Fathers Are More Present, But…

Father and baby

A recent article from the Guardian newspaper starts with a statement that captures the very essence of what Father Lessons is about:

Like many men of my generation, I wanted to be a more present father than my own had been.

Jeremy Davies

The writer talks about how, as a journalist, he was able to be a stay-at-home dad when his son was born some 20 years ago, but points out that he was very much the exception at the time in the UK. As a self-employed online business owner in Tokyo, I had that same opportunity and was pretty much the only father dropping off and picking up from daycare.

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Mates – who needs them?

Mates enjoy a beer

In a recent issue of the Guardian an article appeared with this tagline:

“Some things get easier with age. The intensity of my friendships and the emotionally sharing nature of them has deepened.”

If only that were true for all men. Particularly when we get into middle age and the balance of life starts to shift from infinite potential and novelty to mortality and loss, that’s when close friendships become all the more important. But sadly, as the article goes on to explain, male friendships tend to dwindle in number as we age and often don’t involve that kind of emotional sharing.

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Two Years, Too Long

Trealy Farm pool
The outdoor pool at Trealy Farm in Wales.

Wow, it’s been almost two years since I last updated this blog. You may have assumed it was dead in the water.

They’ve been two very interesting, challenging, rewarding years that have seen me develop and grow in ways that I hope will help me make Father Lessons a more mature and focused project.

During those two years, I’ve never thought of Father Lessons as ‘dead’, simply as dormant while I figure out what direction I want to go with it. I thought I knew when I started, but a lot of subconscious resistance as well as conscious doubts led to me being unsure. And rather than stumble on blindly, trusting that things would become clear, I decided to back off.

But I haven’t been idle.

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Manstock 2020

Manstock 2020

Anyone up to date on this blog will know that I belong to a regular men’s group. We usually meet up once every other week in north London, but since the lockdown started we’ve been meeting up on Zoom on a varying schedule. The group is actually one of three run by the same therapist, Jerry Hyde, and once a year all three groups gather for what is lovingly called “Manstock”.

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