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Charlie LeDuff on life as a stay-at-home dad

Erstellt von Hans-Georg Nelles am Montag 12. November 2007

Was bringt einen Pulitzer Preisträger, der für die Ney York Times von den (Krisen-) Schauplätzen der Welt berichtete dazu, sich als ‚stay at home dad’ um seine Tochter zu kümmern?

In der aktuellen Ausgabe von ‚Men’s Vogue’ beschreibt Charlie LeDuff sehr einfühlsam seinen Alltag und seine Gefühle abseits von den Kriegsschauplätzen und den Scheinwerfern der alltäglichen Aufmerksamkeit.

‚… Before my daughter was born, men my age were happy to lather on the unsolicited advice about what being a dad would be like. I would eventually come to find that it wasn’t really advice at all, but rather a sort of superficial observation, masculine margarine about what it feels like to be the Fatherly Influence. …

Now I am another creature altogether. I am a stay- at-home dad.

Allow me an obvious qualification here: It is the patriarch’s blessing to watch his baby’s eyes slowly transform from black to hazel (the eyebrows come later, in case you don’t know). There is the moment when the little beast has figured out how to stand on her own wobbly legs with the help of a chair, or when the first tooth breaks through, or when she mistakenly suckles your nose.

These are the good parts. She is 11 months old now and changing fast. I am deeply glad I was there for those things you can never get back once they’re gone. …

A man in my neighborhood who was painting a house stopped painting as he saw me leaning into the perambulator, trying to coax the little howler to sleep. His name was Jose. He was older and wore overalls and paint speckles. This man offered me something so deep, so penetrating, I wrote it down.

“The whole world is in your brazos there, amigo,” he said, pointing to the carriage. “That little girl is your world and your future and your blood. That is your hair and your eyes—I can see. A man, if he is truly a man, does what God asks him to do. To honor his family.”

“I know this,” I say, fascinated that the stranger could decipher me from across a street. “But it is hard sometimes for me to be happy about it.”

“Ah. Sometimes you see this duty as women’s work?”

“Yes,” I say. “They must be better at it.”

“This does not matter,” he tells me. “You must be better. If not the woman then the man, yes? This is preferable to the stranger who is not truly able to give the child love.”

He said it just like that. The nut graph, we call it in journalism. The point of the story. Jose articulated the thing my friends—the go-to-work dads—were not able, or not willing, to tell me: You have to decide if the child is more important than the stature, the action, the money. If she is, you must accept it and get on with the routine. …’

Die ganze Story finden Sie hier.

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