5 Ways That Being A Father Has Changed My Life

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I am not the man that I used to be. In fact, I am better. Much better.

Becoming a father may be the one thing that has changed my life more than anything. Well, almost anything. Marrying an amazing woman who has become my best friend and adventurous life partner was also a very good choice! The truth is that she made this all possible.

My name is Uriah. I am a husband of 15 years and a father with 8 years of experience on my parenting resume. I have two incredible girls who still think I am the strongest and smartest man they know. I also have the privilege of being a family therapist and parent coach.

Now, I am not going to pretend that being a father is not a huge pain in the butt sometimes. Being a responsible and loving father is time consuming, expensive and extremely boring at times. However, it can also be life changing. Maybe you know what I’m talking about.

Here are five ways that being a father has changed my life.

1. A massive increase in joy and laughter

My kids are hilarious and quirky. We have a lot of fun as a family. Tickle fights, dance parties, art projects, family movies and more. Seeing the world through my kid’s eyes has been a whole new experience full of exciting discoveries and joyful moments. Sure, there are tears, tantrums and tough days, but I can easily say that I am happier and more fulfilled now that I am a father.

2. Feeling incredibly more loved than I deserve

No one becomes a parent to improve their self-esteem. However, I am wonderfully aware of how becoming a father has helped me to feel more loved and accepted than I have ever felt. I can be myself, with all of my shortcomings and strange habits and I know that my family loves me regardless. Well, most of the time. I do have some strange habits!

3. Amazing opportunity to create the family that I always wished I had

I think most people have a desire to make some changes and improve upon their early family experiences. Some people are more or less successful in their efforts. I am far from perfect, but I am so grateful that I get daily opportunities to be a loving, present and engaged father. I am proud of many things that I have accomplished, but being a father and creating a happy family is by far my most significant achievement.

4. Taught me how to be more selfless and focus on others

It is not far from the truth to say that I didn’t really “grow up” until I became a father. I was not an incredibly hard worker (read: lazy) and I may have been just a little bit self-focused. Becoming a father lit a fire underneath me and motivated me to work hard to support my family. I am constantly choosing between focusing on my needs and wants and paying attention to what my family needs from me. I have learned the satisfaction and joy of loving someone else even more than myself. While this can be frustrating and inconvenient, it is also an amazing gift.

5. Given me a wonderful balance between work and family

I love my family and I also love my work. I am blessed to be the father of two beautiful girls. I am also privileged to be able to coach parents in creating the family they want and help teenage boys navigate the challenges of growing up. My work has helped my to be a better father and being a father has inspired me in my work. There is a nice balance that I enjoy.

There is no doubt that I would not be the man I am today if I had not become a father. I am more joyful, more loved, more balanced and more fulfilled than I could ever have imagined was possible.

I don’t know what your parenting experience has been like, but I want to encourage you to think about a few things today.

How has becoming a parent been a gift in your life? In what ways have you been able to grow as a person through this experience? Even if your parenting path has been more of a struggle than a joy, you can choose to view it from this perspective. In fact, it may make all the difference in the world. You may just realize that becoming a parent has changed your life.


2013HeadshotUriah
Guilford is a husband, a father and a family therapist. He provides therapy and coaching for teenage boys, young adults and families. He also has a blog, newsletter and digital resources for parents of teens. To find out more about Uriah, you can stay in touch with him here, here, on Facebook, and on Twitter.

 

 


 

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