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Don’t be THAT Guy!!!

July 28, 2011

Coach Will Ferrell and Da Coach having a "discussion"

I cannot remember if Will Ferrell won an Oscar for his depiction of a hyper caffeinated, ultra competitive youth soccer coaching in the movie Kickin’ and Screaming.  Well, maybe not…but it is worth watching if you have not seen it.    My point is that Will Ferrell is THAT guy that everyone wants to turn away from, including his kids.  He is the boorish lout who blusters and bullies his way through life.  He is totally unaware of how his behavior is embarrassing and alienating his own kids.  His complete self absorption makes it difficult for him to get close to his kids.

I know what you’re thinking, “Phew, I am glad I am not like Will Ferrell.”  Not so fast my friend.  We as fathers, probably do not act in the egregious manner of Will Ferrell, but I think we do things that damage our relationships with our kids, especially as they get older.  Here is a little quiz.  In the last year, have you done any of the following in the presence of your children:   1)  berated an umpire or official at a youth sports event  2) gone nuts on a fellow motorist who is an “idiot”  3)  told a really embarrassing/hurtful story about your kid in the presence of family or friends  4) completely disregarded your kid’s feelings/opinion on a topic that is important to him/her  5) gone off on your spouse with your kid present.  All of these things will tend to move us further away from our kids.

All of us make mistakes, so I am not talking about being perfect.  I am talking about a pattern of behavior where we become THAT guy.  Our children withdraw from us, avoid us and become sullen.  Why?  Because they are hurt and angry. If you are getting the silent treatment from your kids or the 10,000 mile empty stare, it is probably time to take stock of your own behavior.  Our children are dying for encouragement and validation from us as fathers.  When they do not receive it, bad things happens. So, take a moment, reflect on your behavior and set your course towards encouragement and you will never become that guy.



Patrick Donohue is a life coach in Oak Park, IL

3 Comments leave one →
  1. marc abel permalink
    July 28, 2011 9:01 pm

    Pat (po-do!), love the blog. thanks for sharing.


  2. August 4, 2011 9:03 am

    Great job Pat! Keep up the great work!
    cheers, Michael

  3. August 10, 2011 12:44 am

    Good to see your commitment to helping other dads Patrick. great stuff.

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