Whether you’re a new dad who can see a bit of himself in one of these types of dads, or a mum who thanks her lucky stars she isn’t married to a 1950s-type dad, you are bound to meet one of these dad-types at some point in your parenting journey.
1. Just-the-stats dad
This dad is really into the stats: what length and weight percentile his baby is in, how many feeds a day his baby is on, how many kilos the baby weighed at the last check-up, head circumference, he’s into it all. The only thing he’s not so into, is any actual hands-on baby work. He’s all about the stats. And telling you about them.
2. Hands-on dad
If this dad could rent a pair of breasts and do the breastfeeding, he’d do it. He’s strapping that baby to his chest, he’s changing nappies with forensic attention to the amount of Curash powder needed for optimum protection and he’s pureeing pumpkin to make sure his gene pool is guaranteed a safe passage into the next generation. He’s all up in parenting’s face!
3. Look-at-the-baby-no-look-at-the-bicep dad
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When this dad posts photos of his baby on social media, he will always be in the photo and conveniently shirtless. If he’s not shirtless, he will hold the baby in such a way that it flexes his biceps to bulging-muscle perfection. Guys! We all know babies aren’t that heavy. You’re just bunging that flex on for the pic.
4. Not-used-to-casuals dad
He’s a little out of his depth so far and the biggest giveaway is that he can’t do casuals. He’s so used to wearing a suit that he can’t nail the ‘running around in the playground’ outfits on weekends. As a first try, he will probably wear a stiff collared shirt – untucked as a nod to the casual element – with the sleeves folded up crisply (never scrunched all the way to the elbow), smart Bermuda shorts and perhaps boat shoes, sans socks. He did not get the memo that parenthood is messy, involves a lot of crawling around in sandpits and results in a lot of body fluids going all over your clothes. While most men immediately revert to dressing like their childhood selves once they have kids – shorts, t-shirt, runners and a cap – this guy doesn’t twig until the second kid comes along.
5. Visible-parenting dad
It’s his day on parenting duty and he wants everyone to know about it. And because he only does it once a week, he’s determined to do it well, damn it! He’s packed up the snacks in separate containers according to food group – dairy, fruit, protein, grains – and he’s studiously interacting with the kids at the playground to ensure that all the tired, jaded mums who do this sh** every day of the week feel vaguely guilty and inadequate.
6. 1950s dad
1950s dad is pretty self explanatory: he thinks it’s still the 1950s and that parenting is ‘secret women’s business.’ Thankfully, I don’t think there are many of these dinosaurs left in the current generation of parents, but occasionally I still witness a man who calls his wife ‘Mummy’ and blithely hands the baby over when it cries or craps its nappy. His excuse is always the same: oh she just does it all so much better than me.
7. Jamie-Oliver dad
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Husbands take note! @idonivron knows what's up❤️just check out that breakfast spread. Hard to believe but my appetite has increased since giving birth to this little ?. Breastfeeding has turned me into a tank?? (I've had bagels with cream cheese, smoked salmon and a croissant almost every morning since giving birth???) Loving our new weekends. ❤️???✨#sohappyrightnow #breakfastinbed
Sometimes it’s hard for men to figure out where they fit into the newborn phase: they can’t breastfeed, the baby seems too fragile to handle and they’re just all at sea as to how they can get involved. Jamie-Oliver Dad has figured out that while he can’t breastfeed the baby, he can feed mum. This guy makes an after-hours career out of preparing elaborate and delicious meals as his contribution to the newborn phase. In an ideal world, he would also clean up the mess, but credit where it’s due, I love this guy.
8. Do-you-want-to-see-a-photo-of-my-baby? dad
Apropos of nothing, this dad will immediately show you a photo of his kid whenever possible. For instance: if you accidentally bumped trolleys in the supermarket queue, his first words will be: “I’ve got a five-month-old baby, isn’t she gorgeous?” And his phone screensaver will be in your eye line before you can say, “Not really, random stranger’s babies don’t interest me.” Because while it’s great that he’s so proud, someone needs to tell him that photos of other people’s babies just look like photos of potatoes with eyes.
9. Kids-as-props single dad
This guy is back on the market and the kids are part of his lady-killing props. Unlike women, who generally keep it on the down-low in certain circumstances if they have kids, men like to shout it from the rooftops. And there is no greater rooftop for men to shout about being a parent than the dating scene. In his mind, it demonstrates what a sensitive, procreator he is. But from a woman’s perspective: I’ve got my own kids why would I want to see and hear about yours all night?
10. Photo-ops dad
This is another variant on the ‘baby as prop’ genre, only this time dad uses baby to stage some ‘hilarious’ pics that he then posts all over social media. Things like: baby with sunglasses on, baby giving camera the middle finger, baby posed with a beer in its hand or baby in danger OH IT’S JUST A JOKE EVERYBODY! (see below)
Oh this parenting thing is so fun when you’re a guy! And while these dads are celebrated all over the media as ‘great dads’ for interacting with their babies, you can pretty much guarantee that they are not doing any real parenting behind the scenes. They’re too busy setting up their photo ops to change a nappy.
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