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I know why THIS PHOTO made mums so angry

Why did the Internet explode with hate about this man doing his daughter’s hair?  A Daddy explains…

You might have seen this picture this week. It’s of Doyin Richards (a.k.a. daddy blogger Daddy Doin’ Work). And he’s doing his daughter’s hair.

Outrageous? Apparently.

Now, all he and I and the other 560 Dad Bloggers I know are trying to do is promote the idea that there should be more suitable prefixes to the words “dad” and “father” than “dead-beat” and “absent”.

How about “proactive,” “awesome,” and “world’s best…” (without the latter being an insincere slogan on a coffee mug you buy for your dad because you couldn’t be bothered thinking about what he’d really like or deserve).  And this photo is highlighting that dads CAN multitask just as well as mothers.

But this is what Doyin said about the storm that followed this photo going viral:

Here’s a sampling of some of the private messages and comments I received from them after I posted this picture:

– “He probably rented those kids. They don’t even look like him.”

– “I would bet anything that you’re a deadbeat.”

– “OK buddy, cute picture. Now why don’t you hand the children back to their mom so you can go back to selling drugs or your bootleg rap CDs?”

– “So do you do this for all of your illegitimate kids?”

When you’re a blogger and you put yourself out there, it is inevitable that you are going to get negative comments by trolls and haters. That’s the first thing they teach you in Blogger School*: be thick skinned or get out. I know on my own site I have had negative comments about my opinions on parenting  and just yesterday I was accused of having a ‘hateful agenda’.

Do I have an agenda? Yes. Is it hateful? No, not by any means, but I can see why we get under people’s skins. And by people, I mostly mean mothers, but we can piss off other fathers at times too, especially those who Doyin pointed out claim that we are making them look bad. Pffft. Take it away, Doyin:

Memo to the small pocket of male haters I have: Why don’t you put big boy shorts on and get in on the revolution of good fathers? It’s not a good look to tear down dads for doing the work your wives wished you were man enough to do on your own. If you don’t believe me, just ask your spouses. They’ll tell you.

But don’t worry. I’ll still be here whenever you’re ready to step your game up and join #TeamGrownAssMan.

Again, to the amazing fathers out there reading this (which happens to be the overwhelming majority)—much love to you guys. I appreciate you. Your spouses appreciate you. And most importantly—your kids appreciate you.

I read comments from people who believe that it’s possible that Doyin may have set this picture up and that someone might be taking this photo. Now I will be honest with you, when I saw the photo I thought that too. So what? That’s not the point. What Doyin is doin’ (sic) by sharing photos like this, by blogging about being a proactive father, and by taking the time off work to spend with his kids and telling the world about it is A GOOD THING. No wait; A. GREAT. THING.

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The fact that Mr Richards is a black man who is borrowing the “I have a dream” preamble throughout his blog post is not a big deal, and I’m sure would be welcomed by the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jnr. And I hope that Dr King pardons me for being middle-class and white and borrowing it too but…

I have a dream that one day there will be no need for Dad Bloggers with agendas like mine and Doyin’s. I have a dream that we aren’t made to feel unwanted in parents’ rooms in shopping centres. I have a dream that marketing companies don’t just advertise with slogans such as “because mums know best…” and that “this healthy snack for kids has ingredients approved by mothers” when many dads like me do their equal share of the grocery shopping.

The dream of many proactive dads is much like those that many women are fighting for; equality. We WANT you to get equal pay so more of us can choose to be stay at home dads. We NEED you to get equal pay so that when times are tough, when companies lay off workers, suicide doesn’t seem like a solution for a father who thinks he’s failed his family.

Until then, all we can do is dream…

* Blogger school might not actually exist

What do you think about Doyin sharing the picture of him at work? Do you think men can multitask as well as women?

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