Real Dads Don't Babysit

Figuring out the new father in your life just got easier.


Hello, it's us. You know, men? Bigger than you. Hairier. More interested in large shiny objects. Don't worry, we're not offended if you don't remember us. You've been busy growing our children inside you, or enduring labor to bring them into the world, or surviving on three hours of sleep. Anyway, we're just checking in, y'know, saying hi. And by the way, here are some things you might want to know about new dads, plus a request or two. No big whoop.

We bond, too—just not like you. Scientists have proven that even an infant can bond with his dad over a good ballgame. Especially if the Red Sox are winning.

Compliments make our day. Practice saying things like "Wow, you're so good at getting him to take that bottle!" and "I can't believe how easy you make installing a car seat look!" We will walk over hot coals for you if it earns us a little praise.

We're more physical than you. Babies love being tossed into the air. Yes, the odds are good that he'll eventually spit up. We'll clean it up.

Don't freak out if we seem worried about money. It's not that we don't love the baby. It's just that we don't see the logic of buying the crib mattress with a 25-year warranty.

Give us a second, please. We know you had a rotten day. But when we get home from work, allow us to change into some sweats and shift into Daddy Mode before you hand us a crying baby.

Real dads don't babysit. I can't tell you how many times I've been asked, "Oh, do you babysit?" Babysitting involves a baby, a chair (for sitting) and a nonparent in a temporary custodial role. We're not helpless, you know.

Playing golf makes us better fathers. Give us a little time off to just be guys, because that's part of what makes us dads. Otherwise we'd be you. And we could never replace you.