14 Jun Five Ways to be a Superhero Dad
What does it take to be a good father?
We have reached an age where that definition might be a little confusing. With movies like Avengers: Endgame dominating the box office, some fathers might feel the need to aspire to unrealistic superhero qualities.
They want Hulk’s muscles popping out of their clothing. They crave Superman’s X-ray vision, penetrating any kid’s confusing mind. They feel they need some sort of insane intelligence that would make Batman look like a simple-minded preschooler.
Talk about setting yourself up for failure!
A father can be a hero to his children without even wearing a cape. It is the little things a father does—reading, playing ball in the yard, helping with homework—that define his legacy with his children. Let us look at five specific ways that dads can leave a lasting imprint on their children’s lives.
1. Heroic fathers know the meaning of sacrifice. There is nothing better to sacrifice for your children than quality time. Take them out for ice cream. Make the effort to attend their ball games. Put your phone down and read to your children. They may not remember the book you read to them, but they will remember savoring the special treat of being with their dad.
2. Heroic fathers take the time to instill life lessons in their kids. Things like how to properly shake a hand… how to change a flat tire… how to be humble and ask for forgiveness. These are lessons of character that will stick to the soul like peanut butter. They will apply these lessons down the road long after they leave home and find their own way.
3. Heroic fathers know the importance of a story. Make your stories intentional. If your child is struggling with a friend, tell them about the time you had a similar struggle. Read them a story that revolves around the same theme. Don’t be afraid to humble yourself, allowing your child to learn a lesson that you wish you could have taught yourself. You may not have gotten it right, but your son or daughter can!
4. Heroic fathers know how to listen. You may not understand everything going on in your child’s heart, but taking time to listen will show you care. Don’t feel you need to fix every problem they encounter; just be there! If they want advice, they will ask for it. Sometimes all a child needs is the validation of being heard.
5. Heroic fathers show unconditional love. Love can be shown by wrapping your arms around your child when they need a hug, but love can also come the tough way—maybe by taking away their cell phone or screen time. Finding the right compliment of love is never easy, but it will guide children to success. They will remember that love and reciprocate it to others as they grow into adulthood.
So, to all you fathers out there…stop putting pressure on yourself. Take off your cape. Toss the mask aside. You can be a true hero to your children by doing the little things right.
Clint just finished his 16th year of teaching middle school and enjoys co-sponsoring FCA. He works part-time for FCA as an associate for the Olathe huddles and is the proud father of two beautiful boys.