Ladies and gentlemen, I have a question for you: how do you feel and react when a man looks at your child/ren and smiles?
You can leave me your answer, along with any related musings, in the comment box at the bottom of this here page.
Here is why I ask:
Every weekday at lunch time I leave my office and I walk to ASDA to buy a banana. I have to go every day to buy my banana, because I’m extremely picky about the ripeness of the bananas I eat. Unless they’re just past the point of being green they make me feel physically sick.
But this is not a post about my banana based foibles.
This is a post about me being made to feel awkward on a regular basis.
Recently, on my trip to ASDA, I smiled at a baby in a trolley. I did this because I like babies. You may have noticed this. I am the son of a broody mother and a broody father. Broody is bred into me like respiratory problems are bred into English Bulldogs.
When I see a baby (unless it’s an ugly one) I go all mushy like an over-ripe banana. I want to say hello. I want to hold it and cuddle it and look after it. I want to tell its parents how beautiful it is and how lucky they are.
|Inhalers are just out of shot.|
Whenever it happens I feel immediately like I need to run away and hide. Needless to say, I don’t much want accusations of paedophilia being thrown my way while I’m out shopping. Nor do I want anyone thinking I’m a potential kidnapper.
The glances don’t just make me feel awkward. They make me feel sad. Sad that the first thought in a lot of people’s heads is not “oh, he thinks my baby is cute”, it is “oh, that man means some harm to my baby”.
I’m not a woman, so I don’t know whether this happens to women. Maybe it does. But I wonder whether this is actually one of the few occasions where men are on the receiving end of gender discrimination.
So what’s the deal? Do I need to stop smiling at babies, reign in my natural gooey tendencies? I certainly don’t want everybody to stop smiling at
Cam. He seems to like it, and it makes me feel proud of having a lovely little boy.
Thanks for reading.
Thanks for reading.