praise than criticism. Give more love when you have spoken sharply. Let them know how much you care for them, especially when you are irritated or dismayed by what they are doing or have done. Allow them the luxury of knowing why some things cause you concern, to be angry, indignant, fearful for their lives, or shocked. Just let them know these things along with the truths of how much you love them and care about them.

Have fun with your children. I have very fond memories of rising into the air, viewing the landscape below as a four-year-old being tossed up in the air over a large swimming pool by my stepfather. I could never get enough. No wonder my younger sons have begged to be tossed over and over again. Good thing they have that memory – I’m now allergic to swimming pool chlorine.

It’s coupling the love with the concerns, and expressing both that leave your children with the lessons they need to know, and the security to feel valuable enough to apply the lessons to themselves. As you give these things to your children, you’ll have the tools you need to get and stay close with them, because you never stop being a father, once you’ve started.

Related Blogs:

Who’s Your Daddy?

Where I Came From

My Next Chapter