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i wont launch into any stories here, but i came over to the dad board cuz i wanted some male perspective. i have a couple of female friends with babies...thier partners, the dads , are just being lame in my opinion. the stories of these women are very differnt but common to both are guys who are loving to thier babies, yet they have no problem going out all night to the bar or whatever,and hang out with other women, and blah blah blah....when these guys are around they obviously love theri kids, but why is it seemingly SO COMMON that the dads take off to play, etc, and the moms are left at home , default parent, pissed, etc. the dads form new friendships and relationships and the moms become isolated in the home, caring for the baby. these two relationships i am thinking of are coming to an end, and things are really messed up in both cases. i know the moms are equal partners in the problems but what i dont get is how it is seemingly so easy for these men to walk away from thier families rather than do whatever it takes to create some stability .......even if it means mom and dad live in separate homes, but just stability and commitment to the children first. the men just dont seem to have thier concousness focused on their kids at all, its like the kids are fun, but not the main focus.<br><br>
have any of you been in this position, or do you know men who are? i am not trying to demonise anyone, i am seriously just trying to portray the scenario as i see it, and see what kind of feedback i get about it.
 

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I don't have much insight here but I do know what you're talking about. My wife and I are acquainted with probably a dozen or so young families with babies less than a year old. It's interesting to see how different the fathers are. To be honest, there's only a couple that are anything like you describe. As far as I know, at least. I love staying home with my daughter while the mommies get out together and have fun.
 

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hey well, I'm not a dad.... but I am one of those moms you speak of. I can't give a good answer, but my opinion is that perhaps b/c of our culture's general denial of adulthood and responsibility (heh, I sound like a conservative republican. don't worry, I'm definitely NOT) men are becoming fathers, subconciously freaking out, and trying to revert to old behaviors, and so are pulling away. doesn't mean they don't love the kids and want to spend time with them/ be their dads, but they don't seem to "get" the responsibility level that comes with parenting. women have to be stable, and stay home by default. someone has to care for the young ones.<br><br>
I know that unfortunately before marriage and kid, with one period of exception with a previous girlfriend, my partner never had to be a grown person, (lived on ramen, played video games, dated lots of women) and unfortunately he's made some choices that have reflected that he still isn't wanting to be there yet. though he definitely loves our child.<br><br>
I'd love to know what dads have to say too.<br><br>
-Lau
 

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I stay home all the time. I never go out with friends. I play video games all the time. My wife says I can go out whenever but when I do she says she always gets stuck with the kids. So instead of anyone having any amount of fun I stay home.<br><br>
I have no life.
 

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I have no problem with my dh going out now and then. We share a lot of the same friends and it doesn't bother me if he goes to a movie or something with them.<br><br>
My dh doesn't drink though so he wouldn't be hanging out in bars but I think dhs should get some relax time just as we need some relax time occasionally.<br><br>
I guess it all depends on what he was doing with that time. If he was hanging out with other women, then yeah I would be furious and our friends would be in serious trouble too!<br><br>
If he had some sort of hobby he liked persuing with his friends then that's fine IMO my dh has some hobbies that he enjoys and I boot him out of the house to go do that sometimes.<br><br>
A lot of men don't have hobbies and I think this is where they don't really have much to do other than hang out in a bar if they are getting relax time.<br><br>
Dhs need hobbies too.
 

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Let me try to give you one man's opinioin.<br><br>
I'm a stay at home dad, and throroughly enjoy staying home with my son. My hobby is gaming. Not video games, but minature wargaming. To sum up, I spend countless hours while the boy is asleep painting little toy soldiers so I can go out with other geeks and recreate the Battle of Borodino or some such thing.<br><br>
I find that getting out and away from the house serves as a sort of stress relief. Interacting with my friends for a day gives me the chance to let some of the stress of being at home with my son while simultaneously taking care of my pregnant wife bleed away. I feel this helps me to be a better father and husband when I am at home. When I don't get out, stress builds up and I can be a wee bit cranky.<br><br>
My wife's view is that I shouldn't have to leave the home to release stress and I should want to spend every minute at home like she does. I certainly understand that, but I'm not wired that way. Even if I were working, I would need something away from home to allow myself to bleed off the stress from work and home.<br><br>
The point I'm trying to make (although poorly I am sure) is that some men need a chance to get out and away. We love our wives and families, but need a break from them on occasion.<br><br>
Hope that helped a bit. My only suggestion is to talk and communicate.
 

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Personally, as a male, I think it rather unfair to have the exact same "expectations" for every person. Each is an individual and to have such "false" expectations of who and what a father MUST be will surely lead to expectations not being met and the end of your family.<br><br>
I do the "stay at home" thing too. Because I do does not mean I expect every male to be that same as me.<br><br>
I know men that can't even change(or won't) a diaper. Are they "bad" Dads? I don't think so.<br><br>
MNS
 

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I certainly can relate...My wife and I are rare amongst those we know...Most Dads don't seem very interested in their offspring, and fall back onto those age old gender stereotypes. We tried to avoid them as much as possible, and then, when my wife returned to work she took an afternoon shift, which completely broke me of any ideas of letting her do most of the work! Again, I wasn't too inclined to do that anyway.<br><br>
I think it is a shame for both father and child when the dad tunes out. My DD makes my heart swell in ways I didn't think possible. Those poor fools out there watching nascar or something and missing out are sad, sad people.<br><br>
BTW, I do agree with the poster who pointed out that everyone has different social needs. It is important to know what your needs are. Often times it is foolish to expect your SO to fill all needs, and foolish as well to expect that you can always fill your SO's needs.<br><br>
Anyway...my two cents (about 1.4 cents USD)<br><br>
Rich
 

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what <b>is</b> this, the "dad-bashing" forum? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rolleyes">:
 

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Dh is a SAHD - spends all day every day with DD. She's the light of his life.
 

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My dh is not like that at all and neither are the dads of our friends. Dh thinks dads like this are just losers. Unfortunatly, his brother is like this and he's pretty much written him off after years of trying to get him to see how important his presence is to his children and how much he is missing by choosing his friends over his family. I do think women don't help matters when they let themselves fall into the trap of being "default parent". Plan a time when you want to go out and just go- and leave the kids with him.<br><br>
We both go out with our friends once a month or so- NOT hanging out in bars, but to the movies, out to dinner, or in dh's case, usually playing computer games with a group of guys. I think this is healthy. We all need to maintain friendships and have some sort of outlet since parenting is really consuming work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
ok, so i am the original poster, and i wanted to thank you all for your responses, alot of them made alot of sense.<br><br>
to davidspalding who said "what is this, the "dad-bashing" forum?"...i tried to make it clear when i said " i am not trying to demonize anyone" that i wasnt trying to bash any dads. sorry if you took it that way.<br><br>
i also wanted to respond to the posters who said that everyone is differnt and some people need to go out for stress release, etc....yes, i am all about that , i wasnt saying the going out itself was the thing, its more the attitude along with it that i was hoping to get at...but you are right, people do need to get out and there is nothing wrong with that....like i dont interpret a person needing to go out as being a detached parent. the 2 dads i was thinking about just seem to feel entitled to just go hang out as long as they want whenever they want without giving much thought to the mother or the child, and they dont seem to place the needs of their children on as high as a priority as other dads i know and moms too.<br><br>
to contrast this, my DH likes to go out too, and so do i , but we try to do it in a really give-and-take kind of way. we take turns, do each other favors , etc in order to make it all feel balanced and worth it to the other person, and we communicate. i feel like my dh is extremely emotionally present for my son, especially in comparison to these other guys, so i guess thats why thier behavior strikes me as shockng.<br><br>
i do know that these fathers i speak so ill of DO love thier babies very very much. i have seen it on theri faces, and truly, how couldnt they. so that isnt the issue either. but love isnt everything sometimes. i think the person who talked about a culture of childishness is right on. that spoke to me the strongest, personally.<br><br>
thanks again for the discussion.
 

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stirringleaf,<br><br>
twas I who posted about the "culture of childishness" (your phrase, but I think it sums it up nicely).<br><br>
I was reading a book yesterday, about womens' sexuality and spirituality, and one of the women in the book made the point that the reason behind painful and scary male initiatory rituals in tribal societies was that it was understood that women go through the birth experience, nature initiates us, and in order to create a balance, humans have chosen to create a similar life altering experience for men to mark the change from childhood to adulthood.<br><br>
well, we don't live in a tribal society, and I don't think we have a comparable ritual for men in our society.<br><br>
I'm not touting this as a full explanation, because I know women with children who don't act much like adults either, but it seems to make some sense to me.<br><br>
-Lau
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;"><i>Originally posted by stirringleaf</i><br>
to davidspalding who said "what is this, the "dad-bashing" forum?"...i tried to make it clear when i said " i am not trying to demonize anyone" that i wasnt trying to bash any dads. sorry if you took it that way.</td>
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sorry to sound like i'm flaming you, but your basic question and supposition is irksome. ... i had read in rapid succession three threads in ths forum which took a smarty pants, negative view of fathering, and generalized male participation in the "question" (some questions are thinly disguised polemics, not necessarily yours). i took no personal offense, but do question the value of a "Dads" forum in which women post frequently, and some of the posts have a derogatory slant.<br><br>
okay, let's take your question anew:<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">... the men just dont seem to have thier concousness focused on their kids at all, its like the kids are fun, but not the main focus.<br><br>
have any of you been in this position, or do you know men who are? i am not trying to demonise anyone, i am seriously just trying to portray the scenario as i see it, and see what kind of feedback i get about it.</td>
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okay, <b>no, i don't know any fathers like this</b>, but perhaps that's because i don't know any dads who go "out all night to the bar or whatever,and hang out with other women, and blah blah blah...." i have no idea what you mean by "blah blah blah," but i can guess...! if any one here knows fathers who are all-night carousers, please do chime in. <cue deafening silence><br><br>
[edit]<br><br>
to answer your topic question, <b>"why do alot of dads i know seem way less child centered? "</b> ... suggestion -- start associating with a different group of parents? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"><br><br>
i'll admit, some dads may seem lame from the third person perspective, but guess what, from that same outside-looking-in perspective, a lot of mothers appear lame, too. does this mean anything? not a lot. from your description, <b>"... guys who are loving to thier babies, yet they have no problem going out all night to the bar or whatever,and hang out with other women, and blah blah blah....when these guys are around they obviously love theri kids, but why is it seemingly SO COMMON that the dads take off to play,..."</b>, how can we avoid saying, "oy, vey, these losers are <b>not</b> being involved parents." but i take offense at the statement, "SO COMMON that the dads take off to play..." that's a generalization that you're making based on your own corner of the world. it's really not like that in my little corner of the world. all'f my friends who are fathers are truly dedicated.<br><br>
since i'm not in that household that you're describing, i have to presume that there are other things going on that we're not privy to. maybe they have an arrangement ... maybe they're really young ... maybe they're "party people" and couldn't change lifestyles when Baby arrived. or maybe ... they're just not my type of people. welcome to the real world.<br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wave.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wave"><br><br>
i think parenting is a very, very personal and individualistic enterprise, so it's risky to judge others based on hearsay and infrequent observation. generalizing (or stereotyping) a group ("moms," "dads") based on these assessments is just asking for trouble.<br><br>
there, just my 2¢, stepping off the soapbox....<br>
_________<br><br>
birthinglau ... i wonder if an effective "rite of passage" might be compulsory military service. most armed forces basic training is quite an indoctrination in individual accountability and team effort (sharing, helping). my 12 years of service left a positive mark on me. i meet many young men who i think would get a world of benefit from the character stengthening that military service imposes. just a thought.<br><br><span style="font-size:xx-small;"><span style="color:#800000;">Edited several times to remove passionate, yet undiplomatic, statements.</span></span>
 

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I'm married to one of those dads. He's out right now in fact, because "he didn't want to sit around watching a movie on Friday night". And, I didn't want to take our 17 month old to hang out with dh's german bachelor friend and his other bachelor friends at the guys house at 8:30 p.m. (mind you dh complains if *I* don't get dd to bed early enough, but he wants us to take her out at that hour!).<br><br>
I'm am just sitting here thinking the same thing as the original poster asked.<br><br>
What the hell? Why is it that h (dropping the d on purpose) views childrearing as this boring burden putting a crimp in his social life.<br><br>
Someone else said, "maybe you need to start associating with a different crowd". That's what I'm thinking...<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"> Maybe it's just time to realize that dh and I are heading down two very different roads. I think he'll be happier if I just let him go, and I'm almost positive that I'll be happier if dd and I head on our way.<br><br>
The single most joyous moment of my life was when the midwife laid that warm, wet, bundle of life on my belly for the first time. Wish it had also been for my husband.<br><br>
Judi
 

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david-<br><br>
I'm going to have to disagree with you on most points re: compulsory military service. to be fair I will state that I have never been involved in the military, but it is my understanding that it operates via strict hierarchy and often employs humiliation as a tactic to break down the sense of self, so it can be refashioned into a new sense of self.<br><br>
my own personal belief in pacifism also causes me to think that taking young men and impressing upon them the belief that killing and war are necessary, positive aspects of life is a reprehensible idea. Here in the US homophobia is also a part of that indoctrination, and as a bisexual woman I find that very upseting. I also find the reportedly high incidence of domestic abuse amoung families in the armed forces to be disturbing, though maybe not surprising.<br><br>
In addition, if the issue is men not being available to their families, then I am not sure that requiring them to serve a period of time, potentially taking them away from their families without choice (because we know we can't always choose the exact time a baby will come into our lives) with the possibility that they might not return (lets be honest here) is a good idea.<br><br>
so, in summary, I think that daddies trained for violence would not help this issue at all.<br><br>
I do agree with you on the point of it being an indoctrination, however.<br><br>
-Lau
 

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Woh! Hold on. I think the women are equals in their relationships. If they don't like the way their husbands are spending their time with or without the kids it's their responsibility to step up and work something out with their husbands. If it's not your dh then what concern is it to you? It's totally petty to try to blame these guys, and then give their wives a pity party as if they are a victim. This thread seems to go looking for jabs at Dads, under guise of wanting to understand a different perspective. Do you really expect a Dad to stand up and say "That's me, I go out drinking, hanging out with women, I just have fun with my kids but don't parent concientiously because....."?<br>
It's as simple as different families operate different ways. Make yours work as close to how you want as you can.<br>
Sorry if this is too harsh. I thought the Dad's forum was supposed to be support for the Dad's who visit this board. How would us Mom's feel if the reverse question of this was asked of us?
 

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Ps My dh goes out way more often than I do. He goes to bars occasionally, gets drunk and has a hangover. I am perfectly happy with that because he still gives me plenty of time to take bubble baths, read my books, do my sewing, go thrift store shopping, alone. He's an extroverted jock. I'm an introverted bookworm. We're both happy with how we have it worked out, even if others might judge us because I do so much more of the childcare than him, and he goes out a lot more than I do. I have no idea what to do 'going out' as I don't want to go to a bar, and most of my friends are Moms who don't want to go out either. We balance each other.
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;"><i>Originally posted by birthinglau</i><br>
I'm going to have to disagree with you on most points re: compulsory military service. to be fair I will state that I have never been involved in the military, but it is my understanding that it operates via strict hierarchy and often employs humiliation as a tactic to break down the sense of self, so it can be refashioned into a new sense of self.</td>
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a common misconception based on movie stereotypes. the reality in the better services is way more modern and humane. you've got a lot of nerve spouting hyperbole about something you have no personal experience in.<br><br>
services like the Coast Guard and Air Force teach a few more things than "war and killing." if you want my respect in this conversation, you gotta show more open-mindedness than "military = violence and mayhem." some of hte things i learned included lifesaving, safety, mentoring, protection of civil rights, responsibility, taking care of your team/family ... and respecting others' opinions. ... something that alternative lifestyles don't always inculcate.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Woh! Hold on. I think the women are equals in their relationships. ...</td>
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ja, i'm with you. this thread has digressed. i'm getting out before it becomes an out-and-out flame-fest.
 
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