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treated like they need more heþ

ers in parenting.When Ma¡shall leaves his


family for a week for worþ his wife Chris-
tine Gozdziak manages baby and household
on her own. But when she travels for worh
offers to heþ him pour in.
"When I go out of town, nobody notices,"
Marshall said. "\Mhen she leaves,people
are coming out of the woodwork to help, as
though a man home alone with a baby must
need heþ. I appreciate the heþ. But there's
the expectation that fathers dont do and
can't do ever¡hing a mother does."
\Mhen men are engaged in active parent-
ing and provide ph1'sical and emotional care,
educational involvement, consistent and
effective discipline and financial suPPort-
children reap a multitude ofbenefits,
induding enhanced cognitive development,
academic success and life comPetency'
Mc3ride said. Plus, it's also fun for the
fathers themselves.
Ch¡is Smith,38, of Paxton, started staþg
homewith his children after his second drild
was bom so his wife Gwen could go back to
work He tvas a sta¡at-home dad for about
' apar and said he loved being fully engaged
with his children.
"I got the kids readyin the moming,the likeþ to You either need to go out there Sustained support, especially from a sPouse'
forms of play and interaction with their chil- say,
laundry done, estimated Gwerls arrival for or you dorft. Make the choice and move on.' fora marls style of parenting gives them con-
dren are different than mothers. Fathers tend
dinner, and still had time to play [computer That's not bad just because it's different." ûdence to provide their children with quality
to present risk-taking situations that encour-
games] and take online classes,"he said. McBride stresseil th¿t it's important for care,MiBride said.
age tfieir kids to eryand their comfort zone
Chris and Gwen provide balance for their children to leam f,¡or¡¡ eagþ gareat's different He also said that society should "set up a
and oçlore the wodd, and they often include
children with different parenting styles-
a child in problem-solving activities. style ofparentiilg"l': ".'" "' , , frameworkwhere it is acceptable for men to
'1 think he's a really good and affection- 'Tf mothers or society comrirmicate that commit to their role as a parent just as we
Fathers also communicate with thefu chil-
ate dad," Gwen said. "But whereas I focus on the father's style is wrong, it makes it easy for expect them to commit to their qorkroles
dren diferently than mothers.
relationships, Chris is more of a rules Person them to backaway and not engage for tl¡e or ttreir relationships with their partners'"
Wf¡ile mothers often use e>rpressive and
and disciplinarian." long runr"he said. "There are different ways In fact, society should expect fathers to be
emotive words to describe a situation, fathers
Gwen said the children go to her for to parent and father, and we need to be ac- activeþ involved with their chldren, which
use more nouns and get straight to the point
comfort when theyïe ill, and they look to cepting of men where they're at and suPPort means caring for their children when they
"Ifa child is reticent to run out on the field
Chris when theywant to invent a game or them.We dorltwant all men to parent like all are sicþ meetingwith teachers about their
to play kickball, a mother might sa¡'Tell me
play outside.
why you dorit want to? Let's figure this out
- women.There's strength in diversity of styles child,and providing comfortwhen a child is
McBride said itt important for moth- kids are exposed to." frightened, he said. I
McBride said. "The father would be more
ers and society to acknowledge that fathers'

6 . Central Illinois Families