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4 Brothers Share: “What My Father Taught Me About Being A Man” (Father’s Day Tribute)

It’s almost Father’s Day and most of us are geared up to toast the men that are responsible for making us who we are.  We thought this would be a perfect time to reach out to the Brothers in the BLF community and find out how their Father’s influenced them to be the men they are today.

Enjoy, and Happy Father’s Day from Team BLF!

1. Trey Gilmore [Charlotte, NC)Relationship Status: Married, 10 years

Responsibility of a father:

“The sons are going to emulate what they see in you. It’s important to keep that mind to do the right thing because they’re watching.”

1.   What has your father or role model taught you about the responsibilities of man?

My father and his father were very instrumental in my rearing through example and word. They were very involved in their kid’s lives as well as the community. It was a very well rounded hands-on approach to be provided so that when I grew up I wanted to be like my father and grandfather. I was determined to be a great father. Even after my divorce I had custody of all the children upon marrying my current. I felt strongly about the role, parent’s play in raising their children.

2.   What has your son taught you about being a father?

The sons are going to emulate what they see in you. It’s important to keep that mind to do the right thing because they’re watching.

3. How has this relationship affected your approach to a romantic relationship?

In retrospect it was more about respecting. My parents never really argued they disagreed. I’m not a person who believes in arguing or raising your voice at one another. Within a relationship you need understanding and be willing to compromise so it wants be a big scene. I would want my mate to be happy.

4. Outside of your first time having sex, when EXACTLY did you know your were a man?

You’re a man when you are living on your own and responsible for your own things. When I graduated from high school and went to college I considered myself a man because I was on my own.

2. John Peek [Atlanta, GA]Relationship Status: Divorced

Responsibility of a father:

One has to be responsible and hard working individual to be a leader of the family.”

1.   What has your father or role model taught you about the responsibilities of man?

My father, grandfather, and uncles taught me one has to be responsible and hard working individual to be a leader of the family. Be faithful be a God-fearing man.

2.   What has your son taught you about being a father?

My son has taught me it is always good to set a good example if I want him one day to be a good father himself. Always be accountable for what I say and do around him when he was young. Never be afraid to question him if he does something I don’t like. He holds me accountable.

3. How has this relationship affected your approach to a romantic relationship?

My children have been quite encouraging because I’ve been divorced for about 15 years. My daughter told me on my birthday last year, “it’s okay if you get married again.” Peek stated, “Why do you say that?” She said, “because I don’t want you to be old and lonely.” Peek stated, “Well, what makes you think I’ll be old and lonely.” She said, “Because I feel that you haven’t moved on because you may be afraid of how we may think or feel.” Peek stated, “No I’m just being cautious because I don’t want to make it a career of getting married every two years and next time I get married it’s for life. The first time you do something wrong your suppose to learn from it.”

4. Outside of your first time having sex, when EXACTLY did you know your were a man?

When I graduated from the US Army boot camp at the age of eighteen, because of the independence and I was able to do something that many others weren’t able to. I also received a lot of respect from my father because he was totally against me going into the military. He said, “I don’t need to do this and that.” I told him, “dad I can’t be a man in your house.” I reminded him of something he told my mother when I was six when I wanted to get a dollar every time I cut the grass. My mother was against it because she thought I was too young. My father told her, “Never stand in the way of a man that wants to work.” I told him when I was graduating from boot camp of that story.

3.Richard Byrd [Charlotte, NC]

Relationship Status: Married, 20 years

Responsibility of a father:

“Your word is all you have let your yes be yes and your no be no’s. If I tell you I’m going to do something then that’s what I’m going to do.”

1.   What has your father or role model taught you about the responsibilities of man?

I didn’t grow up with my father it was an old deacon when I was about 20 or 21 years old that told me, “that your word is all you have let your yes be yes and your no be no’s. If I tell you I’m going to do something then that’s what I’m going to do.” It was incredible because this guy couldn’t really speak good English and you could tell that he didn’t have a college education or may be even a high school education. But he taught me in two weeks what it was like to be in a relationship and to be a man. Whatever you say you’re going to do make sure you do it and follow through on your responsibilities, it changed my life!

2.   What has your sons taught you about being a father?

5 boys The interesting thing about being a father is understanding that you can’t solve every problem. Now that my boys are older my youngest one is13 and my oldest is 20 I’ve had to change from being the protector to being the adviser. That’s been an interesting change. My kids have taught me to have fun and not to take life so seriously just the responsibility of taking care of other people.

3. How has this relationship affected your approach to a romantic relationship?

Here’s what I tell my boys you treat every woman you come in contact with respect. We call it the bird treatment so I just finished with the third one he went to the prom with his friend and not his girlfriend, but he still had to buy her a rose and open doors. You have to be a gentleman when you take a lady out. It’s all about the experience. When I take my sons out its about creating memories. I want them to create memories for the young ladies they are with. My thirteen year old I don’t know if he’s been listening but we’ve been getting him in shape over the last couple of months. It’s really about being a gentleman and when a lady leaves you she has to compare every other man after you to you in a positive way that’s the goal.

4. Outside of your first time having sex, when EXACTLY did you know your were a man?

About 35-36 and I am 41 now. I really think I just got it. I’ve done a lot of things at a young age but that real understanding of maturity was when I was 35 and when I hit 40 it was like oh wow! I’ve really been running my head against the wall these forty years. I think a man really hits that stride around 33 and 35.

 

4. A. Jeffery Wallace [Atlanta, GA]Relationship Status: Divorced

Responsibility of a man:

If you can’t be dependable and reliable you can’t be respected, in this life we’re not worried about you being liked we worried about you being respected.”

1.  What has your father or role model taught you about the responsibilities of man?

My biological father passed away a month before I was born. I was taught manhood under the guidance of my godfather, who was also my great uncle and my mentor who was also my neighbor. My godfather and my mentor is Sylvester Clarke they basically taught me about manhood is that, “your word is your bond.” You have to be accountable for what you say and accountable for what you do that was the basic platform of being a man, just honor your word. If you can’t be dependable and reliable you can’t be respected, in this life we’re not worried about you being liked we worried about you being respected. That was huge for me.

The second thing they taught me was to take care of the home. As a man you have to learn to take care of the house. I’m pretty good with my hands from preparing things to maintaining things. Be handy with the house and cars. As a man you should learn to do the basic carpentry of the house. Those two men not only discussed it with me but also showed me. They truly led by example. These were the two constant men in my life they were very consistent with how they maintained their home with dignity and respect. They were dedicated to their wives. My godfather was dedicated to his wife until he passed and Mr. Clarke is still dedicated to his only wife and he’s about 87 years old and we still talk to this day. They were very much involved in church and the foundation of whom God is in and the importance of having a relationship with God.

There is one part of will and one part of desire that you have to be willing to grow and learn and be guided. I was always hungry for information and growth.

2. How has this relationship affected your approach to a romantic relationship?

Being raised under the tutelage of these men I valued relationships. I said it’s vitally important to me for children to be raised in a two-parent home. So when I got married I told my wife we are going to have fun and travel try to mesh our lives together for two years. If you are going to bring another life in it takes away from your two lives and if you’re not on one accord it creates confusion with that child we are not going to have children for the first two years until we get ourselves together collectively.

Until I’m able to find that right woman that is like-minded and could move our family to the next level of spirituality and culture understanding I wasn’t having it.

3. Outside of your first time having sex, when EXACTLY did you know your were a man?

When I was eighteen years old I was on the bus going to the military. Every decision I made was based on me. As I headed to my base I realized I was on my own. I was a leader with my ROTC rank, but I realized I was a man because I was responsible for others. I was prepared over the years to take on this responsibility. I realized that this was a man responsibility, accountability and your word. I was prepared for that from my upbringing.

My mom was a great asset of it to. Even though she was a woman she had an idea of what a man should be. She articulated her perspective of what a man should be and she allowed these other men to influence me in a way that was positive. So she released me and it benefited her. I took the role of being the responsible one in the house from house repairs to other things. It was a threefold thing and my village was strong.

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Delisha Easley

Delisha Easley

Delisha Easley is an individual that inspires others to LIVE. Easley’s passion is to see others changed by the knowledge or insight she may say or write. Easley is using her voice to revolutionize a generation!