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An open letter to a single dad

Category: home

I feel you, single dad, but the toughest roads lead to the greatest destinations. As a single dad, you’ll understand the significance behind the sentiment.

As a single dad, Father’s Day can be a bittersweet time. It elicits feeling of both gratitude and sorrow at the same time. In many ways, I wish I wasn’t a part time father. Sure, it’s better than not being a father at all, but the ‘part-time’ job title doesn’t sit well with me. And as with many single dads, it’s the card that I was dealt.

Despite the hardships of separation, nothing matches the joy of watching your kids grow. Seeing yourself in them, and seeing a part of you in another. 

The major challenges come in missing out on major childhood milestones. The birthdays, holidays, and ‘firsts’ that pile up, all evidenced by text rather than presence. Even geography is against my role as a father, with contact on Father’s Day difficult. We don’t get to spend it together.

Despite a relationship fraught with challenges, it’s equally beautiful, and the small moments give me so much joy. It’s as though the senses are heightened, and regular fatherhood moments are dialed up to 100. The way your child laughs at your dad joke, or says good night. These every day moments take on an elevated meaning when you’re a part time dad.

I don’t have the greatest relationship with my own dad, so it’s sidestepping these mistakes that makes me appreciate the time I have with my own kids. I have missed having a relationship with my dad, a feeling I don’t want to leave my own children with. 

No matter how hard you find the role of being a single dad, the effort always pays hard in the long run. Part-time father comes with a full-time reward.

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