LightStream Productions

Rhia’s Corner

                             June 2005

By Rhiannon Waits

The month of June brings many thoughts to mind with Fathers Day among them. That wonderful day that the baby boomers honor the man who had loved and supported them all their life. The fathers we remember having, as children are extinct yet still ever present in our minds.

The majorities have the magnificent memories of his bits of wisdom he would impart or the spankings he doled out if you misbehaved.  Most of us were left in awe of his abilities. Some of us feel the spankings assisted us in becoming conscientious human beings; others felt abused by this act. Not many baby boomers have managed to squeak by as a child without hearing the words "Just wait until your father gets home".

Today, a man who is strong enough to build a home yet gentle enough to wipe away a baby's tear is almost extinct. It is not uncommon to have the father in another home raising an entirely different family. In many cases, they abandon the child in person, in heart and monetary presence. The man who pays his support and stays in the child's life has become a rare breed. He is to be treasured and much admired for his integrity.

In the United States alone, an estimated 150 BILLION in child support remains unpaid! It is not uncommon to find the familiar scenario of the single mom working two jobs to raise the children.  In this setting, the child stays at home on a video game while the mother works, the dad skips visitation or the mother withholds it. The video game at this point fills the void of the missing dad. It teaches violence and removes the child from this world into one of fantasy. What a sad state of affairs this is.

It takes a great deal more to be a dad than to just participate in the creation of another being. You must have a strong heart and use it to show your love at any given time. You must be strong of will so you can stand up and be what your child needs in their lives. You must realize that you have to always be their parent and put being their "buddy" in second place. Sometimes it is allowing your child to make mistakes and being there for when the tears come to offer a shoulder. It means staying in their life for the good and the bad.  You can't enter their life 20 years later and expect to make up for the absence in their life.

We have stood by entirely too long and watched silently as daddy's shirk their duties to their children. As we allow them to do so, our children have become more resentful and violent. We have lowered the age of prosecution for minors committing crimes but not intensified the punishment for abandoning a child.

I hope that everyone takes the time to wish the real fathers a Happy Fathers Day this year. The dads who stand by their children, support their children, and love their children need to be recognized for truly being a decent man. Encourage mothers who have withheld visitation from the fathers with insufficient cause – to permit them visitation with their children. This June, find a true good dad, and tell him how wonderful he is. Mothers, help your children celebrate having a good dad even if they are not in the home.

There are many wonderful fathers out there. Do all you can do to help show appreciation to those wonderful over worked and under appreciated daddy's.  Do not allow them to be short changed for the actions of others. May all the blessings of love and respect flow from your children. I appreciate your ability to not only love your children but your stepchildren as well. To the other dads who adopted the "have em and leave em" attitude Karma works. You may not find Karma in a bar, but she will be one date you will not forget.

You must be the change you want to see in the world.  -Mahatma Gandhi
A man's character is his fate. -Heraclitus

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