One thing the pandemic brought into my life that I am grateful and hateful for is TikTok. I’ve acquired a number of cleaning hacks and Bachelor updates that bring a little light into my day-to-day scrolling. TikTok, being the data machine that it is, knows that I am a mom. I am served up all kinds of content around working moms, milestones, and tips about baby products that I have been curious about or should avoid.
What I am not impressed with, as of late, are the videos that are picking on dads. Now, I can make the occasional joke around dads deciding to cut the grass moments before company comes over (this has happened in real life). What I can’t get behind, though, is one video after the other centered around dads not doing their part or being totally aloof to their family’s needs.
Why all the hate?
I see plenty of videos that show a house that is a disaster when Dad is in charge. I have scrolled past a number of accounts that focus on the absurd amount of time dad spends in the bathroom so seeming to avoid their kids.
Moms work hard. This cannot be argued with. But why do we feel the need to discount dads in order for our hard work and sacrifice to be noticed or valued?
Where is the love?
In a world laden with daddy issues, where is the wholesome content that builds them up? Why aren’t we quick to like the video that shows the dad teaching his kid to kick the soccer ball? Why aren’t we showing the dads who hold down the fort while mom is at work? Where are the videos that feature the dads doing Baby Shark Workout with their 2-year old over and over again in the living room (another thing that happened in real life)?
Less eye rolling, more rolling on the floor laughing. Less focus on absent-mindedness, more focus on living in the moment. Let’s just take a break in general from looking at dads as secondary parents for a minute and celebrate their dedication to their kids and their families, even when it’s imperfect.
Here’s to you, Dad.
I want to reiterate that I do have a sense of humor. Dads mess up all the time, but don’t moms, too? Transparency and connectivity in parenting is crucial. I need to know I am not the craziest one out there. I can certainly name a time or two, or ten, where I have had a parenting moment that would get some TikTok laughs (and hate too). However, my hope is that we can look back at these moments for an opportunity to laugh rather than humiliate. In a world under so much parenting scrutiny, let’s maximize the opportunity to build up one another and let the humiliation stay offline. Here’s to all you parents out there doing the best you can – that’s truly all one could ever hope for.