- The tale of the unfortunate flight.
One day, an adventurous man turned up at the airport with his wife and two children. Utilising his job as an employee for a world-leading airliner, he had booked four standby tickets to Florida for a winter break. Sadly, as a result of relaxed rules about taking children on holidays during term time, many of the flights were full and the only way they could get there was to split up. It was decided that his wife would take one of their children on the first available plane, while he would wait with his older child to take the second one.
He said goodbye to his wife and daughter at the check-in desk, and he waited patiently for the next one, entertaining the remaining daughter with his phone, his i-pad, a new book and finally a colouring book.
When finally his place on the next flight was confirmed, the man returned to the desk to check-in his luggage. Upon arrival there, the man was confronted by a request to prove he had permission to take his child out of the country. Confused, the man shook his head. Why would I need permission to take my own child out of the country? Again he was asked to present proof, in the form of a letter, that his daughter’s mother had given signed permission. His daughter watched as authorities questioned his position as her father and legal guardian: the man responsible for bringing her into the world, who had raised her, alongside her mother. Was mummy better than daddy?
When the man asked why his wife had been allowed to take his first daughter from the country without permission, there was no answer to give. There was no answer.
Eventually the man was allowed to take his daughter, who shares his surname and lives in the same home as him, out of the country. His daughter checked-in her luggage and asked her daddy why they didn’t believe him. And the daddy simply didn’t know what to say.
2. The Tale of a School’s Amiss
Every year before Mother’s Day, Jason’s three sons came home from school with a fantastic array of cards for his wife. There were 3D zig zags, glued on flowers from the school field and an unfortunate array of glitter. This year, as Father’s Day approached, Jason found himself imagining what kind of cards they might make him. During his lunch hour and on his way home from work, he felt a spring in his step when he remembered that although his children were too young to buy him anything or take him anywhere, or even really help out well around the house, they’d be saying everything he wanted in the way they designed his card. His sons knew his wife loved the colour yellow, and this was always dominant in her cards. What will they think of for me, he wondered.
And continued to wonder.
Because his boys’ school did not draw attention to father’s day. It’s a bit awkward, perhaps, for those without a dad. A bit unreasonable to expect anything for dads. Dads don’t need celebrating anyway. Everyone knows dads are more detached, less hands on, just not as…involved as mothers. Mother’s Day we’ll celebrate. Father’s Day is just one of those…what are they called? That’s it: after-thoughts.
Celebrate Father’s Day this year. Because Dads Matter.
Have you ever had to experience this hypocrisy? Or know someone who has? What can we do to change society’s perceptions of fathers?
Share your ideas below.