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My Daughter Can’t Talk But She’s Already Insulted My Manhood

The following was syndicated from Woke Dad for The Fatherly Forum, a community of parents and influencers with insights about work, family, and life. If you’d like to join the Forum, drop us a line at [email protected].

In the spirit of feminism, my wife and I took the girls to the “2017 Women’s March” in New York City. The girls were each wearing “feminist” onesies, which were a big hit at the march. A lot of photos subsequently popped up online. A photo of me holding Penny ended up on Reddit. Most of the comments were positive, but some opinionated commenters poorly disguised their misogyny with concern for my child’s welfare. “A protest march is no place to take a child!”

Moreover, Woke Dad (my blog) has steadily grown to over 12,000 followers … which is apparently when the trolls come marching in. These particular rabble-rousers seem to oppose the concept of feminism — equating it with cancer and referring to my 6-month-old girls as sluts. They also take pleasure in mocking me as a stay-at-home dad, and seem to be overly obsessed with my sex life — they’re fairly certain that my wife has a boyfriend, and that I enjoy watching her have sex with other men. As if we have time to partake in such decadent delights.

In the meantime, I recently had a spirited conversation with Clementine about feminism and what it means to be feminist.

“Daddy, I don’t wanna be a feminist.”

“Why not, sweetie?”

“I have no interest in consuming the flesh of men.”

“You don’t?”

“No!

“Sweetie, don’t sweat it. You don’t even have teeth yet — it’ll be awhile before we introduce you to solid food.”

“Daddy, yuck! Never ever ever!

“Why not?”

“Turns out, I actually enjoy the company of men.”

“I’m just playing, sweetie. Trust me, feminism has nothing to do with eating man flesh.”

“Phew! Then, what’s the big deal?”

“About feminism?”

“Yes, can you unpack it for me, daddy?”

“Sure, sweetie. At its core, feminism is about equality between the sexes.”

“And that’s controversial?”

“Yes, some men still believe that a woman’s place is in the home — subservient to the husband.”

“Where’d they get that idea?”

“The Bible, for starters — “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife.”

“So, you and mommy are living in sin?”

“What? How so?”

“Clearly, mommy is the head of the home.”

“No, sweetie — we operate as co-equals.”

“Psshaw! Daddy, that’s impossible — what if you disagree? Someone has to have the final say.”

“We almost always agree, but if we can’t, the person more affected by the decision has the final say.”

“How do you determine who’s more affected?”

“What do you mean, sweetie?”

“Okay. Let’s say you want another baby, and mommy doesn’t. Who’s more affected?”

“Clearly, your mother. She’s the one who has to suffer through another pregnancy.”

“Sure, but that’s just the short term. If you’re really desperate for another child, you could be upset for the rest of your life.”

“Well, sweetie, we could always adopt.”

“Hmmm, I’d like to be consulted on that decision.”

“Ha! You’re barely a person — certainly not a co-equal.”

“Whatever, daddy. I’ve got another scenario for you: Let’s say you get a chance to open for Louis CK on the same night that mom is invited to have dinner with Sigmund Freud. It’s a make-or-break, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for each of you — but you can’t find a sitter. Who stays home?”

“Freud?”

“Yes, the dead guy — unless you can think of a famous living psychologist.”

“Uhhh…”

sigmund-freud

Wikimedia Commons

“Geez, daddy! It’s a friggin hypothetical — just go with it.”

“Okay. Okay. In that case, I guess we’d have to flip a coin.”

“Ha! That’s ridiculous, daddy. After all that you’ve sacrificed for your career … you’d be willing to leave it all up to chance?”

“Yes, sweetie. It’s a hard truth, but we all have to sleep in the bed we make.’

“Bollocks, daddy! Absolute bollocks! If you lost the coin flip, you’d be consumed with jealousy and resentment.”

“Of course! But that’s still better than a patriarchal dictatorship, in which the wife is resigned to a life of quiet suffering.”

“I’m sorry, daddy — I just don’t believe you. You’re a MAN! PROVIDING and PROTECTING is your identity! Remember all the attention mom got when she was pregnant? She’ll always have that in her pocket. She knows what it’s like to create something greater than herself and bask in that glory. What about your glory? Shouldn’t you have that opportunity?”

“Meh.”

“Daddy, I’m all for equal treatment, but I don’t believe the complete obliteration of gender roles helps to achieve that ideal.”

“Wow, sweetie. It seems like you’ve really given a lot of thought to this.”

“I have, daddy. I’ve also been thinking about the name of your website?”

“Woke Dad?”

“Yes, I think you should change the name to Cuck Dad.”

“You SOB! I can’t believe you just said that! Where did you even learn that word?”

“Mom’s boyfriend.”

Fans of Dean Masello’s sly wit and deadpan demeanor might be surprised to know that the former attorney struggles daily to control a variety of ailments, including anxiety, sleepwalking, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. While these traits wreak havoc in his personal life, on stage, he harnesses his unique worldview to create the brilliantly insightful social commentary that has made him one of the industry’s most respected young talents. In his spare time, he’s a stay-at-home parent for his newborn twin girls.