A Top Ten Moment in Fatherhood

A couple weeks ago my little sister got married.  It was bittersweet for me.  I was happy to see my sister get married, but I have not spent any time with my new brother-in-law.  I make this important because my sister was a single mother and it was important to me that he steps up to the plate and be a father to my niece that she needs.  Her bio dad was young and had allegedly done some pretty bad things.  Knowing what little I do about her husband, I felt safe that there would be a foundation to build upon and grow from there.  That same weekend, everyone in my family was at my brother's house.  When my sister's family was leaving, my niece looked up to her step-dad and called him "Daddy".

Wow.  That didn't take long.

He even got on to her during the visit as well.

Ok, I feel that so far he's doing a good job with their relationship by not letting the new kid see what they can get away with.  He moved into the role quite nicely with confidence and my niece is comfortable with whole situation.  With her biological father there's uncertainty, with her new dad there's the feel of being secure.

With MaddSkillz I didn't inspire the same confidence that my new bro had shown.  Maybe it was his FBI training versus my CSR training.  Quite possibly he understood that her father was not going to be around and came through with exactly what my concerns were before going into the marriage. 

With MaddSkillz, we were buddies first.  Even during times when his mother and I weren't talking to one another, I still hung out with him.  I wasn't trying to be a father figure to him, I was just trying to be a positive influence to him.  His dad has never really stepped up to the plate when it has come to MaddSkillz the past 15 years.  He sees him every other weekend, pays child support, but doesn't connect with him emotionally and on different levels that I have.  The fact is his dad hasn't shown MaddSkillz enough effort for him to take his dad's hand and say "let's go".

We've tried to get him to make the motions towards building a relationship with his dad, but he's resisted saying his dad should be the one doing it.  This is true, but sometimes people don't know their doing something wrong unless you tell them.  Nothing happened and his resentment for his father has grown.  He only goes to his dad's out of obligation and he feels that his dad only takes him for the same reason.

The other day, MaddSkillz and his mother were having a discussion and it went back to his dad (KC has been nothing but supportive in regards to MaddSkillz developing a healthy relationship with his dad), and MaddSkillz became emotionally upset. It suddenly came out that he feels guilty for some feelings that he has in regards to his dad.

He told his KC that he sees me more as his father than he does his own dad.

When I heard I wanted to cry. 

This is like a top ten fatherhood moment here. 

A boy that is not mine by blood, even after all the stuff we've been through, sees me in a way that I never expected.  I've never tried to replace his dad, and I have never gone out of my way to make myself seem like a better person than his dad.  I was just doing what needed to be done.  To me he is no different than my other children, even if he never calls me "Dad".

Have a great weekend my friends.  And if you're blessed to be a dad this weekend, Happy Father's Day.

For more great dad stories, go check out Fatherhood Friday over at Dad-Blogs.