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Fathers and Sons


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Fathers and SonsIt’s a relatively unsung relationship but one which has tremendous significance for the maturing of boys into men. How fathers and sons relate to each other is really how many things are decided within the family – the respect that is given to women, the sense of responsibility that develops in the boys, the amount of love and caring and genuine sharing that can be expressed within the family structure.

“My father was really a silent kind of guy when I was growing up,” recalls Matthew, senior executive in a large travel company. “He would not be the life and soul of any party, for sure. He was also one who laughed rarely. But there was a definite kindness about him. While there was nothing we could do without his approval, I hardly ever saw him putting his foot down unreasonably. That is the reason my sisters and I could grow up without too much fear of him. Later in life, as I grew more mature, I began to understand the deep love my father must have had for us, still has, actually, and I began to regret that I had not tried to know him a little better.”

Mothers anchor families by the sheer number of chores they perform on a daily basis for their children. Because children spend more time around their mothers, it is natural they become very attached to them. But the love we share with our fathers is a more subtle thing. If we do not take care, we would have missed many opportunities to express and expand this love, both, when we are children, and when we become fathers.

For a boy, his father’s love is like a trust his father has in him, to grow up and be a good adult. Many things challenge this trust – the boy’s own rebellious nature and desire to prove his independence, the father’s own conditioning of a previous generation that sometimes turns him rigid, the sometimes competitive nature of the mother’s affection for her son. But if the love and trust is deep, the boy grows into a confident adult grateful for the model of manhood his father provided him.

“My mother left my father when I was twelve, because of his excessive drinking,” recalls Sanjoy, a young lawyer. “She took me and my sister with her, and we moved to a different city. I hated my father back then. I also hated all drinkers – still don’t drink out of a reaction to what I saw in the early years. After I had graduated, and was working as a trainee in a firm while getting my law degree – I remember, when I must have been twenty two, I went back to meet my father and my paternal family. What I saw of him shocked me. He seemed to have shrunk. The drinking had taken a toll on his health, but he was not drinking then. Earlier I had no hesitation in classifying him as a ‘loser’. But now I could see that under all the bluster of his drinking days, he was actually an emotional and affectionate man. Since that time, we have had an off and on relationship. I sent him money from my first salary. My sister went and met him with her husband after she got married.” For Sanjoy, his father’s personality had actually shown him how not to be when he was an impressionable boy, then evoked his love and compassion when he was older.

Fathers come in all shapes and sizes. Some seem like Superman, and some are just plain ‘Daddy’ to be bullied for treats at the supermarket. Yet, all are dear. And for their sons, fathers are often a blueprint for living.

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Responses to Fathers and Sons

  1. 1 Prof.Rama Kant

    I appreciate your sentiments .Although we are not able to understand even motherhood which is always much closer to us but father-son/father-daughter relationship is hardly understood.It is peculiar, close but distant and often leaves long range and timed effects.But by the time they understand their father, most of the time it is too late and becomes almost meaningless.
    I am in process of writinga A book on this unique relationship entitled “OH! My son, please come” in Hindi vernaculars”OH!MERE LAL AAJAA”
    Thank

  2. 2 padda a s

    very useful and informative.this article should be read by the younger generation.

  3. 3 S Lakshmikanthan

    It is really very good article. Each and every person should read this then they realise the value of parents.

    It is really good.

  4. 4 R N SHUKLA

    Excellent

  5. 5 Amit Joshi

    Wonderful article. This actually shall help to chage the way you look at your Father & also give you a new attitude.
    Thanks for this article…

  6. 6 Mohammed Safeer

    Very nice and useful photo. Excellent.

  7. 7 bhagya muralidharan

    excellent very nice article.

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