I’m upset about dads behaving badly.
The stereotype of the bumbling, inept daddy still dominates public perception in the media, in schools, and sadly in some of our own homes. The demeaning stereotype sends a message to our spouses, sons, and daughters that fathers just aren’t quite good enough.
The stereotypes abound. The fathers in the TV show Grandfathered lead the pack. Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg denigrate each other in the comedy Daddy’s Home about a step-dad and bio-dad battling to be the alpha-male. In each of these scripts , the lone mother is always the voice of maturity (another stereotype).
Now don’t get me wrong. These paternal buffoons are funny. And, I’m not mad at Hollywood for entertaining us with this comic “Mr. Mom” stereotype. However, I am upset at Hollywood for not providing a balance with more positive, realistic portrayals. Remember Dustin Hoffman’s transformation at the end of Kramer vs. Kramer?
The reality is that times are changing. Men are taking the responsibility of parenthood with their own brand of love and leadership. Maternal instinct is being replaced by “parental” instinct. And, men are showing the world that parenting is a man’s job too.
Just look at Dads Behaving DADLY, a movement that celebrates the modern dad. Stay-at-home dad Hogan Hilling and entrepreneurs Shawn Fludd and Jay Forte are the founders, whose mission is to support dads and moms in their quest to unify, strengthen and inform the parenting community about the equal role they play as parents. Featured on the Oprah show, Hilling is spearheading the DADLY RALLY, uniting fathers from around the country. He says a special dynamic happens when fathers get together. They open up, connect, share, and support each other in a way not often seen in their everyday lives. He knows the RALLY will illuminate the special contribution that only a father can bring.
I hope Hollywood is watching.