Cogito Patris

Random Thoughts for Random People

Part 16 of 31 – Superbowl Pick – Oakland Raiders (bonus brother/children stuff and a word on depression in fathers)

This pick is for my brother.  He is a sports fan…rooting for players more than teams (which is kind of a pet peeve of mine – football is a team sport).  But if he does have to pick a team he picks the Raiders.

You may ask how that could be considering I am a Redskins fan.  Well, it comes from our Father.  I, as a pre-teen and teenager basically liked my father and therefore when it came time to pick a team, I picked the same team he liked…the Redskins.

My father and by brother had a much more confrontational relationship during those formative years.  So when it came time to pick a team my brother picked the team that beat them in the Superbowl that year…the Raiders.

At the time I didn’t understand my brother’s insistance on defying our father at every corner…and I still don’t entirely understand it.  But I now understand that transitioning to an adult is a rocky undertaking and usually involves thumbing your nose at authority.  My brother simply took it farther than necessary.

As a new father myself I am going to have to walk a delicate line.  I want my children to trust me, but at the same time I want them to be capable of standing on their own when the do reach adulthood.  So, I want to avoid not only having the kind of rocky relationship my brother and father had, but I also want to avoid the dependent relationship that I think is primarily responsible for Paris Hilton’s recent legal issues.

Luckily my brother and I have mended fences and have a true friendship now.  I can talk to him about the pitfalls my father encountered with him.  The primary thing my brother sites is my father’s tendency to yell when something went wrong.  This essentially created the confrontational relationship I mentioned above.

Now I have tried to watch myself when it comes to my anger.  But here is where it gets interesting.  It turns out that a lot of men who are suffering from depression exhibit irrational anger.  Apparently it is more “manly” to show anger than sadness.  There is no doubt in my mind that my father suffered from depression for much of his life.  That lesson, more than anything else, was what brought me to the doctor when I realized I was suffering from depression as well.

Gentlemen, I know that there is a social stigma about depression in this country.  Bu it is a real and dangerous disease that has a medical treatment.  You won’t have to see a shrink if you don’t want to.  And most importantly, receiving treatment may save your relationship with your children.  I think that it is manly to get treatment for depression…and those that don’t are the wusses.

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May 9, 2007 - Posted by | Football, Random Thoughts, Sports, SuperBowl, The Kids

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