S ome are gruff and distant, some are warm and
touchy-feely. Stories shared by readers in
today’s Lifestyles section are proof that fathers come in all shapes, sizes, colors and temperaments.
The best dads are those offering time and affection, nurturing confidence and independence. The means by which those necessities of life are presented can be as varied as the shape of our fathers. Whatever they look like, however they care for us, today is the day to appreciate fathers from Melrose to Muleshoe.
For some decades in our culture fathers were something of the forgotten factor, as the thoroughly modern among us longed to believe that everything traditional was optional at best.
But recent research shows that involved fathers, perhaps even more than mothers, are key to fending off delinquency, failure in school and a host of childhood problems.
It’s more complicated than in the good old days (which were also more complicated than we sometimes remember).
Today we have divorced fathers, shared-custody fathers, stepfathers, single fathers, even surrogate fathers who step in to offer love and fishing trips to Ute Lake where needed.
All deserve our appreciation today.
There are traditions beyond the barbecue and easy chair that might be worth reviving.
When Father’s Day began, around 1910, Mrs. John B. Dodd (whose widower father raised six children by himself) favored wearing a red rose to honor living fathers, white roses for those who have passed on.
The main thing, if he’s close enough, would be to give him a hug — even if he acts like it embarrasses him.