I've spent a lot of time trying to figure out why my dad could and would abandon me and my mother. This is something that gnaws at you, like termites in your soul that don't go away.
Then several years ago, my son Justin and I were at a Promise Keepers event at Soldier Field in Chicago. That's where we met Dr. Ken Canfield, the author of The Heart of a Father. His National Center for Fathering has done some groundbreaking research on the role of dad in their children's lives.
The book talks about how fathering practices, attitude and emotions are passed from generation to generation, from dad to son to grandson and on down the line.
It made me think about my father and what he got from his dad. I bet he drew the short dad straw. He never learned how to deal with the challenge of having your back against the wall or how to have effective relationships.
He makes the point that a dad needs to look at how he was fathered and if he has any beefs with his dad, he needs to settle them.
The book goes on to outline best practices for fathering kids. It's really good stuff. More later.