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Father’s Day: Reflections on Fathers and Parenting

Writer and Professor Michele Weldon writes today in the Chicago Tribune about her experiences with her devoted father, as well as her negative experiences with the father of her three children.

Why a father has more than rights; he has responsibility
By Michele Weldon

June 17, 2011
We don’t celebrate Father’s Day at our house. My three sons dread the advertising-soaked holiday the way many singles loathe Valentine’s Day. It’s not that they have lost their father to death, disease, military service, an act of God or misfortune of any stripe. It is that their father has chosen to lose them.

As it is for many fatherless families across the globe, this Sunday is a reminder that fatherhood should be more than a biological feat; it is a primal moral responsibility and one that many men regrettably fail to fulfill.
I empathize with Prof. Weldon, and appreciate that she recognizes the thousands of fathers who love, mentor and raise their children well. I also can suggest that for many fathers, Father’s Day is a difficult day, especially if Dad is a noncustodial Dad who sees his children far less often than he wishes.

A big part of my practice is representing parents in complex divorce and custody cases. I enjoy representing fathers who seek to have either the residential custody of their children, or who seek a full and shared parenting agreement.

While there are fathers who do not maintain their connection and investment in their children’s lives, as Prof. Weldon discusses, there are many fathers who wish for, and fight for, more time with their children, and fight to have an equal and active parenting role in the post-divorce lives of their children.

It is these fathers that desire to have the fullest involvement possible in the lives of their children that I celebrate, and I am proud to represent any parent in a difficult divorce case that truly has the best interests of their children in mind, and wishes the fullest and most devoted parenting role possible.

To these Dads that put their hearts and souls into their parenting, we celebrate you, this Father’s Day.

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