Once we take full responsibility for articulating our identity with clarity
If “Fathers’ Rights” have become a dirty word, who made that judgment call? The assertion of equality, dignity and worth can NEVER be dirty except by someone who is an oppressor. Equal rights for dads are no different than the claim for equal rights for women, nor the right to human dignity for anyone.
PART FIVE – “Fathers’ Rights” is not a dirty word: Once we take full responsibility for articulating our identity with clarity
If “Fathers’ Rights” have become a dirty word, who made that judgment call?
The assertion of equality, dignity and worth can NEVER be dirty except by someone who is an oppressor.
Equal rights for dads are no different than the claim for equal rights for women, nor the right to human dignity for anyone.
Many civil rights philosophies have been borne out of the struggles of “the oppressed” to realize their ambitions of a better world; often by winning over the oppressor through love, kindness, forgiveness and education.
Those who seek to maintain their “power and control” often label those who seek to exercise equal rights as a “backlash”; and if the oppressed are frustrated and angry, prone to violence or outbursts, often they play into the stereotype the “oppressor” wishes to be the general consensus – the widely held view of the public.
In today’s world, it is a most difficult time for children exposed to the violence of women. And make no mistake, it exists as surely as does the violence of men.
It is not the norm, and their are degrees to violence, but it is never gender specific. Either one’s values are aligned, or have a tendency to be aligned with peace, or violence.
A tendency is often what we find; often situational, possibly cultural, be it the geographic area, religion, family structure we come from and most often reliant on habits formed and solidified over time since birth and reinforced by where we belong to in our immediate world.
If we are ever to have “fathers’ rights” not be a dirty word, we must claim it as our word, instead of the word that has been foisted upon us by others. However, our actions will define its true meaning.
Sometimes, the most appropriate solution for a child is for their dad to have sole custody or primary parent status post separation and divorce. Slowly the face of the family is evolving into this concept. Here’s why:
The fathers of today are “sons of the liberation” – Young boys who have grown up in post feminist politics of the 1970’s. These fathers are only seeking what they have been taught to expect as children – equal rights.
But when one faces systemic bias, bigotry and closed-mindedness born out of intellectual dishonesty, superficial investigation by custody evaluators’ assessors, children’s lawyers, and a general unwillingness to hear evidence by legal professionals, it can be extremely challenging and frustrating.
When a father succumbs to the emotional overwhelm that accompanies those challenges and frustrations, and begins acting irrationally or inappropriately, he is supplying the evidence of parental unfitness. As unfair a standard as it may be that Mom can cry in Court and get sympathy, while who men cry are viewed as weak and possibly unstable, it is a fact of life: Men are expected to be STRONG.
Especially when it comes to their character.
Therefore, in Family Court, Dad must be strong, resolute and like Teflon – nothing bad sticks…. So what is a father to do?
Recognize and act upon the knowledge that with “Rights” come “Obligations” and “Responsibilities”. Especially when children are involved. We adults are their caretakers. Children are a gift from God. They deserve our very best efforts and vigilance at all times. They are our future hope; someday we will come to rely upon them, when we are in the remaining years of our lives.
It is today that we fathers must set the example. This is our generation’s most important challenge, one that will shape that which follows next. Anger at oppression should only be fuel to take positive child-centered action.
Anger is not the destination. Peace is.
We might consider reframing the idea of “Fathers’ Rights” into being equated with the best interests of children, in the same way that motherhood and “women’s rights” have been linked to the rights of children. But to create that “linkage” with honor, integrity and inclusiveness. Respect for a child’s natural heritage – Their Family.
It is time we begin to define ourselves, rather than be labeled and marginalized. But first we must have a process in order to manage the stress that comes with these troubles…
In Part Five, Heidi will begin the exploration with you of our Coaching Program Divorce 101: Your Separation and Divorce Management Plan…Feel free to join the dialogue at http://www.divorceddadweekly.com/ to ask your questions, give me you comments and feedback. Heidi and I welcome every question of every kind for our weekly virtual meeting / telewebcast for dads just like you…