Name: Nick Washington | City: New Orleans, LA | IG: @w_nick12
What does being a father mean to you?
Being a father means everything to me, I center my life around what my daughter and my unborn son ( fiancé is pregnant with a baby boy ) means to me! Being a father means, protecting your children’s innocence, providing for them until their able to apply the knowledge and wisdom that you’ve instilled in them on their own. I’ve always viewed being a father as more than just a title, because from my own experience as a kid, I quickly found out that not every man who has kids are fathers.
Describe your experience with your father growing up and how that impacted you today.
My experience growing up with my father was a tough one. My father would often throw around the word “ love “ as if he meant it. The truth of the matter was that he said it so much, because his father never told him. The only catch was, he didn’t ever really show it. As a kid, I always wanted the attention of my father, but most black fathers during my childhood were addicted to running the streets. The thought of my father wanting to be in the streets more than in my life, broke me. As a result, even as a kid I knew I’d never allow my kids to experience pain emotionally and mentally from their father like I’d experience. I provide, protect, respect, uplift, communicate, and one of the most important spend time with my daughter and will continue those efforts with my future kids.
What things did you take from your experience growing up into your own fatherhood journey?
The things I have taken into my fatherhood journey are, to never ever allow you kids to feel like they aren’t wanted or loved. That is one of the single most worst feelings in the world. Also, to spend as much time with your kids as possible, because you can’t get that time back. Kids value time spent with their fathers. Tell your kids you love them and meant it, show it through your actions!
Have you had any obstacles on your fatherhood journey? If so, explain.
I’ve encountered many obstacles in my fatherhood journey. I went through a period of not being able to provide financially. For me, this was big because I grew up poor and I never wanted my family to experience a time like that. I was in college working on my bachelor’s degree and working part time. Well, I lost my job and fell behind in school. I knew I didn’t want my daughter to grow up and see her father as a failure. So I busted my tail, finding another job and finishing college strong with my Bachelors degree in Biology.
What advice would you give others new on their fatherhood journey?
The advice I’d give to fathers new on their journey is, spend time with your kids and let them know that you love them verbally and through action. Begin investing in their future while they are young!
If you wanted to write a quick letter to your father, starting with “Dear Father,” what would you say?
Dear Father, although we may not have the best relationship, I still love you. I understand that in life each person gets their chance to be an adult and we don’t always have the answers. So we make decisions and choices based on the current circumstances. I understand that during that time you made what you thought was the best decision for you and I respect that. We may never have a true conversation/intervention expressing our true thoughts and feelings for what did or didn’t happen in our relationship, but I’m resolved and I’m sure you are to as you have stated.
Name some other fathers you cosign.