Thursday, March 26, 2009

For Dads Only

Last week, in response to my post looking for dad-centric product review, reader Monique wrote in the comments that dad-specific product reviews sounded awfully close the mirror image of the kind of mom-only attitude that drives me bonkers when it comes to parenting magazines.

It is a fair comment, but one that's worth a response.

I don't think it's ever a very good idea to have a single-sex discussion of parenting. Blocking dads (or moms) from a conversation serves no logical purpose; childrearing and the related challenges don't discriminate based on sex, so a just-moms or just-dads approach is meaninglessly exclusionary.

That doesn't mean that moms and dads don't have different viewpoints, or that those differences shouldn't be broadcast. In fact, the more voices we have out there, the better. The problem with the parenting magazines is not that there are pieces that speak directly to mothers, it's that there are *only* pieces that speak directly to mothers.

This is what's great about the blog world. You can read a Laid-Off Dad post and get one perspective, click over to Dooce for another, and keep clicking until you have a pretty good feel for what parenting in 2009 is all about. I think one of the voices that is lacking is a great dad product blogger. Not just a guy who will write on remote controls or the relative merits of manly, high-end tricycles, but someone who will bring a fresh view to everything from breast pumps to the relative merits of P.D. Eastman. The more people we have -- and the more backgrounds represented -- the better that conversation will be.

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