NES Controller

Old School NES Games That Prepared Me for Fatherhood

Fathers pull their inspiration from weird places. Some of them pull it out of their own father’s teachings. Some of them pull it out of necessity and learn on the fly. But what indisputably prepares you for fatherhood the most is video games. Old NES games, specifically. Look, that console had two... 
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Some things are too good (or too bad) to keep around forever. This is especially true in the world of junk food, where brands constantly crank out products based on market trends and flimsy pop culture references. My son will never eat some of the junk food I had when I was younger. I certainly won’t... 
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25 Reasons Kids Should Be Left Alone With Their Dads

Making fun of dads because they are “pretty much just giant children” is soooooooo 2011. Maybe y’all ain’t heard, but dads are getting all sorts of respect lately – not because they’re doing anything different, but because - ugh - who didn’t want to loosen... 
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9 Tips for Taking Your Kid to Their First Comic-Con

I am a comic book geek and so is my seven-year-old daughter. Before we start pointing fingers, let me just say that I blame myself for her condition. When you raise a child in a house filled with comic books, where the living room bookcase has Two-Face book-ends and your art supplies are kept in Hellboy... 
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Observations on Dad-Bias in 140 Commercials from 2013

I’ve been calling out dad-bias in commercials for years now, and really wanted to put the nail in the coffin. So I watched, noted and rated 140 commercials in 2013 that featured fathers as main characters. And if I was looking for a fight…man, I couldn’t have done it at a worse time.... 
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Here’s another from our backlog of pre-Father’s Day stuff: Lisa Belkin refuses to let fathers have a celebratory week. The writer behind the New York Times‘ “Motherlode” blog, which we’ve been pissed about before, dropped a backhanded compliment to fathers just before our big day – we’re more “active”…but more absent.

C’monnnn. It was Father’s Day, dude!

The worst misnomer is in the title. Though Belkin talks for almost the entire article about how great fathers are (thank you!) and how many strides we’ve taken to be with our families, the closer is probably the more interesting nugget of the article. Somehow, I just know Belkin wanted to bury this one as far down as she could and then run fast and hard once she said it: African American fathers are twice as likely as white fathers to “live apart from their children.” Oh snap!

So, while the whole article really drives home that fathers are working hard to be with families – this little race-based nugget at the end jumps on what Belkin’s trying to get at.

The best part is the complete dismissal of the fact, as Belkin goes back to the happier points of the Pew Research she quoted the African American absence fact from. Belkin jumps back to “Other data points from Pew,” including “63 percent say being a dad is harder today than it was a generation ago.”

So, all-in-all, this was a positive-enough article that just didn’t delve into the more interesting bit that Belkin was dying to drop and run.

New York Times

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You might know Michael Boatman from such television shows as “China Beach,” “The Good Wife” and “Gossip Girl.”

Oh wait, fatherhood website…got it.

You might know Michael Boatman from such television shows as “Spin City,” “Arli$$” and “Law & Order: SVU.” He’s a father, and recently, motherhood-site-masquerading-as-parenthood-site ParentDish put up an editorial from him for Father’s Day. We’re covering this as part of our “Post Father’s Day Extraveganza,” which will stretch into, god knows, tomorrow or Wednesday. Basically, so much Father’s Day stuff came out while we were busy with our families that we couldn’t hope to get it to you in time. So, we didn’t.

Anywho, Michael Boatman’s little editorial is a nice reminder that celebrity fathers are real fathers too. We like to imagine that movie and television stars all have assistants and nannies, so it’s good for us to hear about real celebrity parenting like this. Michael Boatman also had a father that walked out on his family, so it’s been important for him to be there for his kids.

Boatman’s got a little something to say to fathers that walk out on their families as well. “I think of the fathers who go off to find some imaginary better life, and all the tragedy that leaving causes,” he says. “They’ll never know the joys, the laughter, the adventures that only come with time spent loving and raising your children.”

Sauce: ParentDish

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We skipped this one last week but knew that somehow, we’d have to come back to it: the quality of a father’s parenting will have an effect on a daughter’s sex life.

Bruce J. Ellis and company threw down a study that included 59 pairs of sisters in divorce-affected families and 42 pairs from “intact” families. Ellis found that while just living with a father didn’t have an effect on the daughter’s sexual activity (see last paragraph for a caveat), he found that fathers doling-out “high-quality” parenting greatly reduced the likelihood of risky sexual behavior. Poor parenting on the father’s part, however, increased the likelihood of such activity – things like sex without a condom, teenage sex and intoxicated sex.

I won’t question exactly how Dr. Ellis figured out these girls would or did have drunk, condomless sex before the age of 19. I’m assuming that’s just another thing doctors do. And I’m glad I have a son.

Also, if you’re not a numbers-kind-of-guy, you know we’ve mentioned before that nearly every chick that’s been featured on MTV’s “16 & Pregnant” has had an absent father. Though Ellis’ current study doesn’t support the “father’s here, you’re in the clear” outcome, Ellis actually did another study in 2003 that concluded that teens without fathers were twice as likely to engage in early sexual activity and seven times more likely to get pregnant as an adolescent. SEVEN. Facts on that can be found at the National Fatherhood Initiative‘s site.

So now that we’ve got facts, can we vote to have Dr. Ellis leave these teen girls alone?!

US News

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My dad listened to the Eagles. I listen to Dr. Dre…is that on there somewhere?

They also forgot: If your dad listened to Pink Floyd, you probably listen to…Pink Floyd.

Sonos

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Are you two daddies?

As a developmental psychologist, I spend a lot of time chatting with kids. I was talking to four-year-old girl recently and the name “David” entered our conversation. Here is a short transcript of the conversation that followed:

Girl: My daddy’s name is David!

Me: Really?!? That’s great. You know what…my little boy’s name is David too!

Girl: You have a baby?

Me: Yes.

Girl: Can he walk?

Me: No.

Girl: Does he sleep in a crib?

Me: Yes.

Girl: Are you two daddies?

Up until this point, this conversation was pretty standard stuff, but this question stumped me. After a few minutes of question and answer, I figured out that the little girl had seen me working alongside my research assistant (a twenty-something young man), and she was either asking me if I was gay or if he was my partner in raising my son. Whatever her motivation for asking if I was “two daddies,” I was pleasantly surprised that such a young girl had been exposed to the wide variety of ideas about what constitutes a family.

If you want your child to be as awesome as this little girl, or if you own family is a little different in some way, I want to recommend Tom Parr’s books. Three of his books are particularly good. It’s OK to be Different is about accepting the many ways that people are different. If you’re an average family, a mixed race family, a mixed religion family, or if you’re two daddies (or two mommies), check out The Family Book. Finally, Parr’s book on adoption, We Belong Together, is an awesome way to talk to an adopted child about their place in your family.

Sauce: Todd Parr

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Happy Father’s Day from 8BitDad!

Every year, right about this time, the coffee tastes better, the internet seems faster, and sun seems warmer. That’s right, dudes, it’s Father’s Day.

Enjoy today with your families (like you need us to tell you that), and we’ll catch you back here tomorrow with more awesome news about fatherhood. 8BitDad is 10 months old, and we hope we’ve given you 10 months of something you can’t find anywhere else on the internet: fatherhood news and editorials that you actually care about!

 

Happy Father’s Day from all of us at 8BitDad!

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SI.com writer Jeff Pearlman has a really tough job. He’s a writer for Sports Illustrated, a contributor for CNN, a work-at-home-dad, and he’s the only, that’s right, ONLY father that’s taking care of children.

At least, according to his piece on CNN: “A Father’s Day Wish: Dads, Wake the Hell Up!”

Everything from this guy’s holier-than-thou tone to his smirky picture sings man-hate.

I mean, really – this guy actually starts one of his paragraphs out with “I envy you, but I sort of pity you.” Oh, well thank you, I think!

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Hey, are you basically boned because you haven’t put together any neat little handicraft cards together with the kids for Father’s Day? Do you honestly see yourself getting down to Walgreens anytime soon to correct that?

I didn’t think so. So check out these rad little “cuff cards” from a Bonkers About Buttons Facebook site. I guarantee that you can find some colored paper somewhere, and if you’re looking for the buttons to do the craft, just rip some off of one of your dad’s shirts and destroy it! Then you’ll know what to get dad next year for Father’s Day.

Quick disclaimer before the sauce: we aren’t endorsing that father’s make their own handicraft cards, not that they mutilate their own shirts. We just know that there are non-dads out there who read this site; mostly mom-bloggers spying on us, but whatevs.

Bonkers About Buttons (Facebook)

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