Name: Darien Peterson | City: San Diego, CA | IG: @Olskoocoupe

What does being a father mean to you?

Being a father to me means providing my children with the necessary tools to be successful in life emotionally, spiritual, physically, mentally & financially. It also means protecting and educating my children about the world we currently live through my lens, but allowing them to maneuver & learn about the world through their own lens.

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Describe your experience with your father growing up and how that impacted you today.

I come from a non tradition back ground, so I have a Biological Father and my Dad. My Biological Father wasn’t around until I was about 6 so my dad assumed that role when I was 2.

Both were great providers in their respected households. My Dad put me in sports and attended all my games. My Biological Father was the fun parent, we went to assument parks, beaches and so on. Although they tried not to be, they were both emotionally walled, showing love more through providing them with words or hugs. Both very stubborn and had a, “I’m the parent, your the child” way of doing things, regardless if they were right or wrong.

I would say my Father’s parenting styles impacted me by wanting to provide my children with more affection & listening more while also maintaining the structure my Father’s provided for me.

What things did you take from your experience growing up into your own fatherhood journey?

The main thing I think I took from growing up into my Fatherhood journey is, it’s okay to make mistakes. I want so bad to be the perfect father, but I know there will be something I do they won’t like. So I just pray my kids and I have the comfortablity to talk about what’s bothering us about each other in a respectable way. Last thing I want is bottled up emotions, life is tough enough already for added stress.

Have you had any obstacles on your fatherhood journey?

I’m still really early in my journey, so I haven’t had many pitfalls yet. My daughter is still young and I have one on the way. I think the toughest obstacles I’ve encountered thus far is, disciplining my daughter. I don’t want to spank my kids and she is too young I feel for spanking anyway but I still want her to know when she has done something wrong.

What advice would you give others new on their fatherhood journey?

My advice I would give to other Father’s is there are no preset rules to follow to make you a good Father. Everyone is different, not every child responds the same to every technique. Be open to advice but don’t feel the need to be anyone other than who your child needs you to be.

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If you could write a quick letter to your father, starting with “Dear Father,” what would you say?

Dear Dad,

I appreciate everything you have done for me. Assuming the responsibility as a Father to another mans child is something I will forever be indebted to you for. Thank you introducing me to sports, as it still keeps me grounded and focused. I pray that one day, you will be able to look at yourself in the mirror and know that despite the things you have been through, you are a good person and it’s okay to be happy. I pray that you are able to listen and calmly respond to those with differing options than you to solidify relationships.

Dear Jim,
I want to thank you for being there for me when I got older. For always helping me out of tight spots when I had no other way out. I thank you for the countless Disney and Six Flags trips which have become tradition that will now be passed onto my children. I pray that you are able to let go of the hurt in your life and be able to put your pride aside to be a better person for yourself and the people that love you.

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