The May 2008 issue of Parents magazine featured a small section entitled, "Who's Your Hero?" Kids answered in the typical fashion citing their Dad, Mom, teachers, etc. But one answer really struck me. Six year-old David replied, "I don't have a hero."

A World Without Heros

Now, I don't know anything about this kid except his name is David and he is six years-old. I don't know why he doesn't have a hero, but I just can't imagine a six year-old boy not having one. If we were to learn more about David I suspect we would discover he has a sad home life, and probably comes from a broken home. Unfortunately, I grew up without a dad, too, but my grandfather more than made up for my own father's parental shortcomings. In many ways my grandfather is my hero, and I cherish the time I spent with him growing up, and the things he taught me along the way.

Young David's response is a wake up call to fathers everywhere - kids need heros in their lives. Even if you are separated from your child's mother because of divorce, there is no reason you still can't be their hero. The qualifications are surprisingly easy. Just be present in their lives, and take an interest in the things that interest them. I remember growing up the few occasions I did get to spend time with my dad were strained because he didn't really know me. He didn't know my likes and dislikes, and I think he found it hard to communicate with this little stranger with whom he had so little in common.

Get to Know Your Kids

I always wanted to be a dad, and I vowed at an early age to be involved in their lives no matter what. No one was going to keep me from knowing my children. I'm proud to say that my wife and I have been married for ten years, and we have two wonderful kids. I know everything there is to know about them. I know their dreams, their fears, even their favorite color of Play-Dough! I like to think they will grow up and see me as their hero. After all, it is a most coveted title!