By swan uk member and parent rep for dads - Paul Arvidson
I’m always a bit sketchy about writing anything about this on the basis that every day is ‘International Men’s Day’, but the lovely team at Swan Towers asked me to put in my 2p, so here it is:
It’s not that I don’t think it’s a good idea to have a day, but I think it should be a ‘blokes check your privilege’ day or something.
The thing about being a bloke and doing any parenting at all is that everyone thinks you’re some kind of superhero, instead of it being just day to day like parenting is. And god forbid you should be a special needs parent and a bloke.
But I guess, there’s the challenge, right there. Caring is still seen as a female job, whether they got asked about it or not. And ask first, or rather blokes who didn’t, seem to be hugely in the news.
So, has the time come, finally, for the start of the end for all this stuff? Can we start to let go of our surprise about women who are builders and men who are primary school teachers? ‘You may say I’m a dreamer …’ (no points for obvious quotes), but isn’t that where it starts? Don’t all of us swan parents (of undiagnosed children) want a world where everyone is judged on what they do, who they are, rather than how they present or what other people think of us?
Well, there are thousands of swans and many, many more special needs parents and hands on bloke parents out there.
And that’s a lot of dreaming.
Read my experiences of having a daughter with an undiagnosed genetic condition here.