Fathers distant with their children

   Fathers who do not spend time with their children is a frequent situation : lack of time can be a factor for those who have to work a lot but actually at least on Sundays they could be with their children instead of focusing only on tuning up the car engine or improving the home without the help of their children.
   Their feelings are not an issue : they do love sincerely their children, but  being with them is what they are unable to experience. Could the reason be that when they are with their children they feel a deep sorrow coming back from the time when themselves were children and they missed badly being with their own father ? Having never known what it is to be with one's father and do something together, they may feel unable to simply enjoy being with their children even though it is such a basic part of family life and of life itself that is then missing ?

   Feeling inadequate, clumsy, fear to appear poorly and thus fear of being disregarded by one's own children ? This would be alleviated if those fathers allowed their children to tell what they would like to do and how they would like it to be done. But the fathers then would need to quit their leading position for a moment and accept to follow their children's requests : children can understand that adults have forgotten how to have fun and need children to show them the way.

   What is the most important is being together, and not so much what is done or achieved : the human connection with their father is what children feel a deep need in their heart, and that their father appreciate being with them.

   There are also groups to help fathers be fathers, and it would be most helpful if fathers who tend to be distant with their children could focus on what feelings exactly emerge in themselves when they try to be with their children that deter them from spending time together. If they felt good and at ease, then there would be no problem, children and their fathers would enjoy Sundays together, plus the fathers could help better the mothers with the care of their children.

   To be a close father does not need special skills : it just needs to allow time for that and ask children what they want to do. It does not need to be a brilliant leader, it just needs to accept for a change to be led by one's children and be with them on a person-to-person basis.
   Being closer to each other would lessen the need for control, and children could also take this opportunity to open up about concerns in them so far unknown to their parents : spending time together would improve communications between parents and children for their mutual benefit and happiness.

   But possibly what parents fear the most is loosing control of their children if they become too close to them ? This could be because they never tried to be non-directive with their children : if they did, they could see nothing wrong happens, on contrary children are able to be aware of their parents' needs and to respect them. And using Thomas Gordon's Active Listening would help achieve an open dialog with one's children.
www.gordontraining.com
please see also the book at the Books page.
   Fathers can ask their children to help them be with them, and they can tell their own experience of how it was when they were children with their own father.

   Some children can be desperate for attention from their father : a 4 year-old little girl fell with her child car, causing severe concussion to her head, she was rushed to the emergency room. When told the bad news, her father rushed there too : only in such extreme situation he could show he cared for her and came immediately to be with her. Before that accident, she had said "I am waiting for love". Fortunately she recovered without permanent damage to her brain.

   Expectations toward the father are especially vital for the children when the mother is too limited with affection and care.


rev. 2013
 

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