The Hobart

Go Daddy

by Lily Whiting
Go Daddy

Whether it’s accessing resources, locating a dad-friendly changeroom or con­necting socially, TasDads was created by co-founders and dad-ministrators, Anthony, Brennan and Sam to give expect­ing, new or seasoned dads a platform to talk about the messy and challenging journey of fatherhood. We caught up with TasDads and spoke all things parenting.

What perceptions about fatherhood do you want to change?

We just want to help reinforce the notion that many dads want to be, and love being, more and more involved in their children’s lives. The days of the lazy slob American sitcom dad are gone, and we want to champion that change. We also want to break the stigma around fathers’ mental health (including post natal depression) with the huge changes children bring to their lives and family dynamic. We want to help support dads to be the best fathers they can be and to build their confidence.

How does TasDads improve family relationships and dynamics?

We’re all about offering a peer support network and connecting dads with each other. We strongly believe that this con­nection allows us to normalise both the ups and downs of being a parent. That’s especially big for first time parents, but is great for parents at all different stages. Our collective experience equips us with the knowledge to be more involved, confi­dent parents – and that in turn helps even the workload in the family unit and makes everyone happier.

Why are dad groups not as common as mum groups?

Firstly, if you weigh up the experiences of dads against mums during the pregnancy process and early days of parenthood – there’s no doubt that mums go through a hell of a lot more. So if there were to be only one side that gets that support network, mums deserve it hands down – but we ask, why can’t there be both? Family dynamics have changed, and everything’s trying to catch up. There has been a shift from the old ‘nuclear family’ – where dad works and mum stays at home looking after the house and kids – to what we have now where dads are more hands on or involved.

Now both parents may be working due to the high cost of living, families might be separated, or more dads are taking on the primary care role. There was likely the notion that dad’s didn’t need such groups, but it’s become apparent over time that we do (and maybe always have).

How often do TasDads catch up?

We have a range of catch-up types that are open to all of our members and we try to get at least two in per month. Some are a cafe/park combo catch-up or a walk where we encourage bringing children, and others are more “dad only” like our bi-monthly dinner and drinks catch-up. All of our event details are posted in our private Facebook group around a month in advance and are open to all members of the group (and tag-alongs that don’t have Facebook).

What do you guys love most about being a parent?

We love just being there for our kids. Being so heavily involved in our child’s lives and seeing that returned with that warming unconditional love, and the “I love you daddy”s is one of the most rewarding feelings in the world. I think we all agree that the best sound in the world is the sound of our children laughing/giggling (especially when we are the cause of it). Being able to shape a life and guide our children to be the best versions of themselves as they navigate this world is also such an incredible privilege.

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July 2022

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