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opting in
Check out Amy's book: Opting In: Having a Child Without Losing Yourself (read an excerpt)



I have a daughter and had come to this website to possibly find something for me on how to talk to my daughter (a child, not a teen), about feminism. Being a single father, I have found that there are very few resources for raising children that aren't written with women in mind. For the most part, the few resources that aren't gender specific are usually very scientific.

I actually wrote a book on parenting a few years ago—Opting In: Having a Child Without Losing Yourself—and I struggled with whether or not to call it “parenting” or “motherhood/fatherhood”—and I ultimately opted for the latter—not because I wanted to discount my hope that we would be having a parenting conversation, but because the precise problem I was identifying had to do with women's invisibility (except when it came to parenting), and I didn't want to render them further invisible by not acknowledging that mothers still did the majority of childrearing. And while I think I made the right decision for my particular book, I agree that more generally, we should expand the conversation.

In terms of resources for parenting your daughter, I would imagine that once you get past the titles, you would find that the information could apply to either a mother or father—more important is the information being relayed.

I agree that fathers aren't given enough space to be treated as equal parents, and I think that does a disserve to everyone—fathers, for making them feel invisible and less valuable, mothers, because it makes them think they have to shoulder it all, and kids, because it sets up gendered expectations. Luckily, I think kids can often see past all of this—and they know better.

You seem so aware and thus able to negotiate this space. How lucky your daughter is that you are thoughtfully trying to negotiate it all.




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