And we're pretty good at it, and we enjoy it. Is that so surprising? A conversation among three involved fathers.
Several times a day, after my infant daughter, Sammy, finishes breastfeeding, my wife, Jean, will hand her over to me and say, "Can you burp her?" And I will duly pick Sammy up, put her over my shoulder, and lightly pound her back until she emits a belch. Done!
Now, Jean is not asking me to do the burping because she's exhausted (although she is). No, she's asking because, frankly, I'm better at coaxing bubbles from the baby's belly, just as I'm better at certain of the other household tasks I've gravitated toward ever since our first daughter, Sasha, was born almost four years ago: planning and preparing our meals, getting Sasha up and dressed in the morning, arranging playdates, putting the kids to bed—all duties that, until not too long ago, were considered a mother's natural province.
MORE ON WOMEN & MEN
Today, of course, the End of Men has arrived, and we're hip-deep in the swamp of the stay-at-home-dad trend. From enlightened-liberal metropolises to small-town U.S.A., fathers are voluntarily taking on the challenge of parenthood in ways that previous generations never could have imagined, and decrying media images of men as incompetent, bumbling, or, worse, absent from active parenting entirely. We exist! they seem to cry en masse. And more and more, that cry is being heard.