Here's to the supportive dads - the dads that raise strong and open- minded children. Vulnerable, affectionate, and passionate, these dads influence and lead by example.
We are thankful to know many influential and supportive men that share their advice on health and happiness.
We asked four of our TruSupporters to share stories about their fathers, or their personal experience being a dad, and we are honoured and excited to share their responses with you!
Glen Harris is the father of Jillian Harris - a television personality featured on The Bachelor & The Bachelorette, Love It or List It Vancouver, and soon, Jillian and Justin on the W Network, which will debut on June 21st. Glen is a Kelowna resident who is happily married to his wife, Peggy, and Grandfather and best friend to his grandson, Leo.
1. We understand you have a great sense of humour! What are some of your all-time favourite jokes?
My favourite jokes seem to change with the years, but what never changes are the jokes by Rodney Dangerfield. They crack me up over and over again. Here is one that I love:
A girl phoned me and said, “Come on over, there’s no one home”.
I went over. Nobody was home.
2. What is the best thing about being a Grandpa?
My favorite thing about being a Grandpa is experiencing the happiness and love that radiates between my daughter and her son. It fills my heart with joy knowing what they mean to each other. Such a wonderful gift. It’s a feeling like no other. Leo is amazing, he restores the precious feelings of life and love in new ways. I wish every guy on this planet the moment of being a grandfather.
3. What is the most challenging thing about being a father? What kind of lessons/morals were important for you to teach Jill as she was growing up?
The most challenging thing about raising a daughter is you never stop thinking about her safety or happiness.
We always taught Jill to be respectful of life and all the things in it. Do not take anything for granted. Love, family, friendships, laughter and hard work was the way. Jillian to this day has made me so proud as father. Our relationship has always been a very close one. She is so thoughtful and generous in so many important ways. I feel blessed.
John Nash is the proud father of Steve Nash, Martin Nash and Joann Malhotra. John, an athlete himself, played soccer at a semi-professional level in both England and South Africa. He continues to play soccer as well as tennis.
1. What is one of your favourite things about being a dad?
One of the best things about being a Dad is signing on to my iPad or phone everyday and having the picture of my three wonderful children appear, I am so proud of all of them.
2. What is your favourite (dad) joke?
“I went on vacation with my Dad. When I got home mum asked, how was it? I told her Dad took me out to the middle of a large lake every morning and threw me overboard and made me swim back. She said, didn't you find that hard? I told her, no, the hardest part was getting out of the sack!”
3. What are your fondest memories of your father?
Memories of my dad are numerous.
I remember playing in a soccer game at Boeham Wood. I got the ball on the wing and Dad’s voice came from the stand, "Come on John!" He was unbelievably supportive. After the game I was going to go home with him in his car. He said go on the bus with the team and he would follow and take me home from the ground. He always had such an unselfish perspective.
4. What are important values you hope to have passed on to your children/grandchildren?
- Praise is the breakfast of champions. When children get it approximately right, respond with praise, or redirect.
- Perspiration is more likely to bring success than inspiration, both are an unbeatable combination.
Manny Malhotra is a retired NHL ice-hockey player who in his 18 year career played for a number of teams, including the Montreal Canadiens and Vancouver Canucks. Manny is now one of the assistant coaches of the Vancouver Canucks.
1. What is your favorite thing to do with your children?
My favorite thing to do with my kids is to play whatever game it is they want to play. Whether it's a soccer game, mini hockey in the basement, Jedi Knights vs. dinosaurs, or whatever made up game they come up with. I love seeing them play in their element. I have three boys, and they all have unique personalities and different ideas as far as what they consider to be fun. So to be with them when they are at their happiest and enjoying what they do is awesome.
2. What is the most challenging part about being a father?
The most challenging part of being a dad is knowing when to put on what hat. There are times I have to be the referee, the teacher, the disciplinarian, the advocate and the comforter. And there are also times when I have to leave them alone and let them figure out a situation on their own. Of course you'd like your kids to do the right thing all the time, but the fact of the matter is they need to make certain mistakes along the way to learn right/wrong, acceptable/unacceptable and what they can or can't do. There are times I get so frustrated with certain things they do or say, but when I look back at my own childhood I realize they acted or said the exact same thing I did in those situations.
3. What is one of the most embarrassing moments you’ve had as a father?
The most embarrassing thing I've done as a parent .... the list is too long to mention. Spit up on your clothes in public, yelled at my kid using the wrong kid's name are all the standard ones. For me I don't really get embarrassed about these things because I've realized that if you can't laugh about some of the things you do as a parent, you are in for some loooong days (and nights).
4. What advice would you give to new dads?
The best advice I would give to any new dad out there is "do what works for your child and family". There are so many books, articles and opinions about what diapers, stroller, clothes, toys, books, car seat, etc that you ‘need’ to use. For me, I found that all kids are unique individuals and need to be treated as so. It shouldn’t be a competition with other kids or parents in your circle for who is the best, you'll learn very quickly there are no awards, trophies or prizes for parenting (I've asked).
Tracy Moore is a Canadian television journalist who hosts the longest running Canadian lifestyle show, Cityline, and previously anchored Citytv Toronto's Breakfast Television. She is the mother of two, and an active volunteer in the Toronto community to raise awareness and support for young girls and women alike.
1. What is your favourite memory of your Father?
My father has always been the strong silent type. He was in charge of mornings at my house as my mom worked an early shift and my dad worked the late afternoon shift. Almost every morning my sister and I were late to get to the bus stop. And almost every morning he would drive us chasing the bus, or all the way to school.
I was also a blankie addict (like my daughter) and my dad’s lap has always been (and still is) the best place to snuggle in while rubbing a soft blanket against your nose.
2. What is the best lesson your Father has taught you? Have you passed this along to your own children?
My dad taught us that what we think is the only opinion that counts.
As an engineer, he worked mostly with machines and has never been big on taking in other people’s opinions and observations. I’m a bit of a people pleaser myself, so this is a tough lesson for me. I absolutely pass this wisdom to my children!
3. How has your father supported you in your goals, career, education and with your family?
When I graduated from Western University with my Master’s Degree, I moved back home to try and find work. I would catch my dad praying for me under his breath while he walked around the kitchen. When I did get that first job it was downtown, and my shift started at 5:45 am. The subway didn’t even run at that time - so just like when I was in school, my dad woke up every morning and drove me (and my mom) downtown to work just so that I would be on time and ready to take on my first job. He is one of the best men I know.
What is your fondest memory of your dad - or your favourite dad joke?