As long as you are there for your kids, spending time with your kids, and letting them know that you are there for them no matter what – you are a good dad. I don’t think any man goes into fatherhood without doubts about whether or not they are going to be “good” at their job. But Dads, let me tell you, if someone hasn’t already – you are doing fine!
There is no instruction manual for how to be a good dad. You can read the books and glean lessons from them, but you have to put dad-ism into action. It is all about what you do, today. And listen, for your kids, it probably doesn’t even matter WHAT you do, as long as you are enjoying time with them. It could be something as stepping into the kitchen and making a meal together. Pack up a bag and head out on a hike or a short road trip. There are thousands of age appropriate things that can be done with your kids to soak up that quality time.
I think we can all take a little advice from Po the protagonist and his father. They have a special relationship, and with the love and support of his father, Po is able to overcome some unique challenges.
Eighty-six percent of dads spend more time with their children today than their own fathers did with them, but a majority of dads (7 out of 10) also reported that they could use tips on how to be a better parent, according to a national survey conducted by the Ad Council. Children with involved, loving fathers are significantly more likely to do well in school, have healthy self-esteem, exhibit empathy and pro-social behavior, and avoid high-risk behaviors such as drug use, truancy, and criminal activity compared to children who have uninvolved fathers.
Need some ideas? Here are a few to get you started:
- Make breakfast, lunch or dinner together.
- Go on a hike.
- Collect props from around the house and take pictures of each other.
- Plan a picnic, even indoors if it is cold.
- Plan a short road trip.
- Create a story together and make a book.
Get creative! The options are truly limitless.
In an effort to inspire and support men in their commitment to responsible fatherhood, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Family Assistance’s National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse (NRFC) and the Ad Council are asking us to share a message to dads everywhere: Take Time To Be A Dad Today! Visit the Ad Council or Fatherhood.gov for more resources on what you can do to make your time with your kids count!