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Some may argue that Egyptian fathers are not involved in their children’s lives. Many in our society may believe that raising kids is the sole responsibility of the mother and the father simply supports financially. Although most mothers work nowadays, couples might not share the kids’ responsibility. However, it could add to the mother’s burden without the partner’s support. It’s getting worse with time due to the social pressure and financial constraints. Even if dads want to partake in raising the children, the hectic lifestyle might make it challenging.
Positive parenting tips are all over social media but are usually directed to mothers only. It’s rare to find a dad attending a parenting workshop or helping with homework. This widens the gap between fathers and mothers and results in many parenting conflicts.
This encouraged Mina Thabet, a certified parenting coach and a father, to start his fatherhood blog, Fathership. We interviewed Mina to tell us more about the blog and his dream to change the fatherhood stereotype in the Egyptian community.
“I’ve been dealing with teenagers and parents for more than 12 years during my voluntary work. I felt fathers were not involved enough in their children’s lives,” Mina explained. “There are only a few programs and content portals dedicated to fathers to help them in their journey. That’s why I decided to initiate my fatherhood blog to spread awareness.”
A daughter’s first love and a son’s first best friend
Thabet believes that most teens’ problems stem from their relationships with their fathers. He pointed out the importance of a father’s support during this crucial stage. The parenting coach further explained that the teenage years are when the identity development takes place. These years are some of the most critical psychological development stages during which fathers’ presence is essential.
We asked Thabet what he would tell parents on behalf of teenagers. “Please understand my needs, be my friend and role model, not my boss. Give me space to learn through my mistakes,” he answered.
Thabet’s true daddy face
The parenting blogger believes that leading by example is the best way to make a change and he has to start by himself. Thabet is involved in all of his children’s needs like feeding, changing diapers, and bedtime routine, and always tries to validate his kids’ feelings. “I admit that sometimes I fail to deal with their unreasonable tantrums especially when I’m exhausted,” he confessed
You can learn from your kids
“My son once told me that he gets scared when I yell at him and from that moment on I decided to do my best to control my emotions,” he clarified. “I always try to put myself in their shoes and see things from their perspectives so we solve the situation together.”
Thabet ended our talk with a final advice for fathers. “Your children need you more than they need a certain standard of living. If you have to choose between spending more time with your kids or making more money, please choose time.”
Further reading: An Open Letter to Fathers: Dear Dads, We Need You