*Post in association with Jessica Foreman
Now a worldwide tradition (but held in different times throughout the year in different countries), Father’s Day signifies the importance of the bond between child and dad. Most lucky children know how special their father is to them and no one-off day is needed, but it perhaps concentrates their minds a little bit on what their dad means to them.
Father’s Day is celebrated in different ways by different fathers. One dad might just want a card, another might want his hands on the Sky controller for the afternoon – a real luxury when children are involved! One father might want to pop out for a pub meal with steaks and beers, another might want tickets to the cricket. One might love a personalised gift for Father’s day, another might just want to hear the three words “I love you.”
So while the Father obviously doesn’t physically carry the child through pregnancy and might lack the spiritual bond that mothers possess, fathers can fulfil some of the other numerous parenting duties of a mother.
They can provide shelter, warmth, food, light and comfort from an early age, helping the child thrive, and also helping the mother to help the child thrive. They provide emotional help, they give advice on careers and girlfriends or boyfriends and money, and one day, when your little one is ready to become a mum or dad themselves, parenting. And of course, when the time comes, the bank of dad is usually open for the same hours as the bank of mum.
It’s believed that Father’s Day started more than 100 years ago in Spokane in Washington by Sonora Dodd, a daughter aggrieved by the fact there was no specific day to mark the achievements of fathers. She had a reason to feel so passionate about the day; Dodd was one of six siblings brought up by their father after the mother died in childbirth. Within 15 years the day was recognised by US president Calvin Coolidge in 1924, and 48 years after that President Nixon established it as a permanent national event on the third Sunday of June. Dodd is now known as “The Mother of Father’s Day”.
Events such as International Women’s Day celebrate the numerous achievements of females, and rightfully so. It also highlights the work that is still needed for true equality between the sexes, and while there is clearly an imbalance weighted towards men in many aspects of life, some fathers might argue that there is a lack of equality when it comes to parenting. Bodies such as Fathers 4 Justice have long campaigned for equality following separation, for example, believing they are just as important in their offspring’s upbringing.
Fathers are special. They are different to mothers in many ways but they usually care just as much, and do just as much. Showing you love them for one day is the least you can do – showing you love them every day should be one of your life missions as a son or daughter.