Father’s Day for the Fatherless
Updated: Jul 8, 2020
I’ve been seeing a lot of posts about Father’s Day which is wonderful! But what about those children who don’t have a father? Or maybe never had a father? These are the late night thoughts I’ve been having. Our boys were blessed with wonderful loving grandparents and DIYing gifts for them will be a ton of fun! But what about those kids that don’t have a grandfather, uncle or male figure to take on that role? As kids, these holidays can make us feel singled out or left out of the fun. So, what do we do?
Me personally, I always loved celebrating Fathers Day with my dad. I remember spending hours making pop-up cards or DIYing a soda bottle with masking tape and shoe polish to create an antique vase. 😅 Hey, It seemed like such a cool idea at the time!😂.
I often wonder if our boys will miss out on those special times. But I have to wholeheartedly believe we will teach our boys that you choose your family and that love really is all you need.
For those who are fatherless this Father’s Day, or have children who are fatherless, here are some tips to make it through the holiday. We completely understand that each situation is different and tried to hit on various types of situations. Please feel free to take what hits home for you and your situation and leave the rest.
• An Absent Father - Never bad mouth a child’s father. Sometimes, we assume it will make children feel better to tell them, “You’re better off without your dad in your life,” or to list his many wrongs, perhaps because he’s in jail or he abandoned the family or doesn’t pay child support or doesn't call as often as he should. But even if these things are true, talking bad about a child’s father only causes further hurt for the child. No matter what a father may or may not have done, it doesn’t change the fact that the child has suffered.
• Father Loss - Acknowledging the loss of a father and giving children the freedom to express it is so important. Phrases such as “You’ve always lived without your dad, so what’s different about today?” , “You are way better off with your mom.” or, the most painful of all: “You know, you do have a dad,” referring to a step-father may have well intentions, but can be so hurtful. It sends the message that the sadness the child feels is not legitimate and that child’s father (in essence) was replaceable. Try saying “I know you are missing your father today. And I am so sorry you are sad.” It may be hard to hear it, but it’s important to make sure children know that they can talk openly about missing their dads. Reassure them that they don’t need to worry about hurting any adult’s feelings.
• Call Your Mom - We know that this Fatherless Father’s Day can effect anyone of any age. There’s nothing like calling mom and saying thank you. Celebrate the day with her and show her how special she is to be your mother and your father.
• Celebrate the father figure in your child’s life - If you have an uncle, grandpa, friend, cousin or whatever, this would be the perfect time for your kiddos to spend that special day with them. This year our kids will be celebrating with grandpa and I know it will be a blast! In the future, I’m hoping that the arts and crafts side of Father’s Day in school will be geared towards those strong male figures in their life or towards us as their mother.
• Single Mom - Take some time and practice self care. Get lost in a book, have a glass of wine and enjoy a bubble bath. Go get A mani pedi, stop at Starbucks and really treat yo’self. You freaking deserve it! Celebrate the wonderful mother AND father you are! It’s like a double Mother’s Day and we ALL know you deserve all the praise, support and celebration you can get!
• Open Communication - Allow your kids to be sad or disappointed. Let them express their feelings and make sure they feel loved and supported. This would be a good day to do fun things and make special memories! “I know you miss your dad bud. I wish I could change things for you. I just want you to know that I will always be here to love and support you”.
• Teach Diversity - This is a great time to talk about alllllllll the different kinds of families. “Some families only have a mom. Some families have two moms. Some families only have a dad. Some families have two dad.” You get the picture. Teaching kids family diversity can really help not only on holidays like this one, but can also teach acceptance.
Most importantly we hope you have the happiest Father’s Day whether you’re celebrating with dad or not. 💖