Category: relating

In the movie, Big Daddy, Adam Sandler plays a dad in this movie called “Big daddy”. He tells his father and the judge why he deserves custody and he really is a “good father”. He really defeats fear… and says: “Don’t be scared.” The things we do for our kids as fathers, must not be done in fear.


Apparently his words have an impact, and we love this clip, and thought you would too.

What Makes a Good Father?

By: Shawn Donovan

Anyone can have children, but not anyone can be a father. So before you claim that “World’s Greatest Dad” mug, take a look at some of the criteria that illustrate how to be a good father.

Sharing time. You can’t be a father if you’re not around, let alone try to be a good father. Spending time with your children and being involved in their lives is imperative to being a good dad. You only get a few years to make a lifelong impression on your child. Don’t miss those moments because work or other interests seem more important.
Being a role model. As their father, your children naturally look up to you. They think of you as their superhero. While you may not be able to leap over buildings in a single bound, children are equally impressed by the simple things you do. Children will emulate your behavior. If you’re rude to a waitress, they’ll think it’s okay to be rude to waitresses. If you treat others with honesty and respect, your kids will do the same. It’s important that you lead by example, not by, “Do as I say, not what I do.” Always be mindful of what your children see, because you’ll see the same behavior down the road.
Being honest. How are you going to expect honesty from your children if you’re not honest with them? When your kids ask tough questions, you need to respond with open, but age-appropriate, answers. You may not want to talk about smoking pot in college or how you ran up a huge credit card debt, but you’re not doing your kids any favors if you lie to them. Tell them the truth and tell them what you learned from the experience. Tell your kids what you did wrong, and you may keep them from making the same mistakes.
Be loving, yet stern. It’s important that your children feel loved. That goes without question. But a father should never be a child’s friend. Loving your children means grounding them, withholding allowance when chores aren’t finished and saying no to things they really want. You are the authority figure in their life. If you’re too much of a pushover, your children will grow up lacking discipline. On the other hand, if you push them too hard, they may end up resenting you. A good father should know how to straddle this delicate line.


We are our Brother’s keeper! Ask Nathan McCall. He has a great book out called makes Me Wanna Holler: A Young Man Black in America. It will make you understand several plights of the African American Male. Examining the complexities of the problems of black youths from an insider’s perspective, an African-American journalist recalls his own troubled childhood, his rehabilitation while in prison, and his successful Washington Post career.

nathan mccall

Nathan McCall  is an African-American author who grew up in the Cavalier Manor section of Portsmouth, Virginia.

As the stepson of a Navy man, McCall also grew up in various locations, such as Morocco and  Norfolk, Virginia. After serving three years in prison, he studied journalism at Norfolk State University. He reported for the Virginian Pilot-Ledger Star and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution before moving to The Washington Post In 1989. He has dedicated his career to improving race relations in the United States.

In his first bookMakes Me Wanna Holler, McCall provides a detailed story of his life and the hardships he experienced growing up with racial profiling, class differences and peer pressure.

His second bookWhat’s Going On, used personal essays to discuss some larger issues such as social, cultural, and political tensions that affect the modern day United States.

After the success of his books, McCall was in demand as a speaker. He left The Washington Post for the lecture circuit. Today he continues to write, and holds the post of lecturer in the Department of African-American Studies at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.

His first novel Them: A Novel, dealing with issues of gentrification in an Atlanta neighborhood, was published in 2007. Them tells the story of Barlowe Reed, a single, forty-something African-American man, who has to come to terms with the gentrification of his neighborhood, in particular the influx of white people to the area.

Find out more about Nathan at

 Source: wikipedia

In a day and age where daughters are trying to find identity, and purpose and connect with their fathers, we commend angela Patton of Camp Diva, and Sheriff C.T. Woody at the Richmond County Jail for allowing permission for a daddy- Daughter dance in Richmond, VA.

Read more about it at this link. Read more  about Angela Patton and CAMP DIVA HERE.

Not every  father  has the privilege of being able to offer his son or daughter skills for living; but if you do,  parents may raise their children with  much stress and struggle.   We noticed there was a really good resource out that  describes well how to offer these skills of resilience  fathers, if you are wondering what helps your children to grow, its character. But even more resilient character.  Here are a few  wonderful privileges that exist from being a father you may be able to practice.

1. Insight  is the ability to see things as they are. Asking tough questions and giving honest answers.  It is sensing, knowing and understanding.

2.Independence is the ability to distance and/or disengage.  Separating/ Straying/ Disengaging Distancing emotionally and physically from the sources of trouble in one’s life.

3. Initiative involves taking charge of challenging situations or problems.

4. Relationships  need  continual exploration,  and being able to establish working relationships is key to  connecting. Managing  relationships involve making fulfilling connections to other people and developing close    connections to others.   –   Attaching/Connecting/ Recruiting 

5. Creativity   – Using imagination and expressing oneself in art forms.

6. Humor –  Playing/Laughing/ Shaping  finding the comic in the tragic.

7.  Morality –  Judging/Serving,/ Valuing  Acting on the basis of an informed conscience. 

father son pic-walk 2_edited-1

Source: The Resilient Self: How Survivors of Troubled Families Rise Above Adversity (Villard, 1993 ) By Steven J. Wolin, M.D. and Sybil Wolin, Ph.D.

Steven J. Wolin, M.D. is clinical professor of psychiatry at the George Washington University Medical School in Washington DC, director of family therapy training, and a long time investigator at the Center Family Research. His research is published in over 40 papers and in a book, The Alcoholic Family (Basic Books, 1988), co-authored with his colleagues at GWU. Dr. Wolin was the project director for a postdoctoral training program funded by NIAAA and for an OSAP-supported conference on children of alcoholics. He maintains an active clinical practice in psychiatry.

His wife, Sybil Wolin Ph.D. is a developmental psychologist. She has worked as an advocate for public school services for handicapped children, an educational diagnostician and tutor, and a teacher.

The Wolins are co-directors of Project Resilience, a private organization in Washington DC that consults to schools, clinics and prevention agencies. Since the Wolins began their work on resilience in the late 80’s, they have presented more than 200 workshop across the country and abroad, for instance, to state and county child welfare departments, alcohol and drug prevention agencies, school systems, professional associations, and mental health clinics.

asking tough questions and giving honest answers.


Your teen still needs you more than ever

Although it may seem like your teen doesn’t need you anymore, children at this age actually need their parents more than ever. And although it may seem like he isn’t listening to what you say, teens do consider their parents’ actions, opinions and values when making decisions for themselves. Life gets busier as children get older, and your teen probably spends most of his time outside of school with friends or talking to friends. Although these friendships are important, it is also important to talk and listen to your teen and spend time together as a family.

How to build a good relationship with your teen

  • Be actively interested in your teen’s life. Even though your child no longer needs you to arrange her get-togethers with friends, you should still know who her friends are and make an effort to meet their parents. Your teen may be responsible, but you should still know where she is, what she is doing, and who she is with.
  • Talk with your teen, not at him. Try to avoid arguing with your teen, because as both of you get more emotional, you will be less likely to listen to the other person and more likely to say something you don’t mean. If you need to, take a time out from the conversation and come back to it when you both are calm. Try to listen to your teen’s emotions and his point of view. Remember that things have changed from when you were a teen.
  • Share things with your teen. Your teen is old enough to understand what is going on in the world around her. Take your teen to work with you for a day to see what the real world is like. Talk to her about what she thinks she might want to do after high school and encourage her to explore this by taking on an after school job. Let your child know of stressful circumstances, such as if things are tight financially for your family right now. Children see and hear more than we think. Discuss things in the news with your teen.
  • Schedule in family time. Make sure to schedule some one-on-one time with your teen. Although everyone has busy schedules, take advantage of the short times you have his undivided attention, such as when you both are in the car together, to ask him about school or friends. Even though your teen may be too old for a bedtime story, take a few minutes to sit in his room when you go in to say goodnight and talk about things. Family dinners are important, even when your child is a teenager, so try to make sure you eat together as often as possible, and away from the television! Find an activity that you both can enjoy together, from going to the gym to watching the news together for a half hour every night.


  •  Source:

Do you know if your son or daughter is an introvert or extrovert?

This factor  is SO important in both getting to know your children and recognize their personalities’ as well as  helping your child to have a ‘ free spirit’ and  to be comfortable being themselves. Take the time to notice if your child is a loner, or needs to learn the social skills necessary in order “be”. Knowing your child’s temperament in this way can offer them better self- confidence.

Consider whether your child is an introvert, they pretty much have all these in common, if they do not they may be more of an extrovert. If they have half of these qualities, they may fall some where in the middle.

_____ When my child needs to rest, they don’t fall asleep easily in a room full of people. They prefer to spend time alone or with one or two close people .

_____ My child prefers to color or to write more than she likes to be active and jump around and play.

_____ My child likes to listen and observe more than he/she likes to talk.

_____ Some think my child is quiet, mysterious, aloof or calm.

_____ My child tends to notice details many people don’t see.

_____ My child tends to “zone out” if too much is going on, or escapes to another part of the room.

_____ My child likes to watch an activity for a while before he/she decides to join it.

_____ My child takes in lots of information, and it takes them awhile to sort it out, and put it into words.

_____ My child doesn’t like over-stimulating environments. He/She avoids loud and noisy children or noisy playrooms – they can be a bother.

_____ Sometimes my child has a strong reaction to smells, tastes, foods, weather, noises, etc.

_____My child is creative and/or imaginative.

_____ My child feels drained or irritable after social situations, even when he/she enjoys themselves.

_____ My child can become grouchy if around people or activities too long.

_____ My child often feels uncomfortable in new surroundings.

_____ My child tends to be very friendly, outgoing and has a strong personality .

Taken from the book : The Introvert Advantage, by Marti Olsen

Here’s another awesome article on introverts and extroverts:

An excellent article on introverts:

Here’s another:

The difference between the two:


It’s pertinent parents also know their child’s languages of love, but also that they know their OWN. Here’s a great link to help you, parents!

As adolescents grow, there are several things to keep in mind as a father.  Fathers can have sacred moments too.  It may mean you have to create them, but nonetheless, they are just as important. Make sure you are spending time with your adolescents. As time passes, fathers tend to allow their youth to become residents in the home, and forget about their needs, since they are so social, and connected to their peer groups. Here are a few pointers by Kyle D. Pruett, M.D. Author of “Fatherneed: Why father Care is as Essential As Mother Care for Your Child.” – to help you remember the call to fatherhood and connection.

Prepare Your Emotions

Sometimes young people get upset and have to share their emotions. It’s a part of them learning about and exploring their identity. It’s natural for them to be “out of line” and say a thing or two that makes a parent question whom they were conversing with.  In all seriousness, feelings get hurt and it’s important for dads to recognize that their daughters can be sensitive, and their sons can be disconnected at time, or only want to talk sports, but it’s very natural for a dad to remain sensitive as well to their adolescents emotions, sensitivities and social relationships and friends.

  • Your feelings are going to get hurt. Remember it s business, not personal. Expect to be challenged, but stay in control. Someone should.
  • This stage will reveal your lowest and highest feelings of satisfaction. It may be a bumpy ride, so hang on!

Prepare your calendar:

It’s important to remember kids have a social life, and most of them want to spend about 99.9 percent of it with friends! Try to make sure you give your kids planning input to vacations and offer places to visit and go to see so it will be as memorable to them, as it is to you. Get to know their friends, it can make the difference between a better relationship between you and them, and help you to know them better as well.

  • Chase your children down, and buy them lunch, and listen. Don’t’ wait for them to always come to you. They can’t.  Also… don’t preach, lecture, or begin any sentence with: “when I was a kid” (you didn’t appreciate this advice when you were a kid, either.)
  • Periodically, give each of your kids a day or half a day of your time, and don’t be upset if they want to bring a friend. (This may be the only way to make such a day possible.)
  • Think very carefully about family vacations.

Prepare your skills:

If you have absolutely no idea what’s going on in the teen world, then you really are missing something! Get to know teen culture and what teens like and with less opinion, and more open-mindedness – ask them about their interests and why they like what they do.

  • Read a good book about teens and discuss it with your partner.
  • Practice talking about your beliefs without lecturing.
  •  Listen to what your teen is thinking and believing and ask their input (don’t accept “I don’t know” for an answer!)  Ask them to express their intentions listen to their advice (and listen some more). 
  • Talk about your world, friends, the news – and engage your teens respectfully about theirs. 
  • Watch for radical changes in your teens; friends, sleep habits, or money usage.  He suggests you calmly  and respectfully inquire…. But don’t interrogate. 
  • Stay in touch with your kids’ life, by talking to teachers, coaches and counselors. 
  •  Talk about sex.  How to relate to other teens and discuss what healthy relationships should look like. (These conversations are supposed to feel uncomfortable, he reminds!)


Author & Contributing writer- Jennifer Owens, LMSW


Fathers & Humility

annisa thompson


Mature fathers have a take on humility. They understand fostering good relationships come from establishing good bonds with the child and their mothers.  However, some fathers cannot have this bond, though no matter how much they desire to have them. Yet others have learned not to take this for granted. Here, is a great article on how to establish good bonds as men. Whether with our children, or with others. 

This excerpt is taken from:  

Humility in Relationships
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
Sunday, June 13 2010 

“All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.'” – 1 Peter 5:5b 

I’ll never forget the first time I discovered what a feeling was. It was in my early forties. “Surely not!” you may be thinking. Yes, it is true. Since then, I have discovered many men still live in this condition. It took an older mentor to help me understand the difference between information and a feeling. Wives are frustrated because their husbands share information, but not their feelings. They want to know what is going on inside their man. The fact is, most men have not been taught to identify feelings, much less how to share them. It is something that men must learn to do because it is not a natural trait. If they do share their feelings, society often portrays them as weak. No man willingly wants to be portrayed as weak.In order to become an effective friend and leader, one must learn to be vulnerable with others and develop an ability to share feelings. It is a vital step to becoming a real person with whom others can connect emotionally. This is not easy to do if your parents did not teach you to share your emotional life with others. Emotional vulnerability is especially hard for men. Author Dr. Larry Crabb states, 

Men who as boys felt neglected by their dads often remain distant from their own children. The sins of fathers are passed on to children, often through the dynamic of self-protection. It hurts to be neglected, and it creates questions about our value to others. So to avoid feeling the sting of further rejection, we refuse to give that part of ourselves we fear might once again be received with indifference. When our approach to life revolves around discipline, commitment, and knowledge [which the Greek influence teaches us] but runs from feeling the hurt of unmet longings that come from a lack of deeper relationships, then our efforts to love will be marked more by required action than by liberating passion. We will be known as reliable, but not involved. Honest friends will report that they enjoy being with us, but have trouble feeling close. Even our best friends (including spouses) will feel guarded around us, a little tense and vaguely distant. It’s not uncommon for Christian leaders to have no real friends. [Larry Crabb, Inside Out (Colorado Springs, Colorado: Navpress, n.d.), 98-99.] 

If this describes you, why not begin on a new journey of opening up your life to others in a way that others can see who you really are? It might be scary at first, but as you grow in this area, you will find new freedom in your life. Then, others will more readily connect with you. 

This article can be found here.