I was watching television the other day and noted a Public Service Announcement from the President. His brief point was that it was imperative that fathers spend a few minutes with their kids each day in order to obtain almost incalculable benefits.
I absolutely agree that raising your kids is your most important job. But to be honest, I don’t know what to make of this.
Does he mean that fathers simply are ignoring the kids completely and losing themselves in their own activities? Or that there has to be concentrated one-on-one or one-on-several sessions in addition to the everyday household time? Or is this some push for quality time to help cement paternal and family relationships?
The simple truth is that raising your children to survive as productive and decent members of society is the greatest responsibility of any parent, father or mother. This doesn’t come from trips or special occasions and celebrations, but from the everyday interactions that pass on values and beliefs. Even if you’re sharing custody, the time spent doesn’t have to include trips to the park or movies. It can simply be working in the kitchen or the yard, or chatting in the evening. When you adopt this approach, then it no longer becomes a question of how much time was spent with them or trying to figure out how to stuff that additional few minutes into what appears to be a packed day.
Trips to Disney or the beach are a wonderful time for a family. But those things are the icing on the cake. What goes into that cake are the simple ingredients that gather no special attention but really do make it a memorable thing.