Equal Parenting Is Becoming a Thing and It’s F**king Awesome

By Katie Rosa

My husband’s got mad skills, and today I want to celebrate it. No, I’m not talking about his successful career or his manly ability to change a tire, nor am I talking about his mad game on the football field, though he has all of the above. I’m talking about his skills at daddinit, and he’s killing it. Every. Single. Day.

I live in Arizona where divorced parents share equal custody of their children. Yup, fifty-fifty. I’m not lookin’ to divorce my man, but I have learned these facts through some friends who had to go the route of divorce.

When first hearing of this fifty-fifty split custody, I thought: That’s terrible! No dad will ever do what moms do every day, and how does equal custody benefit the children? Won’t those dads neglect them? Will they give them enough love? You know, the kind a mother gives?

And then I sat back one day watching my husband, and he was daddinit with our kids so hard that I’m happy to say—I was wrong. Dads are becoming seriously hands on, and it’s freaking sweet. I have gained some much-needed peace of mind knowing that if I should die before I wake, my husband’s got this.

Arizona is on to something, and I think the rest of the country might want to pay attention. Yes, moms have that maternal instinct going on, but if you give a dad a toy and a baby, he might just bond with it—the baby, not the toy. And if you give him time to develop confidence in his parenting role, he may just start making some pretty good decisions.

We have been hoping for dads to be more involved with the kiddos, but mothers have a tendency to take over that domain, believing they know best, and then scream, “You’re not helping me enough!” when dad doesn’t know what to do. Admit it, moms, we are equally to blame if we take all the parenting responsibilities and then whine when we suddenly want their help. Don’t worry, dads, I see you.

We’ve all seen the photo of Ryan Gosling wearing a baby, and I’m here to say, there’s nothing sexier. It’s not just my husband I’ve noticed getting his hands dirty, either…lots of fathers are stepping it up in the parenting realm. I’ve seen plenty of Tap Out shirts covered in baby puke and muscled shoulders carrying diaper bags. You don’t have to take my word for it though; the modern dad is all over the Internet.

The more I thought about this wonderful phenomenon, the more I paid attention. I’ve even witnessed dads in public—come closer—nurturing their children. Don’t roll your eyes at me, moms. I’m not foolin’. And they weren’t even embarrassed about it!

Dads are taking their kids to Girl Scouts, play dates, Meet the Teacher Night, school dances, birthday parties, and doing homework with them. They’re having conversations with them about things other than stock options, football, and when is the proper time to change the oil in their cars.

And if you are thinking, “Well, dads should be doing these things! They shouldn’t get a ‘thank you’ for raising their kids. It’s their job!” let’s just recall that they are the victims of gender roles, same as we are. Working together to celebrate these hands-on dads might just help create a world where dads and moms can choose their own roles, whatever those roles may look like, without fear of judgment or embarrassment. A world where men don’t have to worry about being perceived as ‘a pussy’ or where women can have a career without losing their appearance of ‘motherly instinct’.

Dads, when you’re killin’ it at parenting, you are manly and sexy as hell. I got you.


About the Author

Katie Rosa is a writer, a former probation officer, a wife, and mother to two children, Jocelyn 8, and Liam 3. Jocelyn is her biggest fan and encourages her mother’s writing more than anyone else. You can find some of her work at her author website.