George Bernard II Says “You are your son’s first example of how a man should move”

Name: George Bernard II City: Waldorf, MD | Instagram: @george_btv

What does being a father mean to you?

Being a father is one of the most important roles some of us will ever have. You are your son’s first example of how a man should move, and your daughter’s first example of what type of man to choose. Like everything else in life, it comes with it’s challenges and unforeseen obstacles, but the rewards and much larger than the headaches. Being a father means doing your best to keep every single promise you make. It means finding balance between that fine line of being stern and being compassionate. Being a father requires you to have patience and understanding. The list goes on, and on, however, the most important job that you have as a father is making sure that your children are properly prepared to handle, survive, and prosper in the world once you are gone.
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Describe your experience with your father growing up and how that impacted you today.

Growing up, I always looked up to my father. I still do today. Although I didn’t always feel like listening to his lectures, I always heard him, and his messages always stuck. I use to watch him get up every Saturday morning and start his yard work, wash my mother’s car, go to the grocery store etc. As an adult with my own family, I find myself doing all of the same things.

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

One of the things that I do regret, is the feeling of not being able to talk to my father about certain issues. I never really considered my father necessarily strict, but his ideology of being as close to perfect as possible, sometimes made it hard to believe that he was once a child/teen. Because of that, I try my best to push my kids towards being the best versions of themselves, but also explaining to them that it is okay to make mistakes……just don’t make the same mistake twice.

Have you had any obstacles on your fatherhood journey? If so, explain.

One of the biggest challenges I came across was figuring out what my role was once my daughter came home from the hospital. It was very important to her mother that she breastfeed. She did not want to use a pump unless she had to, so I was very supportive of that. Only problem with that is Dad misses out on those intimate feeding times with the baby. I had to find other ways to bond with my daughter, like giving her a bath, washing her hair, and changing her diaper…..pretty much all of the things that my daughter hated as a newborn. She cried so much that it felt like she hated daddy. All she wanted to do is be on mommy’s breast….or at least within reaching distance. Every time I held her she would cry, and mommy would come to the rescue saying, “give her to me, I’ll take her”. The most important part of this journey, whether you’re still with Mom or not, is communication. I explained that my daughter and I needed that alone time to bond. I asked her to not come running to take her so quickly when she cries, give me a chance to figure out my own ways to console her. She agreed, and as a result I became a swaddle master; I learned that my daughter shares the same love for Michael Jackson’s music as I do, and I also figured out that it was easier to put her to sleep in the mancave (she’s two now and that’s still her favorite place to be). I cherished our alone time and talks on the way to daycare (I still do). As time went by we became even closer, especially after she was weaned off of her mother’s breast. Today she’s pretty much attached to my hip.

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

Be patient. Also ask questions. None of us, (including our fathers), has this thing called fatherhood completely figured out. We are all collectively learning and trying to improve everyday. Whether or not you chose to be a part of this fraternity doesn’t matter…….you’re here now, and you owe it to yourself, and you owe it to your babies to be the best father you can possibly be.

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

Dear Father, thank you……thank so much for the lessons, thank you so much for scolding, thank you so much for the love that you not only displayed for me and my sisters, but also my mom. You are a major part of who I am as a man, and who I am as a father. I love you Dad.


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Dear Fathers is The Premiere Media Platform dedicated to telling stories of black fathers from all angles.

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