Single fathers often get a bad rap. We hear a whole lot of dead beat dad stories, but we often forget to recognize the superhero dads who are doing it all by themselves. There are plenty of dads who are the only parent for their children. They have to figure out how to be both mom and dad. Somedays this involves learning how to do a ponytail, figure out mascara, and discuss that time of the month.
Other days it can mean a day of nerf wars and football. Father figures and fathers are a key asset to a child. We can't take them for granted. We should give them credit when credit is due. They teach their sons to be good, strong men. They teach their daughters to be strong and brave. Fathers also set the precedent for how a woman should be treated and how men should treat women.
We sadly live in a culture where the single dad is often made out to be the bad guy, he's the one usually responsible for the divorce, not making time for the children, dragging nastiness into the court, and into society. Maybe it's a numbers game. It's an assumption most times.
We cannot possibly know every family or couple's situation and dynamic. These fathers put their children first. They realize the importance of a healthy dynamic and communication.
Some even go as far as to recognize the women who they created a family with. Despite a divorce, they were once in love. They are still family. Children bind two people together for life. Raising a child is a lot more than just one night or eighteen years. It's a lifetime commitment to that child and to the other parent.
12 "I Want To Be Seen As A Father"
One dad’s perspective on parenting is being open and honest, while age appropriate, with his children. As a single dad, he had to tackle the difficult and challenging obstacle of dating while being a single dad. That can cause confusion. Many people worry about, obviously, how the kids are going to be impacted.
This dad had a much less traditional take on dating while divorced because he keeps his children involved in his dating process.
On his blog he discusses that in order to fall in love with someone, he wants to see how she interacts with children especially his own. He also found it important for her to see him as a father because that’s a HUGE part of who he is as a man. In a way this is actually a benefit of dating a single parent or dating as a single parent.
When we have children our relationship has to change and adapt midway. This way we'll get to see if our future or potential partner would make for a good parent.
11 "I'm Still A Supportive Partner To My Ex"
One single mom posted a Facebook “rant” sharing the love with her ex who she successfully coparents with. Instead of going to court or having state ordered child support, they simply communicate. If she calls, he answers and he helps. He helps with whatever their son may need.
He will drop things off so she doesn’t have to bundle up the baby and take him out for one thing from the store. He understands the hassle that can be for a single mom.
He is also flexible with the scheduling of their son because he knows mom needs to take care of herself too. To care about their child is one thing, but to care about his child’s mother is a whole extra step. He listen to his son’s mom vent and cry about her stress and troubles because he’s there for her too. She is the mother of his child, and that’s a job that requires a whole lot of respect.
This dad isn’t threatened by mom’s new man and goes as far to remind his child to include him in his favorite people. He is setting a good example for his son when it comes to respecting adults and other people in general. He wants to create a good foundation for his son by showing him how a man, husband, and father should act.
10 "I Handle Tough Questions With Art"
As parents we all dread the "where do babies come from" question that we know we will be caught off guard answering and completely blunder. One single dad, Vicente, displays his love for his daughter through illustrations. This French father perfectly portrays the special bond there is between a father and his daughter.
His illustrations cover everything from how connected the two are to the fear a man encounters when trying to do a ponytail. That is something they should over a class in for single dads! When his daughter asks him how she was born he draws her saying, "Daddy, how was I born? Did you draw me?" Boy doesn't that sound like a much nicer way to tackle the baby question.
While Vincente's work has been an inspiration and motivation to lots of single dads everywhere, his most important audience is his daughter. He hopes that someday she will be able to see his drawings and realize how much she means to him. It's likely she already knows though!
9 "I Learned How To Braid Hair And Paint Nails"
One dad who has been a single father to his ten month old for nine months wrote an inspirational letter about raising a little girl by himself that is taking the internet by storm. Raising a child is hard. Raising a child alone is exhausting, hard-work, but it's worth it in every single way.
We are our own worst critics and that definitely applies to parenting as well. Thankfully, this dad had a whole lot of support poured upon him when he shared his letter with the world that reminded him, he's doing ok. In fact, he's doing more than ok.
The road of parenting is certainly quite bumpy. It gets difficult and feels exhausting, but we are reminded every single day that it's worth it and to keep going. Our parenting books are great, but no matter how many we read we won't ever feel "ready." In addition to parenting books, this dad knew raising a little girl would take some serious work.
He even learned how to braid hair and paint nails so that he could play both parents, and she wouldn't ever feel like she was lacking a parent or missing out.
8 "It's Not Easy"
Being a parent is hard work, but adjusting to being a single parent makes it all the more challenging. The adjustment to single parenthood is quite the change. Men aren't natural caregivers or so society would lead us to perceive. They don't give birth and automatically catch on to parenthood. Men more often learn and adapt to be fathers which in the end might make them better parents.
Change is never easy. When we change from married to single, parenting to co-parenting, and so on, it isn't easy. It surely isn't fun. It's scary. We feel like we're in constant free fall, but so do our children. So we do our best because as one single father writes, "Perhaps the journey of man to loving father does require some turbulence along the way."
He writes a post about the challenges that go along with becoming a single father and uses his own journey as an example.
7 "It Can Be Awkward, But It Takes A Village"
One mom puts in perspective how as parents we owe it to our children to put on our big boy or girl panties on and just deal with it. Deal with our ex spouse, deal with the parent of our child because we share a child. It's not always an easy feat. Many newly split couples lack communication. Many aren't even all that civil with one another.
She reminds us that co-parenting is putting into effect that concept that "it takes a village." Her ex husband includes her, the mother of his children, in on all family occasions along with his new fiancee and her family. Of course in the beginning it's awkward. It's also awkward for children to have their entire families and worlds flipped upside down.
But this is our child's family so in a way, it's our family too. This father and family put aside pettiness, jealousy, and bitterness because it's for their child's best interest. That's parenting done right.
6 "These Kids We Share Are My Priority"
One single father was given a shout out on Facebook from his ex because together they are making their daughter feel loved, happy, and whole. One way he does this is by having a nail polish collection for his daughter when she is with him. That's something that as moms we obviously have on hand, but dads aren't as likely to have.
It's that extra step of dedication and thoughtfulness that makes this single dad a true winner. His daughter is clearly his priority, and he didn't want her life to be shaken up anymore than it was by missing out on some of those little things.
When his daughter told her mom that she needed to buy more nail polish like what she had at her dad's, he simply sent her a picture of his collection. He didn't fight it. He didn't try to "win" or be the favorite. He communicated for the benefit of his child.
5 "His Late Mother Shines Through Him"
We've all seen Liam Neeson play a divorced dad in the Taken series movies, but we probably weren't aware that he's such an amazing single dad off the big screen as well. The single dad to two sons lost his wife in a ski accident back in 2009. He says that his sons keep his late wife's memory alive.
Despite a demanding job and full schedule, Neeson keeps his sons his top priority. He says that he sees his late love shining through his sons and their actions all of the time. We have to respect the love he sustains for his late love through his children. It is a reminder for all of us that it was a team effort to create our children.
These tiny humans are made with love with someone we loved at the time being. That's something that should be cherished through love, happiness, death, and divorce.
4 "Peace Is A Choice"
Many of us may have seen the family photo that went viral of a blended family including one single dad's ex wife and her new husband along with their shared children and her new child. It isn't easy he says. He shows some insight that things weren't always this way. It took time to get to this place, but they did it for their children. They were all family in one way or another.
He went from a relationship that only involved communication through lawyers to having dinner with is ex wife and her new husband. He tells Facebook that while divorce is messy we have control of our own actions. We can decide to be the bigger person for the sake of our children. This sets a good example for our children, and it also helps them to live in functional, loving, and respectful family.
3 "Because Boys Need Their Fathers"
Dwyane Wade took full time care of his sons since 2011. Being raised by a single father himself, Wade, explained that he believes that boys need their fathers to be examples in order for them to become men. The role of the father is vital to a child. While that may not always be possible, it is amazing when men actually want to step up and be fathers.
We hear way too many stories about dead beat dads who hit the road at the first sight of responsibility. Wade is certainly a breath of fresh air with his hands on approach to raising his sons.
Wade is a dedicated father. He has filled up his social media with photos of his family showing the good quality time he spends with his boys. Wade has taken in his nephew as well.
2 "I Helped The Kids Make My Ex's Birthday Special"
Facebook has been filled with amazing single dads lately. We certainly cannot forget the man who gets up early on his ex-wife's birthday, brings over flowers and gifts, and helps their children make her breakfast. That's something that married men don't even do for their wives sometimes.
This post caught A LOT of people off guard. Divorce is supposed to be filled with bitterness and hatred. We should be trying to make our ex's life miserable not better. Except thankfully this father realizes that there is more to the situation that just him and his ex wife. They have children that they need to mold into respectful human beings.
Instead of showing them one thing and telling them another, he shows his children how to be a respectful human and a gentleman. He shows them to show kindness and have manners.
1 "I Love My Ex-Wife"
Marriages end. We fall out of love, have irreconcilable differences, and so many other reasons. One single dad realizes though that despite the failure of his marriage there was a reason he married his wife in the first place. Marriage is serious, but so is divorce. While we loved someone enough to at one point sign up to spend our lives with them, that doesn't disappear just because of a divorce.
Divorce is hard on everyone especially the kids. It's confusing. Parents who get along during a divorce are admirable but this dad realizes its importance. Kids are very observant, and he realized how careful he and his ex wife had to be to remain friendly but not given their children false hope.
His love for his ex wife is one of friendship, but he admits that it has gotten in the way of his own relationships since. It is a tricky situation trying to date while having children with someone else. A divorced couple who get along still are a rare and complicated dynamic, but they are doing the best thing for their children.