The joy of fatherhood: Helpful tips for fathers and men who want to become fathers

by Morris Turner

Morris-Turner-speaks-at-Standing-for-Children-rally-in-Santa-Rosa, The joy of fatherhood: Helpful tips for fathers and men who want to become fathers, Culture Currents My motto is “Children don’t raise adults; adults raise children.” Now what does this mean? It means that all children are beautiful angels brought into this world by God and whether we are blood relations or not, it is our responsibility as adults to nurture and encourage every child we possibly can. Remember, there are no bad children, only children in bad circumstances. Let’s see what we as men can do to improve those circumstances.

In this article, I will be sharing some of the things that I did with my children as they were growing up, some things I learned from other fathers, including my own, and some are things I wish I had known that would have made me a better father. Please remember that all the “tips” I offer here are based on my experience and are only suggestions to help men become better fathers. I welcome your feedback, questions and ideas as well.

Tips for the month

  1. Always remember that making a baby makes you a daddy, but raising a child makes you a father.
  2. The most valuable thing you can give a child is your time. When you spend time with a child, you build memories that are never forgotten.
  3. Whether you are with the mother of your child or not, make sure you are in your child’s life every day. At the very least make a phone call to “check in.” We make the time to call everybody else.
  4. Never make a promise you can’t keep. If you say, “We’re going to the park on Saturday,” don’t let anything get in the way. When you break a promise, you break trust. You have to keep 100 promises to make up for one broken one.

Next month’s focus: Fathers, babies and stinky diapers!

Morris Turner is the father of two sons, ages 39 and 35. Over the past 45 years he has worked with children and young people in a variety of settings, including as preschool teacher, career counselor, family mentor and sports coach. He is also an author and recognized researcher in the area of African American settlement in the United States, but his greatest pleasure today is learning to be a good grandpa. He can be reached at or by calling (707) 794-0729.