Regular readers of Diary of the Dad may remember that I was lucky enough to win one of the categories at the MAD Blog Awards last year. I remain delighted and stunned in equal measure that people not only read my bewildered musings about parenthood but also that they were kind enough to vote for me.
Winning the Best Baby Blog category has opened up all kinds of wonderful opportunities for me and, as a member of the minority gender in the fantastic and friendly entity that is the parent blogging community, it was a massive boost to my confidence and, I’m sure, to that of other dad bloggers out there.
Which is why I was so disappointed to learn this morning that there isn’t as much as one dad in this year’s final.
This isn’t a ‘woe is me, it should have been me’ post. I’ve had my moment of glory and genuinely didn’t expect to get anywhere near the final this time. I did expect there to be a few blokes in it, however. There are some absolutely brilliant blogs written by dads which I was fully expecting to see taking their deserved places at the awards ceremony but, sadly, this is not the case.
I can also say, hand on heart, that there are a great many of them that are better than this one and I will remain eternally envious of their wit, honesty and turn of phrase. By that logic, if I won one, then these chaps are more than deserving of an award too.
This isn’t an anti-mums post either. I’m absolutely delighted for everyone who has made it to the final. Attending the awards ceremony alone makes you feel a part of something special and every last one of them deserves to be there. It’s just that I don’t feel that the community is being represented as well as it could be.
So I guess the point I am coming to is that, despite being made welcome in the parent blogging community and beyond, dads still seem to be overlooked. The ‘D’ in MAD stands for ‘Dads’ and I know that the organisers – who, by the way, do an amazing job and deserve nothing other than praise – have been reluctant to have a dads-only category.
I wholeheartedly agree with them. If it existed then people wouldn’t vote for those of a male persuasion in the others. I’m not pointing the finger at anyone; the awards are well structured and people vote for the blogs they enjoy and you can’t argue with that. I’m just asking people to just consider voting for dads next time.
Society often relegates fathers to second-class parents status and this is something that continues to annoy me. In most families, there is a caring, loving, hands-on dad. Those of us who write about our pride at being parents are in a prime position to fly the flag for other parents who happen to have a Y chromosome.
So being overlooked by voters in something that is designed to celebrate the spirit of family-minded people is a kick in the teeth.
At last year’s ceremony, there was a board with a picture of each finalist on it. People could write and attach notes to one another on it. There was one note stuck to my picture; it simply said: “More dads next year please.” How sad that this won’t be the case…