Family Life


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Raising Davis: Do dads have more fun?

Paul and I recently asked Davis what he liked about having a Mommy and Daddy. He said, “I like that you take care of me.” Paul and I exchanged surprised looks. It seemed such a grown-up response from a six-year-old and so we kept digging. He said he liked wrestling with Daddy. And he likes doing puppet shows with Mommy.

Davis is happiest when he and his dad are on all fours and play-wrestling. You can see the pure joy as he lets off some of that six-year-old boy steam. Paul, at 6’3”, knows exactly how to handle him so that Davis gets the idea of wrestling without getting hurt (I’m pretty sure if Davis and I went at it, I’d be the one tapping out!)

Paul and Davis also love to experiment with building Hot Wheel tracks using pillows, boxes or anything that will work to make the “most awesome ramp ever!” They go to a park to fly battery-operated helicopters and inevitably crash them. If there is a chance that adding a small motor can make anything go faster, well then, Daddy does it. They’re planning to go fishing together this year and this will be a brand new experience for Davis. I won’t join them because sitting in a boat waiting for my line to wiggle, well, isn’t my idea of a great Saturday!

Paul and I parent Davis differently. Paul is playful, loves all sports and shares most of Davis’ interests with genuine enthusisasm.

Sometimes, I envy this natural bond between father and son because Paul is so clearly the fun parent. He’s also the parent that expects the best from Davis and will push him harder than I will. That results in Paul’s approval meaning much more to Davis than mine.

I used to feel a little competitive with Paul but recently figured out that together, we’re giving Davis the full parenting package – taking care of Davis. And according to him, that’s the best part!

Meghan Bradley is a full-time sales rep and mother of Davis, 6, and stepmother to Madison and MacKenzy, 15.  To read more of Meghan’s Mommy Diaries, visit or follow her on Twitter @raisingdavis.

Originally published in ParentsCanada magazine, May 2012

a man carrying two children

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