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Father's Day special: Absentee Working Dads

In 2024 we could hope that the parenting model has evolved from the mommy in the house as a home manager while dad is the head of the house brining in the money and quite distanced from the household chores and management of the kids. However today we observe that though parenting is not yet an equally shared responsibility, in most past of the developed world it is getting more equitable. Except for families with much absent working Fathers.

Through this article, penned by our volunteer, Ayse Gul and Suman Widge, LocalHood would like to salute the Busy-Bee Absentee Working Dads. These men who are absent much of the time due to the requirements of their job, and hence have to work twice as hard to maintain a relationship with their children. These fathers being to busy, their thoughts have been penned down by their lovely wives.

Daddy Borat, Father of 2 primary school going kids

As a working father, one of my greatest challenges is managing my time effectively. Currently employed in a multinational company during its growth stage, my days are filled with developing strategies and ensuring that business operations are executed according to plan.

Working within the travel industry, which involves a high level of people interaction, I find myself traveling extensively and often working late hours. Amidst this demanding schedule, my primary concern and source of dissatisfaction lie in not being able to spend enough quality time with my family.

I am blessed with wonderful, active, and intelligent children, as well as a caring and beautiful wife. It is my constant endeavor to strike a balance between my personal and professional life. I strive to witness firsthand the growth of my children and provide stronger support to my wife, ensuring that she doesn't feel alone in managing our children's needs.

While the kids are growing, I yearn to be present for their milestones and witness their progress, such as learning to ride a bicycle, swimming, talking, and walking. These precious moments will never come back, and I am aware of the importance of being there for them during these significant milestones. By prioritizing my family, I can create an environment that nurtures their growth and presents them with a good life.

I miss my kids every day when I leave early for the office. However, they are the motivation that drives me to work harder than ever. It's the realization that I want to break the cycle of "my own dad was never there for me" and inspire them by being the best father I can possibly be. Through my actions, I aim to teach them the values I hold dear in life - kindness, mindfulness, and providing them with a comfortable upbringing.

So, on this Father's Day, I want to extend my heartfelt wishes to all the working dads out there. A big shoutout to those who successfully balance their careers with the joys of raising a little one. I also want to express my gratitude to my children for the invaluable life lessons and inspiration they have unknowingly bestowed upon me.

In conclusion, as a dedicated but often absent father, I acknowledge the importance of finding a balance between work and family. By prioritizing our loved ones and making the most of the time we have, we can strive to create a fulfilling and meaningful life for ourselves and our families. Embracing these moments and creating a nurturing environment allows us to present our children with a good life filled with love, support, and memories that will last a lifetime. Happy Father's Day to all the hardworking dads out there!

Daddy Vikas Widge, Marine Engineer, Father of a now Adult Daughter:

In today's fast-paced and demanding world, achieving a healthy work-life balance can be a challenge for many individuals, particularly for hard-working fathers whose jobs require them to be away from home or travel a lot.

Being a Marine engineer, I missed out being around for many milestones in my daughter’s upbringing as I would be away on ship for 10-12 months together. I had to rely on phone calls and letters to know what phases my child was undergoing. I was torn between my professional responsibilities and desire to be present and engaged in my child's upbringing.

As an absentee Dad, I worried about not being able to bond with my child, provide emotional support, or instill values and lessons that were essential for her upbringing and growth.

This led to my joining a shore job in Hong Kong, in the hopes of being able to spend much more time with my family. True I did get more time but yet needed to travel out nearly 18-20 days of the month. Hence I invariably was absent for many events. I missed out on important milestones, school performances, parent-teacher meetings and often felt a sense of regret and guilt for not being there to witness or participate in these memorable moments.

Had I been able to I would have liked to spend quality time with my daughter – going skating together, teaching her badminton and table tennis and also learning swimming with her.

For Father's Day, while my daughter was growing up, it depended on my work commitments if I was able to be home. If I was in HK, we celebrated by just going out for a meal and also our daughter, Disha just made me a card, many of them I has preserved. Disha now lives in London.


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