Author Archives: Darrell - Modern Father Online

When Should We Stop Lying To Our Children?

truth and lies ID-100211556

This coming Thursday at my son’s school they will be having their first ever Father’s Day stall selling gifts for the students to purchase for their dads. I’d like to say that this is because I made it happen when I joined the Parents and Citizens Associations (P&C) earlier this year, but the idea was actually introduced at the last meeting of the previous year when I didn’t have a child in school. But when they asked for a show of hands, I voted for it.

Along with the Father’s Day stall there is also an annual Father’s Day breakfast which is being held before school and before the dads who work have to whisk off to their places of employment. My wife has filled in the form and sent it off to say that I will be attending the breakfast. Awesome. I love getting involved with the things that the kids do.

Last Thursday the kids were reminded in class that the breakfast and stall would be on next Thursday (although my kid got it wrong and kept saying Tuesday). Regardless of his error, I was excited to see him so excited until a little incident played out in the car that caught me by surprise.

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Why Did They Need To Introduce A Girl Owl?

Photo courtesy of ABC.net.au

It’s amazing how two children from the same family can be so different. What’s more amazing is when both children are of the same gender and they display different traits. We have two boys and they are very different in many ways. Sure there are lots of things they have in common, but even though one is a few months short of six and the other other has just turned three, we can see the difference in their respective personalties.

The older one is a sensitive child. Believe it or not, he gets that from his dad. Okay, his mum too, but he definitely shows traits that are pure me and some of his gentle traits are definitely from me. The younger one on the other hand is a rough head. He loves to fight. He loves to get dirty. He would rather be outdoors doing something rather than being holed up inside watching television. He is active.

And even though he shows many more characteristics of being a traditional boy than what his brother does, there is something that he is into that is definitely left field.

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5 Reasons Why Father’s Day Means Getting Ready For Summer

father's day in spring

This time next week it will be the first day of Spring with that season starting on the first day of September. On the first Sunday in September in Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Papau New Guinea we will celebrate Father’s Day. For me, both spring and Father’s Day are seen as preludes to Summer.

Earlier this year I wrote a piece called The 5 Reasons Why Mother’s Day and Father’s Day International Dates Need To Be Aligned which I published on Sunday 15th June which was Father’s Day in most countries around the world (well 76 of them) and obviously it wasn’t here. Australia as well as those other three countries that share Father’s Day with us all celebrate Mother’s Day with the bulk of the world (well as part of 82 countries that celebrate on that day). As I said in my earlier post, I really want Father’s Day to be on the same day all around the world.

If we did change the date of Father’s Day to be aligned to most of the world it would be Australia & Co changing to that third Sunday in June which means we’d be having it in Winter. And I know that I might not ever see the dates align for all those reasons that I gave, so I am going to have to be an optimist here and look at the positives.  So here are five reasons why I like celebrating Father’s Day in Spring;

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The Most Important Thing To Teach Your Children

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Last Sunday we went out for lunch to celebrate my brother’s birthday. In addition to me, my wife and two boys there was my brother and his wife plus his twin son and daughter, our dad and my brother’s parents-in-law.

During lunch we were talking about kids (as we do) and as I occasionally like to do, I asked our eldest who is three months short of turning six questions about when he’s older. On this occasion I asked him how many kids he was going to have when he is a grown up…

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What Is Penis And Vagina?

Penis and Vagina Flikr

In a parenting group that I am a member of on Facebook, this question was posed to the group;

How did you explain the difference between men and women to your child? More specifically if your child notices different private parts because they ran into the bathroom while you were in the shower or going to the restroom. When I was a kid, my parents told me about Adam and Eve. That’s definitely not how I want to go about this subject. My son is only 2 so this is harder than I thought.

How did I answer? Pretty much the same way I always answer this question when posted in online forum or Facebook groups;

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The One Thing All Modern Families Need

Volvo XC60

I met my wife back in August 2007. Of course back then she wasn’t my wife. That would have been weird if we were married before we met, and somewhat impractical as well. We were dating for only two weeks when my boss at the time came to me with the news that the company wasn’t offering company cars with our remuneration packages any more, rather they were offering car allowances suggesting that should look at getting our own novated (personal) leases if the cars were mostly used for work. The best thing about this arrangement was that instead of the company choosing the car that I had to drive, I could choose my own.

In August 2007 I was 33 years old and having been in an on-again off-again relationship that lasted over 12 years that didn’t result in starting a family (including over five of those years being married), I was hoping that my new relationship would turn out to be the one that did produce a family.

So it was, with that directive from my company to go forth and find a new car that I put this question to my girlfriend of only two weeks;

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7 Other Involuntary Reflexes To Bless Other Than Sneezing

Milhouse Simpsons God Bless You Sneezing Bart

In English we say “bless you” or those who want to take it a step further they say “God bless you.” In German they say “Gesundheit” which simply means “health!’ In Croatia they say “Na zdravlje” which means “to your health” and that’s the exact same thing they say in Italian (Salute), Latvian (Uz veselību), Luthuanian (Į sveikatą {pronounced ‘EE sweh kata’}) and Norwegian (Prosit); and they are joined by many other languages who also acknowledge your sneeze with a wish for your good health.

Ever wondered why we say “bless you” when someone sneezes? Back in 590 AD, as the outbreak of the bubonic plague hit Rome, the Pope of the day, Gregory I decided that saying “God bless you” when someone sneezed would ward off the disease. It’s highly dubious, and I would hazard a guess that if someone was to have sneezed back then and still lived, the correlation between wishing them good health through this “mini prayer” and them surviving the plague is spurious reasoning at best.

I’ve always loved Milhouse’s reason as to why we say “God bless you” as he explained to Bart Simpson…

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I Admit That I Cheated, But It Was Worth It

cheating pixabay

For some reason, 2014 has been a year where there have been an abundance of stories about the reasons why women cheat. Whether it’s on those post-internet-explosion news aggregator sites such as The Huffington Post, Mamamia or iVillage sites, or the mainstream print media come internet savvy news outlets, if you go to Google and type in “reasons why women cheat” you will find heaps of stories all from this year.

Many of these media outlets used survey results from some of England and Australia’s top online extra-marital relationship sites who conducted these surveys to find out exactly why their clients are cheating. Not surprisingly, amongst the list of reasons why women cheat is that they feel under-appreciated, neglected or ignored, especially when made to feel more like a housekeeper or nanny than a wife or girlfriend.

And although it’s not like that in my own household, I can understand with all those memes being shared like the ones I mentioned in my most popular post Dear Mums, Please Talk to Your Husbands that there is still many households where the mothers feel under-appreciated for all the jobs they do that go unnoticed. In my own household I do most of the laundry (sorting out, putting it on, hanging it out, bringing it in) although the folding and putting away part is a joint effort. I do many of the roles involved with raising the kids. And something that has been my job since I first moved in with my wife (then girlfriend) is the cooking.

In the evening our house can be busier than Time Square during peak hour. Most nights my wife assists our eldest with his homework while she multi-tasks as she takes calls from her patients confirming appointments or checking on or placing orders for products they need; all whilst trying to entertain our youngest. Sometimes she is in her upstairs office doing research when I finish cooking the dinner and am serving it out, and although I call out to her she often ignores me or keeps telling me she’ll be there soon. It frustrates me that I have “slaved over a hot stove” and yet my family is not waiting at the table to eat the fruits (or vegetables and meat) of my labour.

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Seven Reasons I Know Child Abuse Is Wrong

youtube luka suzanne vega

Recently I had a conversation with two Christian ministers in a relatively small country town with a population less than 6,000 residents. They were very friendly fellows and I have nothing against them personally, but after finding out that they were talking to an Atheist they started down that old path of questioning my morals, and with the absence of God and Jesus in my life, where did I get my morals from?

I didn’t really want to get into any debate because I’m over it most of the time, but they kept at it it during our conversation (full points to them for trying their best to convert me) and so I had to, well, defend my position because there’s always something in that whole “I believe in God and the Bible so my morals are much better than yours” argument that I take personally. Maybe personally is not the right word because the topic is that of child abuse.

I need you to know that my opinion about child molestation does not come from me ever being a victim of it. Furthermore, I was not subjected to beatings or verbal abuse at the hands of my parents.

So I threw this line at the gentlemen who were questioning my moral fibre;

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How To Freak Out Secular Parents

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At dinner we sit around the table talking about three things that happened to each of us in our day focusing on positive experiences. We’ve been doing something similar but non structured for a while but we recently had a friend and her kids over for dinner and she asked if they could do their ritual which was tell everyone a bad thing that happened, and then one good thing. Her son preferred just to say good things, which is fine by me and also my wife, so we then adopted the three good things policy and it’s been in place for just on two weeks tonight.

Master Five got to go first today (like most days) and went through his list of good things that happened. He told us the three friends who he plays with almost everyday played nicely with him again today; four school buddies all together playing in harmony. All three boys that he mentioned are in his class and it stands to reason that he would become close with other kids from the group he spends most of the day with.

But having learned some news today whilst picking him up from school, I thought I would ask about another boy he knows from another class in his year…

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