The internet was in an uproar this week when T.V. journalist Piers Morgan made fun of actor Daniel Craig–famous for his role as James Bond–who was photographed carrying his daughter in a carrier.
Morgan tweeted, “Oh 007…not you as well?!!!” He then hash-tagged #emasculatedBond. Fortunately, nobody let Morgan get away with this. Dads were tweeting him back immediately with photos of themselves carrying their babies in the same way. The stigma that once surrounded dads who cared for their children has certainly lessened, though Morgan’s tweet is proof that that mindset still exists.
When I see this photo of Daniel Craig carrying his child, I don’t think he’s been emasculated. In fact, I think the opposite. I think of him as a hero.
I often talk about hero dads. But when I say hero, I don’t mean physically strong, athletic or a decorated war hero. I mean a dad who is present with his child, attentive and loving. This is what makes a dad a real hero. By the looks of Daniel Craig, I can assume he is a hero dad. He is intentionally spending time with his child. He is being attentive. He is assuming roles that some believe only belong to the mother. If Craig continues this type of loving behavior toward his daughter, this will mean the world to her when she grows up.
Something I try to explain to dads is that they are already hardwired to be their child’s hero. You don’t have to do anything to achieve hero status. You don’t have to play James Bond in a movie. You just have to live out the calling that’s already on you. How?
…are present with their child.
Like we see Daniel Craig doing above, hero dads are present with their children, physically and emotionally. They spend intentional time with them and they listen to them. They don’t just simply throw the ball; they listen to what their kid is saying as they’re throwing it.
HERO dads are present with their children physically and emotionally.
…are careful with their words.
A dad’s words can make or break a child. When you tell your child something, she will internalize it as truth. If you tell her she’s strong, she will think she is strong. If you tell her she’s brave, she’ll believe she’s brave. You have the power to build up your child’s character simply by using your words.
You have the power to build up your child’s character simply by using your words.
…lead, instead of coach.
There’s a big difference between a coach and a leader. Coaches can teach skills and encourage their execution, but it’s a leader who brings vision, which is another way of saying a moral framework for how life is to be lived.
Moral leadership relies on moral courage, which means having the intestinal fortitude to do, say, and believe what you know to be right. That sense of right and wrong comes from a well-formed conscience—a conscience that doesn’t make up its own rules but that conforms itself to eternal truth.
Being a hero dad continues long after the days of holding your baby in a carrier, though that is a good start. Hero dads stay present, they use their words carefully and they focus on leading rather than coaching.
Dads, if this sounds like hard work, it is. But don’t worry. You’ve been hardwired for it. Be the type of dad who will hold your child not only when he is a baby but when he is a toddler, a child, an adolescent, and even an adult. Because you will always be a hero in your child’s eye, and the work a hero is never done.
Be the type of dad who will hold your child not only when he is a baby but when he is a toddler, a child, an adolescent, and even an adult. Because you will always be a hero in your child’s eye, and the work a hero is never done.
P.S. If you want to see the whole thread of amazing hero-dad responses to Piers Morgan’s tweet, click here and get ready to smile: https://twitter.com/piersmorgan/status/1051707168490221568