Category: communication

Bill Cosby gives funny, yet wonderful insight on Parenting as a Father. Here, Bill describes the frustrations of a father and adds a bit of humor to it.

As a parent, learning to lead with authority can be ideal if done respectfully, and holding the child or youth up in honor of who they are as a person. A parent must have strong refusal skills and the child adjusts and adapts  in response when the parent is able to communicate effectively and respectively.

By Leslie M. Gordon and William K. Middlebrooks, Essence Magazine.

Robin Roberts and Dad

This excerpts from Dare To Be Extraordinary: A Collection of Positive Life Lessons from African American Fathers are taken from the chapter on ABC Broadcaster and Good Morning America host, Robin Roberts.

Robin Roberts brings joy, honesty, and news to millions of loyal Good Morning America viewers each day. When she laughs, we laugh. When she cries, we cry. People are naturally drawn to her just as they were drawn to her loving father, Colonel Lawrence Edward Roberts, a man she describes as a true officer and a gentleman…

In Roberts’ eyes, her father was a gentle giant. He was compassionate and although he had a straight-laced, buttoned up persona, and a deep voice, there was a real softness to him.…

Roberts loved to answer the telephone: “Colonel Roberts’ quarters, Robin speaking.” Her father would just look at her as if to say, “Oh my gosh, what have I raised?” …When the future broadcaster was ten years old, her family lived on Keesler Air Force base in Biloxi, Mississippi where her father was a commander. Her uncle and his family came to visit. Excited, Roberts wanted to run outside to greet them the moment she saw her uncle’s car pull up in the yard. Her dad calmly put his arm around her shoulders and said, “No.” He wanted her to conduct herself like a young lady and expressed that when they got in the house, she could jump up and down and knock her cousins over like a Labrador retriever if she chose to…

Colonel Roberts never had to sit Roberts or any of his children down to talk about going to college or doing something important with their lives. Greatness was just expected…

She remembers a time in college when she had her heart set on buying a motorcycle, and she felt that she needed to tell somebody. So she called her sister, Dorothy … About an hour later her telephone rang … “Dorothy won’t tell us what it is but she said that you’re going to do something you shouldn’t do, so technically she didn’t violate your trust,” her mother said.

Roberts told her mother the truth: “I’m getting a motorcycle tomorrow.”

Immediately her mother put her dad on the phone. Her father firmly said to his youngest child, “Under no circumstances will you buy a motorcycle. No daughter of mine will do that. You know it’s a deathtrap. You have a car to get you from point A to point B. You

know, if that’s gonna be the case you can bring that car home, and you can just ride your bicycle to your classes.” Her father went on and on until Roberts relented. “Fine, I won’t buy a motorcycle!” Robin said and hung up.

Many years later, her dad asked her, “Did I handle that right, Robin? Because I really don’t think I handled that right with you.” Robin replied, “Dad I’m fine! It’s okay. I’ve really let it go.”…

Roberts’s father influenced her career choice because it was an adventure being the daughter of Colonel Lawrence E. Roberts. She wanted to see even more of the world because her dad had already shown it to her and because she had already gotten a taste of it, she knew that as an adult a nine to five job wasn’t for her.…

On Good Morning America in 2003, Roberts had the honor of flying an AT-6, an Air Force training aircraft her dad once trained in. … They found an old clunker and Roberts joked that she wanted to fly a plane like her father did, not the actual 50+ year-old-plane that he flew in World War II. “This thing came chugging down the runway and my father was just beaming,” Robin shares. “Some of my favorite video is of him watching me fly and being with other Tuskegee Airmen.”…

Knowing that her father came from humble beginnings and went on to fulfill his dream of becoming a pilot influenced her to pursue her own dream of becoming a sports journalist. “It was almost like, how dare I not try to do this.…

“My dad saw me become the news anchor, but he passed away before I became an anchor at Good Morning America. He passed away shortly before I became one of the anchors with Diane Sawyer and Charlie Gibson,” Robin says. “I so wanted him to see this, but the comfort I have is that I know my father was proud of me and that’s the only thing that I, or any child, could ever ask for.”

Source: Essence Magazine

CTF’s Fatherhood Initiative’s Ten Tips for being a Great Dad

1. Respect Your Child’s Mother.                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

 If you are married, keep your marriage strong and vital. If you aren’t married, it is still important to respect and support the mother of your children.

2. Spend time with your children.
How a father spends his time tells his children what’s important to him. By sharing time with your children, you tell them they are important to you.

3. Earn the right to be heard.
Too often a father only speaks to his children when they have done something wrong. Begin talking with your kids when they are young, praise them and take time to listen to their ideas and problems.

4. Discipline with love.
All children need guidance and discipline, not as punishment, but to set reasonable limits. Remind your children of the consequences of their actions and provide meaningful rewards for good behavior.

5. Read to your children.
Begin reading to your children when they are very young. Instilling your children with a love for reading is one of the best ways to ensure they will have a lifetime of personal and career growth.

6. Show affection.
Children need the security that comes from knowing they are wanted and loved by their family. Parents, especially fathers, need to feel comfortable and willing to hug their children. Showing affection every day is the best way to let your children know that you love them.

7. Eat together as a family.
Sharing a meal together can be an important part of family life. It gives kids the chance to talk about what they are doing and is a good time for fathers to listen and give advice.

8. Be a teacher and a role model.
A father will see his children make good choices because he has taught them about right and wrong and encouraged them to do their best. By demonstrating honesty, humility and responsibility, fathers can show their children what is important in life. A daughter who grows up with a loving father learns that she deserves to be treated with respect.

9. Realize that a father’s job is never done.
Even after children are grown and leave the home, they will still look to their fathers for wisdom and advice. Fathers continue to play an essential part in the lives of their children as they make decisions about education, jobs, marriage and starting their own families.

10. Reach out to other parents for support.
Discuss parenting with other parents – both moms and dads. Share ideas, solve problems, find out what other parents are doing to tackle issues of discipline, safety, and communication. Get to know the parents of your kid’s friends. Consider joining or starting a dads’ group in your area. You can learn a lot, find support and camaraderie and enjoy parenting more when you are friends with other parents.

Source: click here.

As adolescents grow, there are several things to keep in mind as a father.  Fathers can have sacred moments too.  It may mean you have to create them, but nonetheless, they are just as important. Make sure you are spending time with your adolescents. As time passes, fathers tend to allow their youth to become residents in the home, and forget about their needs, since they are so social, and connected to their peer groups. Here are a few pointers by Kyle D. Pruett, M.D. Author of “Fatherneed: Why father Care is as Essential As Mother Care for Your Child.” – to help you remember the call to fatherhood and connection.

Prepare Your Emotions

Sometimes young people get upset and have to share their emotions. It’s a part of them learning about and exploring their identity. It’s natural for them to be “out of line” and say a thing or two that makes a parent question whom they were conversing with.  In all seriousness, feelings get hurt and it’s important for dads to recognize that their daughters can be sensitive, and their sons can be disconnected at time, or only want to talk sports, but it’s very natural for a dad to remain sensitive as well to their adolescents emotions, sensitivities and social relationships and friends.

  • Your feelings are going to get hurt. Remember it s business, not personal. Expect to be challenged, but stay in control. Someone should.
  • This stage will reveal your lowest and highest feelings of satisfaction. It may be a bumpy ride, so hang on!

Prepare your calendar:

It’s important to remember kids have a social life, and most of them want to spend about 99.9 percent of it with friends! Try to make sure you give your kids planning input to vacations and offer places to visit and go to see so it will be as memorable to them, as it is to you. Get to know their friends, it can make the difference between a better relationship between you and them, and help you to know them better as well.

  • Chase your children down, and buy them lunch, and listen. Don’t’ wait for them to always come to you. They can’t.  Also… don’t preach, lecture, or begin any sentence with: “when I was a kid” (you didn’t appreciate this advice when you were a kid, either.)
  • Periodically, give each of your kids a day or half a day of your time, and don’t be upset if they want to bring a friend. (This may be the only way to make such a day possible.)
  • Think very carefully about family vacations.

Prepare your skills:

If you have absolutely no idea what’s going on in the teen world, then you really are missing something! Get to know teen culture and what teens like and with less opinion, and more open-mindedness – ask them about their interests and why they like what they do.

  • Read a good book about teens and discuss it with your partner.
  • Practice talking about your beliefs without lecturing.
  •  Listen to what your teen is thinking and believing and ask their input (don’t accept “I don’t know” for an answer!)  Ask them to express their intentions listen to their advice (and listen some more). 
  • Talk about your world, friends, the news – and engage your teens respectfully about theirs. 
  • Watch for radical changes in your teens; friends, sleep habits, or money usage.  He suggests you calmly  and respectfully inquire…. But don’t interrogate. 
  • Stay in touch with your kids’ life, by talking to teachers, coaches and counselors. 
  •  Talk about sex.  How to relate to other teens and discuss what healthy relationships should look like. (These conversations are supposed to feel uncomfortable, he reminds!)


Author & Contributing writer- Jennifer Owens, LMSW


Photo © 2005 Anissa Thompson

Children are so vulnerable. They are like sponges and LOVE to soak up a Father’s Love. Father’s are so instrumental in the process of shaping and molding a child’s life. This is my passion, this is why  I choose to guide father’s.  Along the way I might share my story, and stories of others, and I’d like you to help other father’s share in this experience and offer their opinions. It’s sure to be a learning experience. So this is for the Fathers. The ones who weren’t led, the ones who lost their voices and their compassion, their strength along the way, and their stamina. You can find it  yet again. This blog is a journey to helping father’s cherish the experience of fathering and give greater purpose to this rewarding journey.