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We all know that the moms out there are awesome. They are the glue that holds the family together and can do just about anything. That being said, we dads have our place, too. Here’s a very unscientific list of 10 things that dads do better than moms.
1) Piggyback Rides
Sure, moms can do this, too, but dads are professionals. We can run with kids on our backs, barbecue, and use power tools. Moms can have them all bundled up in the slings and things when they’re little, but as soon as they hit toddlerhood, we’ve got them on our backs whenever their legs are just too tired to carry on (which is about 3 minutes after you go anywhere). And if we’re at a parade or crowded event, the kids just go up on the shoulders instead. Same effort for us, different view for them.
2) Horse Play
You have probably heard the phrase Daddy Jungle Gym. Basically, kids climb all over their dads, hanging on arms, legs, or back. Occasionally, kids will in turn be dangled upside down or held in the air by an arm and an ankle. Ever heard of Mommy Jungle Gym? No? There’s a reason for that. Dads are experts at scooping kids up and flipping them around. Kids will climb on us and expect us to toss them into the sky. Now, do we occasionally toss a kid too high and hit their head on the ceiling? Sure, but it usually results in laughter, not tears.
3) Getting Dirty
Grass stains? Tracking in mud? Holes in your brand new jeans? Dads don’t worry about such things. Here’s a shovel, let’s go dig up the yard!
This is a controversial one, because many women are good at sports, too. But most dads have watched enough sports that we could write doctoral dissertations. We can play catch, shoot hoops, and kick a goal. Even if we’re not playing, we can sit down with the kids and discuss why pass interference was called, analyze the perfect slap shot, and explain the infield fly rule. We can also instill the love of our favorite sports teams into our little ones, thereby giving us a reason to sit on the couch and watch the game. We’re bonding – Go Cubs!
5) Fixing Broken Toys
Anyone can use Super Glue, but dads take fixing toys as a serious personal challenge. Why do you think we keep that old Tupperware container full of mismatched screws. We can, and will, replace the broken axle on the toy car, repair the doll’s fractured arm, and get that flashing electronic game to play that annoying song again. (Ok, maybe that toy will find its way to the trash)
6) Introducing The Classics
Are dads better at reading Shakespeare, playing Mozart, and critiquing Van Gogh? No (although I bet some dads could handle the task). I’m talking about Bugs Bunny, Star Wars, and Super Mario Brothers. These cultural icons must be preserved and passed down to future generations. Dads are the right people for this mission.
7) Opening Jars
We dads know our personal responsibility to helping out around the house. We may not all be experts at cooking and cleaning, but we contribute in other ways, such as opening jars, killing spiders, and moving furniture. These jobs must be done, too, and we dads are ready.
Maybe it’s because we waste more time watching TV. Maybe it’s the video games. Maybe it’s caused by puberty, and our voices just have a bigger range. Whatever the reason, dads are experts at making different character voices. We can be dead ringers for those major icons (I can do Elmo and Mickey Mouse so well, you’d swear they were original) or we’re just way off (my Donald Duck sounds like spit squishing between my teeth), but our kids don’t care. To them, we have the best voices ever! We don’t even have to do a famous voice, anything out of the ordinary has them in stitches.
9) Video Games and Movies
Again, I know a lot of moms that are great gamers, but let’s be honest; when it comes to video games, dads know their business. We mostly wasted our college years playing the latest Madden. Before marriage and kids, we mastered Grand Theft Auto and Halo. So when the kids want to play Disney Infinity, we’ve got this. As for movies, dads can carry on entire conversations using only movie quotes. We have a section in our brains dedicated solely for movie trivia. Also, we will sit through any movie, no matter how bad or how many times we’ve seen it, because that’s what we do.
10) Teaching Independence
Moms are just so nurturing. It’s in their DNA. They don’t want their babies to get hurt, even when those babies are in college. A dad, on the other hand is much more likely to say, “What’s the worst that could happen?” “You’re on your own on this one.” “Try it, just don’t fall off the roof.” Dads aren’t afraid to give kids more freedom to make choices, and when those choices go wrong we’re the first one there to say, “Now what did you learn, and how can we fix it?”
So dads, take pride in your work when it comes to these areas. Kids need your expertise. And moms, don’t take offense, because we all know that if this was a list about things moms did better, it would be way more than 10 items. Just recognize that we dads have a niche, and the next time you need a kid carried, a jar opened, or a video game played, just tell the kids, “Ask your Dad.”
What are some of the things dads do better in your family? I’d love to make a longer list!