Dads, Tell Your Work-Family Story as Part of the It’s Working Project!

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Please join me, click on this picture, and share your work-family story at the It’s Working Project.

Join me in sharing your work-family story at the It’s Working Project. It will help spread the word about involved fatherhood (and you can even win a copy of my book!)

The awesome folks at the It’s Working Project (led by the incomparable Julia Beck) do amazing work in promoting the needs of working parents. One of the most important things they do is curate the “Portrait Project” a website where working parents share their work-family stories. Their powerful collection of first-person narratives are important for so many reasons:

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Author Q&A with Clint Edwards on the Funny and Messy Sides of Fatherhood

I really enjoyed this book, and recommend it
I really enjoyed this book, and recommend it

Clint Edwards wrote This is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things, a really funny, honest and insightful memoir about fatherhood. As one reviewer said, “It will make you laugh. It will make you think. It will make you cry. Sometimes all three at the same time.”

Clint is a great writer and I think all of us will see ourselves in some aspect of this book. Clint was nice enough to answer a few questions about his book and the advice he has for working dads.

Your book is really funny, can you share one funny story from This is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things?

Sure! Here is a list of stupid questions I received after having my third child and how I’d like to respond… If I wasn’t such a nice guy.

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The Good News From the Adam LaRoche Situation

The Adam LaRoche situation stirred controversy. However, it also validated involved fatherhood
The Adam LaRoche situation stirred controversy. However, it also validated involved fatherhood (Wikimedia/creative commons)

The Adam LaRoche situation, even with its controversy, validates how far we’ve come in recognizing the importance of involved fatherhood.

Baseball and fatherhood are my two favorite topics, so when the curious case of Adam LaRoche and his fatherhood-related exit from the Chicago White Sox broke last week, some asked me for my thoughts.

After all, the last time fatherhood and baseball crashed together like this was when Daniel Murphy was criticized for taking paternity leave two years ago. As that story was blowing up, I made sure to jump on it quickly, and got my first national TV interview, an article in the Wall Street Journal, and lots of other inquiries from journalists looking for some commentary.

This time around, though, I hesitated to jump in with my analysis. And I’m glad I did, as the details are murkier and the issue is not as black and white.

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Family Leave Insurance: The Best $28 I Spent Last Year

Family Leave Insurance gives New Jersians good bang for the buck
Family Leave Insurance gives New Jersians good bang for the buck

God, I hate doing my taxes. But as I was compiling my receipts, 1099s and I040s, I saw something interesting on my Fairleigh Dickinson University W2 form. It was a listing of the amount deducted from my paychecks last year as part of New Jersey’s Family Leave Insurance program. It was all of $28.

New Jersey is one of three states (New York may be next!) to provide paid family and medical leave. And like California and Rhode Island, this benefit is funded through a small payroll deduction into a state-wide insurance fund. Simply put, everyone pays in a small amount, and then, when one needs a family-related (most commonly a maternity or paternity leave) or medical leave (care for self or for a family member), they can draw from this insurance fund for wage replacement of two-thirds of one’s income, up to $604 per week, during the 6-week leave.

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It’s 2016. Why Do We Still See Involved Dads as Novelty Items?

Yes, I'm an involved dad, but wearing your baby is normal and common
Yes, I’m an involved dad, but wearing your baby is normal and common

It’s 2016. Good dads aren’t rare – most dads are highly involved with their children. Involved dads should not be seen as novelty items.

Two quick stories about something that annoys me. (Apologies in advance for crankiness, especially as I know those I’m reacting to are 100% well-intentioned).

1. Last week, a mom blogger asked a facebook group of guys who attended the recent Dad 2.0 Summit to send her pictures of them carrying their babies in a sling or Bjorn-like carrier. She wanted to highlight involved fatherhood in a photo-essay, as a way to demonstrate that there are great dads out there. Many dads from the group were happy to contribute. After all, who doesn’t like cute dad and kid pictures?

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