Idon’t really enjoy spending time with my children – certainly not my words but the words of Toby Young who is an author, TV personality and journalist.
He recently wrote an article in The Telegraph entitled Why Men Don’t Want It All. He claims that men’s darkest secret is that they want to spend less time with their children, not more.
I actually found this an interesting read and a fascinating insight into the mind of another working dad – especially as I have found it’s still not the done thing for dads to share their fatherly experiences with each other, even in the year 2013.
To be fair, when going for a pint with a friend I doubt they really want to hear about how the latest round of potty training is going, or how I juggle work and being a good dad.
In the article Toby Young explains how, when he is asked if he worries that his successful career is taking him away from spending more time with his four children, he always answers no.
In fact he believes it is the other way round as he worries spending more time with his children means less time concentrating on his career.
He talks about some of the things he enjoys, like taking them swimming and sitting down with them at meal times.
But in the article he focuses more on the difficult parenting jobs and says he would happily sacrifice them for more time at the office – seeing time at work as a refuge and a break from home.
He goes on to say that he thinks this is true of most men with young children.
While I think it is a very brave thing to not only admit this but also write about it in a national newspaper, I wonder how much of the article was tongue-in-cheek and written to generate a response.
But if there really is truth in his words, I can understand where he is coming from, but cannot agree with him.
I understand that great parenting is not only measured in the time we spend with our little ones and there is far more to it.
But the first years of our children’s life are, without sounding like a narrator from a Disney movie, truly magical.
Don’t get me wrong, when a two- year-old’s temper tantrum lasts all day, getting in the car to go to work can be a well-earned relief.
But I want to take in everything my children give me – the good, the bad and the exhausting.
And that’s mainly because I know that in a blink of an eye they’ll be grown up.
It was a great article on the mindset of working dads.
But of course not all working dads think the same.