An Open Letter to the Guy Who Said, “I Hate Being a Dad.”
I recently came across your post describing how you hated being a dad. After reading the comments on your post and doing a simple Google search I can see that you are not alone. Even those who’ve always wanted to be fathers often don’t anticipate how difficult it is to be a parent. It’s an overwhelming shock to the system. The fact that you never wanted to be a dad in the first place, as you explained, clearly makes your situation even worse.
Let me start by saying I appreciate your honesty. Most wouldn’t even admit feeling like you do to themselves, let alone to others. Second and more importantly, I commend you for not abandoning your family despite your feelings. However, going through life with an attitude of I hate being a dad will be detrimental to you and your children. There needs to be a change. In order for your life as a dad to be different, you need to recognize the following truths that you are missing.
Gaining freedom also means gaining loneliness.
Right now the grass looks greener. Your old single life is calling. It was a life without responsibilities. You want it back. However, it is important to remember the full picture of what you would gain if your wish were granted or if you were able to turn back time and make different decisions. You may gain your freedom but you would lose the companionship of your family and the daily love from your kids. In essence, you would gain loneliness. The grass is never as green as we think. Be grateful for what you have in your own yard.
Spend focused time mourning and then start living.
It’s time to say goodbye to your old life. It is never coming back. But first, spend some time mourning it. Mourn the life where you were free to do whatever you wanted because people weren’t depending on you. Write down all of those things you loved about that life. Allow yourself to feel every emotion about it. When you have mourned it fully, take the list of your old life and burn it. Now embrace your new life – this crazy, demanding, exhausting, big, beautiful life as a dad. Embrace it for the following reason.
Any life of significance involves sacrifice, suffering, and challenges to overcome.
Think of every book you’ve read, movie you’ve seen, or story you’ve heard that you thoroughly enjoyed. I guarantee the main characters dealt with trial and difficulty. They were probably called upon to sacrifice and give of themselves to something bigger than they believed they were capable. Heroism and nobility are never born out of comfort. [Tweet This] They are cultivated in the moments when we sacrifice and love unconditionally when we don’t want to give it. So embrace the high demand on your life as a dad. It is what will make the story of your life worth telling. And if you do it well, it will be your kids that pass your story down through generations.
What is your favorite thing about being a dad?