We’re getting into the minds of the Top Five Dads. Their entries rose to the top of an elite group and so the Mentally Sexy staff and judges thought it’d be a great idea to learn a little bit more about them. Today Jeff responds to their questions.
Damon Young: How have you failed as a parent?
Well I feel like I fail all the time. I think there is probably as much father guilt as there is mother guilt. I tend to be pretty soft on the discipline, preferring to let the kids get away with anything & make mess along the way but then get pretty impatient when I’ve let it all go too far. My wife tends to operate somewhere in the middle so I like to hand over the disciplining to her to deal with. She’s better at it. I’m either fun & entertaining or a grumpy bum.
Paul Gooden: Who is your favorite Wiggle and why? You must name the Wiggle and color.
Anthony the blue wiggle because he always makes the concerts more entertaining for the adults. Humour the kids just wouldn’t get. We’ve been to several Wiggles concerts now & he makes the experience more worthwhile.
Maureen Matthews: Do you feel equally confident parenting boys and girls?
After 4 girls and now with a 15month old boy who is into everything, wants to sit on our hips constantly or climb & destroy – I don’t’ feel like I have a grasp on any of it. Looking back, newborns were somehow easier. If the kids are happy & I can entertain then its all good, boys, girls, doesn’t matter. I think I may well move out of home for a while when my 4 girls aged 3-6 currently, hit the teenage years. I am not sure I will cope with any of it! Perhaps by then my boy & I can spend our time watching sport and leave the girls with my wife to deal with.
Kate Hunter: Do you ever wish you were a father in an earlier generation? Which one and why?
Haven’t thought about it really. So few spare minutes of thinking time around here so I guess I am happy where I am right now.
Steve Biddulph: What is the biggest satisfaction you get from being a father?
Watching all the firsts, the birth, the first smile, crawling, walking, writing their name, starting school, learning to jump rope, ride a bike….. All special to me and you kinda think, wow I made that person!
Jack Ellis: How does your parenting compare with the parenting you received?
I am one of 10 and my parents had a lot more patience than I do. My dad is a good role model for me & I try to do my best to be more like him.
Dan Barron: Is there anything that you think the Government, or employers, could be doing to encourage other fathers to take a more active role in household chores, and the direct care of their children, like the Mentally Sexy dads do?
Access to longer paid time at home when babies are first born is always nice. We’ve always tried to accumulate work holidays around the time of the births so we’ve been ok.
Promoting hands on dad culture & talking more about division of duties is probably a good idea. Especially when so many mums are working now, the dads have to help more with kids or the house or pretty quickly the house ends up a mess.
Not a musical bone in my body so wouldn’t have a clue.
(Jeff, you seem like a Together Forever kind of guy – RD)