The stereotype of the traditional family — where the father goes off to work every day while the mother stays home and cares for the children and the house — is, fortunately, becoming less and less common. Modern families often see both partners and parents working and equally sharing responsibilities around the home and family, and we're seeing fathers as equal partners in parenting who are embracing their roles as active parents.
Unfortunately, while most people are happy to see men being active participants in their children's lives, there are some who feel that fathers who care for their children and even change their diapers are somehow less masculine for doing so. In a now-viral Reddit post, Redditor WhoAmI_ElishaOtia posted a picture of a sticker attached to a changing table that read, " -Warning- This is another example of the feminization of the American Male." The post was titled "Saw some Dad shaming at our local Rural King. Caring for your kids makes you more of a man, not less of one," and fortunately most of the commenters agreed.
"The sticker applier has never changed a diaper on a filthy bathroom floor before," wrote one Redditor. "Alt-right Incel who secretly craves having a family of their own but is too much of a loser to be able to have any chance to get laid, let alone procreate," wrote another.
The sticker prompted hundreds of comments from men who are annoyed and frustrated at the lack of proper baby changing accommodations in men's rooms. Florida father Donte Palmer helped raise the issue last September when he posted a picture of himself trying to change his son without the use of a changing table, calling for establishments to have changing tables in men and ladies restrooms.
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This is a serious post!!! What’s the deal with not having changing tables in men’s bathroom as if we don’t exist!! #FLM #fatherslivesmatter clearly we do this often because look how comfortable my son is. It’s routine to him!!!! Let’s fix this problem! I Kaepernick drop a knee to this issue! @theshaderoom let’s show the innovation of fathers! #squatforchange
Singer John Legend recently teamed up with Pampers on their Love the Change campaign, which is hoping to provide 5,000 Koala Kare changing tables for public restrooms across the United States and Canada by 2021.
So while the sticker-applier thinks that men actually parenting their children is causing the 'feminization of the American Male,' most American males couldn't disagree more. The comments on the Reddit post illustrate that many men want to be more active in their children's upbringing, dirty diapers and all.
As one commenter said, "If you're a willing and involved parent - you won't wait around for your spouse or hired help to change the diaper of a crying, uncomfortable infant, full stop. You get in there and do the deed because you want to be this kid's parent, you care about their well being and frankly, changing diapers is nowhere near as awful and traumatic as dumb movies and tv shows make it out to be where hapless, witless dads who don't know what they're in for when it comes to childcare get all decked out in makeshift, homemade haz-mag gear and juuust make it out alive. You love your kids, you do this for them, and more, and much worse...without question - and the insane notion that it's feminizing us is the stuff of irrational, misguided narcissists who lack empathy and reason," they wrote.
"I feel bad that seeing other dads taking care of their kids makes this person this mad, that they go through the effort of putting this sticker up in public places. The fear they feel from their tenuous grip on their erroneous sense of high status as 'a man' that is threatened by dudes showing compassion for their kids...what a horrible and miserable way to be going about one's life, every day."