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This is the third post in a series leading up to the European Men’s Gathering this year, which I will be posting in order to set out my thoughts on the subject. See the previous post here.
As a mentor or a role model, a father is a person who others can lean on. In times of trouble or chaos, when life happens and things go awry, then the father is the rock on which the waves of life can break, who is solid and dependable. That quality of being unchanging and reliable is what creates the sense of safety and security that others can build up their lives around.
The question then is, how does the father develop this capacity for stability? What is his foundation built on? What are the steel pylons that he has sent into the earth to root him to reality? And importantly, what does he lean on when, despite all of his preparation and training, something comes along that gets him out of his depth, and when he is unable to handle the storm in his own strength?
When life gets too tough to handle, some men lean on their wives. But she was looking to lean on him, so that is a fragile game, and vulnerable to issues which hit both partners. Many turn to distraction. The timepassing industry. Computer games. Netflix. Alcohol. Drugs. Pornography. And all the other addictions to distract ourselves from dealing with the problems we are facing, whether it is burying ourselves in work, or a cycle of binge drinking.
Some men have a good circle of loving friends, and are able to turn to them in times of trouble. But friends cannot always be counted on either. Sometimes we are even betrayed by our friends.
See the next post here: