POLOKWANE, SA – Hello my name is Mzo Madolo. I’m a Child Maintenance Prosecutor, Radio Presenter and co-founder of U2 Kids Magazine launching soon. The term “point man” is used in the military. A point man is a soldier selected on a particular mission to lead the troops through enemy territory. The point man takes charge and everybody else follows behind him. This, is how I see fatherhood.
A point man must make sure the troops take a safe route, avoid being ambushed, avoid land mines and bring the troops safely back to base. If the point man is not focused, people may lose their lives. If he messes up or makes a mistake the whole team may fall into the hands of the enemy. The team must learn to trust the point man because their lives depend on his decisions. If they don’t trust him they cannot follow him.
This world can be a dangerous place. Enemies in various forms; bad influences, physical dangers, emotional scars, mediocrity, low self-esteem, peer pressure and more, are lurking at every corner. As a father, I am the point man for my family.
I have to take charge, take the lead and have my family, especially my kids follow close behind. As the point man I have to guide my kids in this wild world into a safe future, filled with success, joy, peace, productivity, self-control, excellence and maturity.
It is my duty as a father to help my kids navigate life responsibly, wisely, safely and successfully. I must help them recognize danger from afar, avoid harm and pursue what is good.
Trusting the point man
For me to successfully guide my kids through life they must trust me, and I must earn their trust and respect. I must be their hero, whom they seek to emulate and learn from. I can teach my kids all I want, but if they do not trust me, it will all be in vain.
They will trust their friends opinions more than they trust my advice. So the first and most important thing to aim for as a father is to earn your children’s trust and respect.
How does one earn his children’s trust? You have to make sure they know that you love them, care for them, and are present with them. They have to see this and know it, this will make them have great respect and trust in you. It will also give them great confidence in life and a good self-esteem.
It’s not enough to show your kids you love them, you have to also tell them ALL THE TIME. Imagine how your kids would feel and what confidence it would give them to hear, “I love you, you are a great child” every morning when they go to school. The bond and trust that you create with these simple words is priceless, and one day it will count when you tell them, “Don’t go there.” “Your friends are wrong.” “Don’t do that.”
The caring point man in fatherhood
The next thing is care. Show your children that you care for them. You do this by…wait for it…caring. You cannot fake it. You have to talk to your kids, show interest in them, in their friends, in their favorite cartoons, their favorite toys etc.
Complement how they look and what they do, even if it’s not that great, it is great to you as their dad. By these simple acts, that cost nothing you will earn the respect and trust of your kids. If your kids are convinced of your love and care they will come to you for advice and not their friends, they will not hide their mistakes and failures from you.
Lastly, you have to be present in your kids’ lives. Be there with them in every stage of their lives. Take them to school at least once a quarter even if they have transport, have your ‘daddy daughter’ or ‘boys’ traditions to create a bond they will cherish even in their adulthood.
Commit to doing simple activities with your children, like watching your favorite shows, reading poetry, taking Saturday morning walks and such. Be present in his or her interests. Watch TV with them, play TV games with them, play ball with them, do homework with them.
Celebrate your children’s achievements, a simple ice cream as a “well done” from dad to daughter or son, is memorable to children. Don’t let any opportunity go by without celebrating your kids. You don’t have to go to Gold Reef City or Disney World, simply buy popcorn, rent a movie and sit on the couch. If your children can trust you as their point man, they will follow you anywhere. #Pointmanfatherhood