Dads Stress About Spending Time with Their Kids
We’ve all heard the Harry Chapin classic “Cat’s in The Cradle” and we’re all touched by the sadness of the man discussed in the song who let the growth of his son slip away and ended up neglected by the same boy he couldn’t make time for. “He’d grown up just like me, my boy was just like me.”
That old classic song takes on deeper meaning today as a new Pew Center study reveals dads are feeling more and more guilty about juggling work and family.
Today’s fathers are twice as likely as mothers to feel they don’t spend enough time with their kids, even though they average far more hands-on time than dads from earlier generations: 46 percent characterized their child-rearing time as “not enough,” compared to 23 percent of mothers.
When I was a kid in the seventies, my father worked 86 hours a week combining Union City Fireman with sheet metal worker, as well as part time truck driver. We barely saw him and when we did, it was like a holiday. That was the way it was for the “greatest generation” who sacrificed themselves in work so that their children could have better lives.
My father and I bonded over sports, a topic that levels the playing field for any father and son. I would give him the knowledge that I had learned reading the sports pages and he would give me the perspective of his no BS opinions that I still use today. But as close as we were as ‘friends” over sports, there would still be hell to pay if I ever screwed up and needed to be disciplined. In those days there was a lot of discipline.
My sons are 6 years old now and even though I don’t get to spend the time I’d like to with them, I try to make every second count. I love to make them laugh, watch and listen to what they have to say, teach them about God and sports. I love just hanging out with them.
What about you? What are the fondest memories of hanging out with your dad and how much time do you get to spend with your kids?