Thoughts of a father: The surprising truth about being a parent

Thoughts of a father: The surprising truth about being a parent
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I have always wanted a big family — three or maybe five kids. When I shared this with my friends, they thought I was crazy. "What? Five children? Are you out of your mind?" Today, I have one adorable little boy and my outlook towards life has completely changed after becoming a parent.

But more importantly, I wanted to take the opportunity to address the elephant in the room: why so many fathers are labelled 'bad parents'.

One person once told me — "Family with one children rears selfish person; family with two will see constant battle and comparison between the two; family with three is a normal family; four is not for everyone; five is for strong parents!"

Yes, this was a mother of five children. And I began to understand what she meant. I am at step one, but I see how our focus and dedication towards our first child might turn him into a tiny, spoiled, selfish person.

Before the baby arrived

Before the baby, I thought having a family and children wasn’t so difficult. I knew that love is a choice, and I have chosen to love my wife. I did not know much about parenting, pregnancy and the different phases a woman goes through.

When my wife told me that she was pregnant, I was in for a surprise. We always wanted a baby, which may sound strange because most men are not expected to expect a baby. You do not think about it every day.

I was used to using a planner, a schedule, setting goals and being focused on my job and tasks. I thought that I was 100 per cent ready for the child because I am so organised. I was ready to support my wife, and I knew that there might be some difficulties.

ALSO READ: Men with 'dad bods' are seen as better fathers, more likely to stay committed in relationships: Study

After the baby

My whole life turned upside down. Well, I was not surprised about most of the things that happened, but I really changed. Our child is almost one year old now. I have read tens of articles and different books about parenting and children. 


My wife had a difficult birth and she needed time to recover. The first days when she and the baby arrived at home were a real shock for both of us.

The wife and the baby were crying at the same time. Sleep was not the same, work was not the same, my schedule was not the same and I stopped filling my planner.

We are truly dedicated to learning everything we need to know about children. Having a baby is like a 24/7 job and you do not get paid for it.

You may be a thorough professional, but sometimes you feel like a total failure when it comes to parenting.

Why are so many fathers labeled as bad parents?

As a father who wanted to give his best for the family, I tried to do everything in my power. Something that annoyed me inside was that the baby needed the mother more than me. I could not calm him as his mother could, I could not take care of him as his mother could, I was not as patient as his mother was.


There was a moment when I thought that fathers do not have to be involved in parenting before the child understands human language.

I am sure that many fathers feel the same and think that their role is not so important. However, this is not true. Fathers need to be involved in parenting more than they think. I can even say that fathers who genuinely care about their families have to be mindful and proactive parents.

Nine months later, I think that the father’s role is vital and different from that of the mother. When my wife arrived home with the newborn, I had to show true love and support her every day. My wife went through postnatal depression. And even after she went through this period, she needed me every day.

While the child was growing, I could see how my presence at home (I was working at home) and the time I spent with them gradually influenced them. My wife was feeling better, and the child was growing every day. I do not regret spending even one minute with them.

The moments when I help my child are among the most precious moments in my entire life. And right now, our connection is much stronger than I expected.

The reason many fathers are labelled as bad parents is this: they feel desperate inside. They do not understand what their role is and how they could help the newborn and their wife.


It took me a while to understand this and to start working on my mind. I had to change my thoughts; I had to “die” for myself; I had to change my priorities.

I had to understand that the future of two other lives lies in my hands. I had to understand and accept that my wife is better.

Better? My wife was better than me? What do I mean? Yes! My wife was better than me. One father can never possess the qualities a mother has.

Every night when I see how my wife wakes up, never angry at the crying baby, it surprises me and makes me think about her sacrifices. I could not do it. I did not have the same strength.

Do fathers fail to understand their own importance?

Many fathers are labeled as “bad parents” and even neglectful parents because they do not understand their importance. I am sure that some fathers do not care about their family, but even those who genuinely care sometimes feel desperate and weak.

Being a father is maybe the most incredible gift for every man. Being a husband and having a child may be accepted as the most significant challenge, too.

I will leave you with a few questions. No matter if you are a woman or a man, how important is your family to you? Are you giving your best? Are you trying to be proactive?

Love is a choice. Choose to love every day!

This article was first published in theAsianparent.

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