These days, fatherhood can take many forms, both traditional and non-traditional. Children are just as likely to be raised by single fathers, stay-at-home dads, grandfathers, or any other paternal figures, who also take on the role of a maternal one. So, it is fitting that on Father’s Day today, we also celebrate unconventional dads, bearing in mind that the idea of an official day to commemorate fathers sprang from one woman’s affection for her single father.
Sunil Mattoo, Single father and restaurateur
Being a single dad has its own set of challenges, but it is very important to be a friend and an inspiration to your kids. While running a Kashmiri cuisine food delivery business called Kong Poush, I also ensure to spend quality time with my son, Ishaan and daughter, Ishita and inculcate good values in them. As a single parent, my parenting style is more of “show, don’t tell”. I believe children learn by observing, so showing them rather than lecturing or telling them makes all the difference. I make it a point, whether it’s a son or a daughter, that they learn how to do basic household chores.
Gourov Dasgupta, Stay-at-home father and composer
Being a stay-at-home dad means I’m surrounded 24/7 by the two most valuable things on the planet — my daughter and my music. It allows me to work and give enough time to my daughter Vedika, who is now five and needs all the love, support and guidance during these growing up years. It has never been a task for me. I have single-handedly taken care of raising her right from the time she was born and have continued to do that till now with immense pride. She has always been my top priority and the bond that we share as a father-daughter cannot be described in words. I feel stay-at-home dads are a lucky bunch and should be proud that they’re managing work and family from home. For a stay-at-home dad, every day is Fathers Day and the feeling is unbelievable.
Vijay Kumar, Grandfather and director of a content writing firm
As a father, I enjoyed seeing my daughters grow up to become strong and independent women. I’ve always been a proud father, but the day I saw my daughter become a mother, my respect for her grew manifold. She had a tough pregnancy and her resilience until she delivered her baby safely was inspiring. I feel blessed that I get to relive all those memories now with my one-and-a-half-year-old grandson, Veer. He is born with a charismatic personality who likes to keep everyone around him happy. Veer has taught me to be childlike and carefree. He is always smiling and has imbibed the habit of sharing even without us teaching him.