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As a father, have you ever heard yourself say things you never thought you would ever say? You know, things like, “Sure, I would love to change that diaper,” or, “Candy for breakfast because you didn’t wake me up in the middle of the night for the fifth night in a row? Sure!”
One of those things I never imagined communicating as a parent has been making sure my boys understand that there’s a no-punching-in-the-face rule when they play “puncher guys.”
For the uninitiated, puncher guys takes place when my sons strip down to their tighty whities, share a pair of boxing gloves (my oldest has to wear the left glove since he’s right handed and a little stronger) and start swinging. Now, they’re not angry or actually fighting, but, as typical boys, they love to roughhouse a little.
Just to make sure you don’t think I’m crazy, I join in with them and watch to make sure they don’t get frustrated. They punch, they wrestle, they laugh – and, to their parents’ benefit, it tires them out.
Before having children, I never thought I would allow my kids to use boxing gloves as an activity. However, with two rambunctious little boys ages 5 and 4 who need plenty of ways to expend energy, all kinds of activities have become a normal part of our time together.
These activities include wrestling, pillow fights, football and every other sport you can imagine. My boys just love to be active – and sometimes a little crazy. As a guy, I know how important this is, and I’m glad to join in with them.
I never expected to need a no-punching-in-the-face rule before having boys, yet – as crazy as it may seem to those of you without boys – it makes total sense in our house. Puncher guys is a game they started on their own, and while I didn’t want to shut it down, I just want to make sure that no one gets hurt. Sounds crazy, I know … but it works for us.
Since you’ve become a father, what are some of the things you’ve said that have surprised you? What things do you do with your kids that you never imagined you would? (I think most of us had a list of “My kids will never … ,” but that was before we actually had kids!) Love to hear what those are for you. Don’t leave me hanging … I know you’ve got some funny stories to contribute!
Jackson Dunn (@FocusMarriage) is a contributor for Dad Matters and the Director of Marriage and Family Formation at Focus on the Family.
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As a "guys guy" I never thought I'd hear myself saying "Sure sweetheart, I'd love another cup of tea. And yes, the pink cup will be fine!" But hey...as daddy to 3 beautiful girls (and one boy who will NEVER be allowed to play with tea party! LOL) that's just part of it! I also never thought I'd say that being a parent was even better than I thought it would be. But it is. God bless, fellas.
@MFeaster: Why would your son "NEVER" be allowed to play with tea party? As an adult heterosexual male, I find most of the life lessons I learned at my sisters' tea parties growing up still apply today: Good table manners, taking turns, please and thank you, etc.