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Deal with it, dad!

While we all love our fathers, here are a few things that we wish they could learn to understand us better and keep up with the times.

india Updated: Jun 18, 2012 18:05 IST
Nirmika Singh
Nirmika Singh
Hindustan Times

As kids, most of us grow up believing that our dads are the best. And even though that may be true, papas could do with a little brushing up here and there to become the big daddies of the 21st century. So here are a few things we wish our father would learn, the sooner the better.

Be more tech savvy
Ask any teenager or young adult and this wish is sure to top the list of things they want their daddies to learn. And our mini research reveals that there are degrees in the wide category of technologically challenged dads. While some can’t get beyond pressing the ‘on’ button of the laptop, the more savvy ones struggle to deal with apps on their smartphones. “I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve taught my dad to check his email. But he struggles every time he has to do it all by himself,” says 21-year-old student Smriti Saxena, who stays away from home and hopes to someday use Skype or even chat with her 51-year-old dad in Hyderabad.

Dress cooler
It really wouldn’t hurt our dads to chuck their boring shirts and pleated trousers and sported denims and T-shirts instead.
“My dad couldn’t care less about what he wears. In fact, he asks why he should ‘dress up’ at his age. I try and give him fashion tips to dress better,” says Zaheer Chauhan, a 23-year-old media professional. Adds Riya Sharma, a 19-year-old student .“My dad is in his forties, yet he dresses way beyond his age. I just hope it changes soon, and he learns that just because he’s a dad, he doesn’t have to dress

Take a break
How many times have you had to postpone family holidays or even quick weekend getaways due to your dad’s never-ending professional commitments? If you have a dad who works late hours or doesn’t seem to ever take a break from work, it’s not surprising that you want him to learn to unwind. “With the kind of work he does, my dad deserves a holiday at least every six months. But he doesn’t realise this. I wish he could relax more often and go on holidays either with my mom or with the entire family,” says 25-year-old photographer Ravish Nath, about his father who is a marketing manager in a local firm.

Get fitter, not fatter
While we can’t expect our fathers to sport six-packs, a slightly smaller beer belly would do just fine. And even though the sight of middle- aged or even older parents sweating out at gyms is not uncommon, many kids wish that their fathers could be a little more serious with their fitness routine.

“My dad feels better after gymming, but he is not regular with his workouts. So I make it a point to drag him along whenever I’m off to the gym,” says Chauhan.

Share a drink
An outing to a bar with your dad can be an ice-breaker of sorts. And if you haven’t done it yet, there’s never going to be a better time to do it. Twenty-year-old software engineer Aakash Singh felt that the quality time spent with his dad helped both loosen up, “ I’ve always been the rebel in my family. But the day I actually sat with my dad in a bar, it was like an eye-opener. He talked at length about life, its struggles and successes. The drinks worked for both of us and got us closer.”

Trust my friends
“My dad suspects every guy friend of mine to be a good-for-nothing loafer. Once he was shocked when I invited home my friend who sports several tattoos and piercings. Parents tend to be overly judgemental at times, and that has to change,” says junior college student Sia Parmar, 18. Dads can’t stop being dads, can they? Adds 20-year-old college student Sadik Kapadia, “My father feels that I keep bad company even when there is nothing to worry about. I guess, he can’t help stressing for
no reason.”
(Some names have been changed on request.)

First Published: Jun 18, 2012 12:46 IST