n Five Ways to Celebrate [Responsible] Father’s Day | Having Kids

Not all fathers should be celebrated on Father’s Day, from the many fathers that kill their own children, to “TV Personalities” like Josh Duggar who’s life and poor family planning is eerily reminiscent of characters from the movie Idiocracy.

But there are ways to celebrate, and help make Father’s Day mean more than just another excuse to buy something. We can make it mean a better world, and not just more people.

1) Make a donation in the name of male contraception. The Male Contraception Initiative is a non-profit that is pushing for the development of male contraception through education, advocacy and funding research. A modeling study indicated that even if only 10% of interested men took up a male contraceptive pill, there would be a 5% decrease in unintended pregnancies in the United States. Want better fathers? Encourage better family planning, and ask the environmental organizations you belong to to do the same.

2) Know someone who has a boatload of kids, or wouldn’t be a good father? Start planning your very own “Vasectomy Party” and invite those special guests. Could Josh Duggar be on your list?

3) Talk to your kids about the importance of family planning.  In 2011, 45% of all pregnancies – or 2.8 million pregnancies – in the United States were unplanned. Though this figure represents an all-time low in unplanned pregnancies, there is still a lot of work to be done. There are loads of resources available about how to have these conversations with kids of all ages.

4) Ask for family planning help if you need it  Responsible parents make sure they care for their child’s physical, emotional and educational needs. They put the needs of their child before their own feelings of pride and shame and ask for help to ensure their child is cared for. There are resources in every state to help families with financial or logistical needs.

5) Offer help if you can give it. The best parents are those that teach their own children compassion for others and that everyone deserves a fair start in life.  If you are fortunate enough to have the resources, give to one of the many organizations that support low-income families with basic needs, kids in foster care, and equal educational opportunities for all kids. Mentor kids in need. And encourage the United Nations to take family planning seriously, and change from its outdated parent-focused modeling to the forward-looking and child-first Fair Start model.

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