Just A Few Things That Tick Me Off Every Father’s Day…
I realize this is a very controversial topic and many have very strong views on the subject matter, but I also believe the conversation is needed. I have chosen to blog about this topic today as I reflect on not only the absolutely AMAZING Father in the Evans household, and the AMAZING fathers in our circle, but I am also choosing to blog on this topic because I believe the ramifications this practice has on our expectation of our community can be detrimental, especially to the Black community.
Let me begin by applauding the strong efforts of single mothers who are strong, relentless and faithful to their families. I am clear that single mothers possess the courage needed to sacrifice her own needs to make sure her family has the basic essentials of life. However, this does not excuse the absence of a father figure, or make the practice of honoring mothers on Father’s Day an acceptable trend for our community. A mother’s love and warmth should be complimented by the leadership of the father playing his role in the life of a child and in the life of a family. When this is not the case and a father does not serve his proper role in the life of his child and his family the village needs to call it out, hold them accountable, and openly shun the piss poor behavior he demonstrates. Much of the concern we have is when we don’t call “foul” on deadbeat fathers inner communities, yet we bust it up with them, hang out with them, call them our friends all while knowing they are destroying the life of a child. We need to call I out and make it clear that “those in my circle take good care of their responsibilities or they are cut”. That’s the bottom line. Respect is not given to those who choose to destroy the liftoff a child or only believe their responsibility stops at the pennies the court mandated them to provide.
We have some work to do in this regard and I will speak to the concern and effects of absentee fathers on a later post, but Father’s Day is the opportunity to celebrate the AMAZING FATHERS that are doing an AMAZING JOB everyday and not the opportunity to take a dig at those who are not.
These are the 4 things that just burn me up!
- It burns me up that card stores now have full sections of cards designated for single mothers on father’s day (Just another way to profit off of plight).
- It burns me up that entrepreneurs as well as big businesses are now profiting off of this trend. We are now selling mugs, t-shirts, and other paraphernalia that speaks to honoring single moms on Father’s Day. There are even tear-jerker commercials that now perpetuate this as well. Mind you Black consumers are the targeted audience.
- It burns me up that social media is filled with so many people shouting out their mothers on Father’s Day to prove the point that their mother has worn two hats and took on the exhausting role of both parents. Is there a need to celebrate single mothers? Yes there is, but that should be done daily and not as a dig on Father’s Day.
- It burns me up that our community perpetuates the dismantling of our family structure through this form of rhetoric. Is it no wonder the face of this movement is usually a face of color? It’s a ploy and a method to subconsciously make us believe this is a Black Father problem, when such is not the case. (Refer to the data in my last blog about the real statistics about Black Fathers and not the narrative they want us to believe…We need to wake up!) https://cultivatinggreatnesswithteamevans.org/2019/06/10/5-lies-we-should-stop-telling-about-black-fatherhood/
Let me begin by stating that at the end of the day I believe it is up to the child to make the decision of how they choose to honor their mother and father based on what they believe they deserve… This means that if they decide that the way to honor their single mother is by wishing her a happy Father’s Day then that is their prerogative, but it is in my opinion a detriment in many ways.
As an independent and strong Black Woman, I recognize that I am capable of doing many things , but the one thing I am NOT capable of doing is being a father. I acknowledge the fact that I have never been a single parent and I have never had to play the role of both parents. I have never had to be the person who does all the heavy lifting when it comes to raising our children and I have never had to financially provide for our children on my own. As a matter of fact, I have never even had to worry about trying to figure something out on my own concerning our children because I have always had a helpmate in that area. I started by making this clear because I know some may say that I am not qualified to speak on this subject, since I have never had to experience it, but I beg to differ. The fact of the matter is, my not experiencing the pressures of single motherhood does not disqualify me from recognizing practices and trends that are detrimental to our culture and our family structure as a whole.
Aside from the fact that a woman can never be a man let alone replace one, there are some very logical reasons as to why I believe mothers should leave this day for REAL FATHERS to be honored and appreciated. In my opinion here are just a few reasons why:
- Celebrating mothers on a day that is meant for fathers marginalizes the role of fatherhood. It sends the wrong message for a woman to accept recognition for acting as a father, even if she thinks she’s doing the duty of a man.
- We have to really ask ourselves if we have watered down the idea of fatherhood in our communities so much that now we just believe we can do away with them.
- By taking credit for being a father or serving the role of a father and stating to our children that women can play both roles, we are making it clear that fathers are replaceable.
- It is heartbreaking and down right despicable that some fathers choose not to be a part of their children’s lives, but that doesn’t mean that their absence is irelevant
- We have to recognize when it’s time to counter the mainstream media, which typically depict African-American fatherhood as a wasteland of dysfunction and irresponsibility
- Such is not the case. Make sure you read teh article I posted from the Huffington Post on the 5 lies we should stop telling about Black Fatherhood
By all means as a society I believe we should continue to find ways to strengthen, empower and honor single women who continue to hold it down for their families. I truly believe they deserve honor for their extreme commitment and dedication but being honored on fathers day is just in my opinion not the way to do that.
There is a long standing disagreement over whether or not single mothers should be celebrated on Father’s Day but I am of the school of thought that ONLY REAL FATHERS should be celebrated on Father’s Day. The word REAL FATHERS does not include mothers who have had to play double duty, those who have had to wear many hats, the ones who have had to show up for everything because a piss poor father didn’t, and it also doesn’t include the ones who attended every recital, football game, graduation and birthday without a father in sight. Unfortunately this is the reality for many families. It’s an absolute travesty and certainly the debate on how to address absentee fathers is an age old debate that for the sake of the children is worth keeping at the forefront of all of our conversations. But, Mother’s Day is for awesome mothers and Father’s Day is set aside for awesome fathers period. Are there mothers who have had to do all of the things I have previously written? Yes there are. Are there mothers who have had to play double duty? Yes there are. Are there mothers who have not been given any support for their children through their entire life? Of course there are. The answer is yes to each of these questions, but that still does not make what is happening in our society ok.
Often times women are thrust into the role of a single parenthood due to circumstances outside of their control. My heart breaks for women who raise their children entirely on their own, with no visitation or child support from the father and my heart breaks even more for the children who are most impacted by this. These women deserve to be honored and celebrated on Mother’s Day, and every day of the year as a matter of fact. But we don’t have to call them “father” or have to acknowledge them on Father’s Day in order to make it clear that they’re parenting with the weight of the world on their shoulders. “Happy Father’s Day” to a mother is not the type of praise needed to commend them on doing an incredible job as a parent.
I was the child of two absolutely wonderful parents. My father was a horrible husband but was a GREAT father (Hence the divorce lol). He demonstrated for me what true love was and also modeled for me what a true provider was. The sacrifices my father made, the wonderful love he showed me as well as the mistakes he made all allowed me to know the qualities I would look for in the man I chose as the father of my children. Though my father and mother divorced when I was very young and my mother did most of the heavy lifting, all of the doctors appointments, much of the financial burden and all of the late nights and early morning stresses she still could have never replaced my father. Not only could she have never done it but she also never tried. She was and is the most awesome mother even today. Now she’s the most awesome grandmother but nothing replaces my father. My father was always around, always provided, always showed up, came through the the Wu in most times, but even after his death when he can no longer do all of those things I still honor the fact that Mother’s Day is for my mom and now Father’s Day is for me to remember my dad.
I will end the way I began this post with the fact that I understand the reason some feel a need to honor their mothers on father’s day and ultimately I believe that at the end of the day it is up to the child to make the decision of how they choose to honor their mother and father based on what they believe they deserve… The child giving the card or the acknowledgment is by all means doing it in love and I have no problem with that, I just pray we realize the manipulation big business is playing on a very sensitive issue affecting many families. We are marginalizing, diminishing the role of fathers and sending the wrong message concerning our expectations of fatherhood in our communities
Hold Deadbeat Father’s Accountablee and Celebrate Awesome Mothers But let’s Be Careful of What We Allow To Be Perpetuated In Our Communities… Let’s Celebrate our Fathers and Fill Facebook With The Greatness, Joy and Immeasurable Need Of Real Fatherhood This Weekend!
P.S. Shout Let Me Not End This Post Without Shouting Out The ABSOLUTELY AMAZNG FATHERS IN OUR INNER CIRCLE… There are too many to name but if you don’t meet the below criteria get out our circle PERIOD!
REAL FATHERS DO REAL THINGS…
Thank you to the amazing fathers that surround us…
- Alphonso Evans
- Russell Moody
- Eric Moody
- Kevin Jones
- Reggie Day
- Steven Gardner
- Gregory Neil
- Hakim Scott
- Tony Mitchell
- Rel Flournoy
- Ato Entsuah
- Lox Knox
- Gregory Wright
- Bar-rae Choice
- Richard Walker
- Ryan McLeod
- Kevin Abney
- Jeffrey Carpenter
- And So Many More