I have a Twitter troll. Possibly three.
I'll be honest. I hate Twitter. Even though I've had some really wonderful interactions and even won a set of DC Superhero Girl dolls for my daughter because of Twitter, I see it as a place that allows people to say pretty much what they want from a safe distance without any real consequences. Twitter is like a megaphone for the ignorant. And you can't have anything nice around them.
So, back to this troll. Apparently, this man has taken it upon himself to tell folks on Twitter that I am not good father. That is because my daughter has met a handful of prominent female athletes. Apparently this man believes that I "exploit" my daughter so that I can gain access to those female athletes. It's nice that this man has taken it upon himself to police Twitter and reprimand the awful parents out there.
Look, although these are hurtful words, what they are more than anything else are misguided and ignorant. First of all, by definition exploit means to make full use of and derive benefit from (a resource). How exactly am I taking advantage of these situations? I love and adore my wife, who follows me on Twitter. Oh, and my wife and I often coordinate these moments for our daughter. Sometimes, my daughter is actually invited to attend events featuring someone she admires. What this guy doesn't realize is that my wife and I always step out of these moments when they are occurring. I'm certainly not looking to be in a picture or to converse, because it is my daughter's moment. Is there something wrong with my daughter wanting to meet some of her idols? She's 6 after all.
But, you know what? Maybe I do take advantage of these situations. Kelsey Plum told my daughter, "Listen to your parents." Yup, I will fully use that as a resource when my daughter acts up with me or my wife. Skylar Diggins-Smith told my daughter to keep working on her game. Yup, I refer to that any time my daughter questions a basketball drill or isn't willing to end with a made shot. Sugar Rodgers says to not let anyone tell you to give up on your dream. Yup, we've added that to our daily affirmations. But, do I get anything out of meeting the people my daughter idolizes? Only my daughter's joy and appreciation. And gratitude that the folks my daughter respects are polite and generous.
For anyone to so quickly and so carelessly evaluate my parenting without knowing anything about me is just disgusting. They don't know about the hundreds and hundreds of diaper changes. The pep talks. Serving as a class parent in pre-school. The trips to the library. The endless laundry. Listening to Kidz Bop over and over and over again. Shopping for clothes.The daily affirmations on the way to school. Attending outdoor soccer practices and games during the worst part of allergy season. The endless birthday parties. The morning snuggles. Listening to my daughter cough as a baby. The trip in an ambulance to the emergency room when my daughter was struggling with her breathing. The happiness I have seeing her do the mundane. The endless vomiting when she has a stomach bug. The time when I accidentally poked a hole in my hand preparing a meal for my daughter, wrapped my hand up to stop the bleeding, waited until my wife got home from work, and calmly went to urgent care.
Oh no, Mr. Twitter troll, you and your boys have me all figured out. I'm only posing as a great dad. I only had a child to use said child to virtually meet female athletes. I spend much more time doing that then actually caring for my daughter. There's no way that I am planting seeds of confidence and helping her retain words of wisdom from her role models that might help her accomplish her dream of becoming a professional basketball player. Yes, I am just as pathetic as you think. You know what? I'm absolutely certain that my daughter, my wife, and my mother would agree.
Nah. Never. No way.
Maybe you should realize that not every man thinks with something other than his brain. Maybe realize assumptions are not the way to go. Maybe realize that helping my daughter meet some of her idols and powerful role models inspires her in an amazingly beautiful way. I'll make you this deal. You can have Twitter. It's all yours. Don't need it. I'll take my daughter and everything good and bad that comes with being her parent. And I won't take any of your "advice". How's that sound?