voiceBoks® - The Voice of Parenthood
equality for dads

Why Every Day Should Be Father’s Day

So, I was going to write a piece for Father’s Day but then I thought – wait – this thing is bigger than Father’s Day!

As in … a lot bigger.

Single families have grown significantly over the years. Divorce and separation stats are higher than they’ve ever been. With more moms going back to work and dads staying home to care for the kids, what do you label as a “norm?” Dads are becoming more involved and their fatherhood roles are more noticeable than ever!

Equality in Parenthood

A lot of single parents are fathers (ok, probably not quite half of the single parent population out there, but certainly a lot). And a lot of divorced and separated dads have custody – be it joint or sole.

Fathers’ rights are a real issue and things like paternity leave and fatherhood are finally getting the recognition they deserve. Parenting does not equal mothering. Women do not, and should not have the monopoly here.  Otherwise, how can we preach and  teach equality?

How many men are signed up to this site? If you’re a dad please say ‘Hey’ in the comments below – I’d love to hear!

How Many Parenting Sites for Dads Can You Name?

All of these sites describe themselves as parenting sites. But if I were a father, would I go there? Would you?

In Ireland where I live, the parenting sites and resources are almost exclusively targeted towards mothers. This is either obvious –  “Mummypages.ie”, “Herfamily.ie”, or “eumom.ie” – or subtle – in that when you click through it’s quite an ordeal to get to a mention of men’s health, mental health or fatherhood.  All of these sites describe themselves as parenting sites. But if I were a father, would I go there? Would you?

In truth, this is one of the reasons I enjoy writing for this site. The Voice of Parenthood is a great tagline. And I want to engage with parents, not just mothers. Ideally yes, parenting a two person job. Not because gender, but because it’s such a hard job, with so much responsibility and crazy! But one healthy parent is enough. It really is. The results are in, science agrees.

And if you are that parent, and you are a father, you’ll have just celebrated Father’s Day! I hope you had a good one!

The thing is, every day is Father’s Day if you are one – and of course if you have one.

Our fathers, their presence and their absence, impact us hugely. Our fathers influence how we see ourselves and how we relate to each other.

What Was Your Own Father Like?

It’s such a big, emotionally laden, and a possibly judgmental question. Yet it’s a question worth asking. Give it a few moments. In there we will all likely find answers about our own behaviors, our choices of friend, of partner, regardless of our gender or sexuality.

Was (is) your father present? Emotionally open? Caring? Warm? Cold? Absent? Honest? Cruel? How did he treat your mother, his friends, his boss, his employees – you?

What Kind of Influence Did Your Father Have on You? Emotionally? Unconsciously?

Everything our fathers did (and didn’t do) contributed (or took from) towards our development as people, friends, partners and parents. Not exclusively of course! Other things (and people) influence us too.

In many ways our world is in a state of crisis.


#consent  – change is afoot, that’s for sure! We are rightfully rethinking our value as women, how we allow ourselves to be treated, how to give voice to ourselves and our daughters. How we teach our sons to be good men.

And fathers have an (understated) opportunity to influence how we as a society turn out, what we’ll do next.

Like how we’ll treat our girls and women, what expectations we’ll have of our boys and men.

What kind of people do you want your children to be – and be with?

These are also very big questions – but certainly worth asking!

If you’re a dad, you are influencing your child/children right now, just as your dad influenced you, regardless of where he was. You’re doing that even though you didn’t decide to do that when you woke up this morning, even though you’re not doing it consciously.  I think this is an amazingly good thing, and it can be hugely positive – fathers really can help shape our future!

A though to dads , not just on Father’s Day, but every day. Every, single, day:

parenting equality

Sally O'Reilly

Sally O'Reilly

Sally O’Reilly is an IAHIP, ICP and EAP accredited Counselling Psychologist, Psychotherapist and Clinical Supervisor with nearly twenty years of professional experience. Her particular area of expertise and interest is work with teenagers. She enjoys a busy full-time private practice and has developed and facilitated a personal development, substance misuse and sexual health programme for teenagers for over 15 years. She is a regular contributor to national print and radio media.
Sally is also the co-author of Two Wise Chicks.
Feel free to follow Sally on: Facebook | Twitter | Linkedin

14 comments

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  • Really interesting article about parenting . I think every day should be celebrated as parents day instead of having particular day for each of them

  • Aw! Such sweet sentiments. Dads are so important in raising and nurturing, and they do need kudos and encouragement, too. Thanks for the reminder!! 🙂

    • Hi Jennifer, yes. We all influence children in so many ways – moms don’t have the monopoly that’s for sure 🙂 Thanks so much for reading and commenting, warmly, Sally

    • Hi Amelia, agreed – and it’s so nice to see everyone’s responses here – we’re certainly progressing as a society. Good times ahead! Thank you for reading and have a lovely day, Sally

  • Dads are just as important as moms if you ask me. I agree that there aren’t many sites for dads out there, which is not right. I look at myself and my son and see the importance of having that father figure, role model and I wish and hope that every child has that. I agree, everyday should be father’s day (and mother’s day too)

  • I love this! I had a stay-at-home mom so she definitely hung out with me more when I was little, but my dad and I often went on outings just the 2 of us. It’s great to have both parents active in a kid’s life.

    • Hi Ann – what lovely memories and how lovely that they stand out for you as important! I do hope some dads read this piece ! Thank you for sharing the memory and for reading too, warmly, Sally

  • This post just warmed my heart! There is nothing more special and beautiful than parenthood and it’s the most precious thing when we honor what mothers and fathers do so well on a everyday basis. My father and I aren’t as close as I would like but I’m super grateful for him everyday!

About Author

Sally O'Reilly

Sally O'Reilly

Sally O’Reilly is an IAHIP, ICP and EAP accredited Counselling Psychologist, Psychotherapist and Clinical Supervisor with nearly twenty years of professional experience. Her particular area of expertise and interest is work with teenagers. She enjoys a busy full-time private practice and has developed and facilitated a personal development, substance misuse and sexual health programme for teenagers for over 15 years. She is a regular contributor to national print and radio media.
Sally is also the co-author of Two Wise Chicks.
Feel free to follow Sally on: Facebook | Twitter | Linkedin