More Dads please, teaching kids not to be a assholes.

This is the work of Chris Grady, a cool Dad in my opinion. Openly admitting he had depression and anxiety and struggled with being a parent. He sketched his comics, documenting his struggles in a private notepad, something that helped him through the dark times. He then later published them and I stumbled across his works www.lunarbaboon.com when I googled ‘help me be a parent before I drink another bottle of wine’. *ok not quite*, more along the lines of what we answer to our little humans when they ask ‘those’ questions.

What stood out for me from the outset was that here was a guy, yes a guy, those things you have to poke a stick at to get any response in these situations, who has firstly shown his vulnerability when it comes to mental health. Secondly to document his struggles that can be interpreted so easily to the grown-up assholes.

This is just one example of his works that came to mind when explaining to our daughter that the man up the road sometimes likes to be ‘Mary’ and yes that is him in the floral maxi dress. My explanation wasn’t dissimilar to Grady’s as my husband squirmed in the background not knowing what to say.

His momentary battle, not wanting to say the wrong words, and having a flashback to what his father had said to him about a similar Mary question. (the language was as colourful as Marys dress and not at all appropriate for 8 year old ears).

So of course, default to Mum. After the daughter chat and the terrified rabbit in the headlights moment (husband), a niggling doubt in myself emerged; had I said the right thing? Off I went to the parent of all, google.

I scroll through the blogs of the self-righteous Mums, battle the ‘pop ups’ of essential oils, humidifiers, self-help books, hipster forums, vegan diets for toddlers. Then, the headline Dad’s Sweet Comics Promote Empathy, Tolerance And Love…catches my attention.Not a Parent Manual in sight. Here is was as plain as day to quite simply not be an asshole!

The simplicity of Grady’s work I think is a relevant and fun platform to discuss with the whole family but maybe a great way for men/fathers who find it difficult to discuss controversial matters. It has come from the heart of a man who has struggled, who has shared his pain through this medium and is now opening up a world of discussion around mental health, parenting, and teaching little ones not to grow up into assholes.

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