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The Evolution of a Single Dad: Balancing Sacrifice, Support, and Self-Discovery

Fatherhood is a deeply personal and transformative journey that challenges individuals in unexpected ways. In the podcast episode of Dads with Daughters, guest Rob Rohde shares his profound experiences as a single father to five daughters, shedding light on the complexities and rewards of parenting. Through his candid reflections and discussions with Dr. Christopher Lewis, Rob’s story unveils the evolution of his role as a father, from initial fears and struggles to moments of growth and resilience.

Embracing Vulnerability:

Rob Rohde’s admission of neglecting self-care early on as a single father resonates with many parents who prioritize their children’s well-being above their own. By falling into the trap of self-sacrifice, Rob recognized the detrimental impact it had on his mental and emotional health. Through support from his family and other men, Rob acknowledged the importance of self-care and the necessity of addressing his own needs while being a pillar of strength for his daughters.

Facing Challenges and Self-Reflection:

The journey of fatherhood is not without its challenges, as Rob Rohde discovered through personal struggles and moments of feeling lost. His realization of the fractured relationships with his older daughters prompted introspection and personal growth. By asking himself tough questions about his parenting and taking responsibility for his role in the family dynamics, Rob embarked on a path of self-discovery and improvement.

Supporting Through Loss and Trauma:

The loss of the girls’ mother posed a significant emotional hurdle for Rob and his daughters, highlighting the importance of navigating grief and supporting each child’s unique needs. Rob’s account of being asked to identify his late wife’s body by the sheriff’s department illuminates the profound depth of his challenges. Despite the traumatic event, Rob’s unwavering dedication to his daughters’ well-being and his commitment to open communication and support illustrate the resilience of the human spirit in times of adversity.

Lessons in Connection and Bonding:

Rob Rohde’s emphasis on understanding nonverbal cues and fostering meaningful connections with his daughters underscores the power of effective communication and emotional intelligence in parenting. By prioritizing quality time and creating a safe environment for his children, Rob cultivates strong bonds built on trust and understanding.

Empowering Other Fathers:

Rob’s journey as a single father inspired him to become a coach for other dads facing similar struggles, providing personalized support and guidance. By acknowledging the common challenges and complexities of single fatherhood, Rob aims to customize his coaching approach to address individual needs and empower men on their parenting journey.

In the realm of fatherhood, each experience is a unique tapestry of growth, challenges, and triumphs. Rob Rohde’s narrative exemplifies the transformative power of self-reflection, vulnerability, and unwavering support in navigating the complexities of parenting. As fathers embrace their roles with openness and authenticity, they pave the way for meaningful connections and enduring bonds with their children.

By sharing his story and insights, Rob Rohde inspires a community of fathers to embrace their journey with grace, resilience, and an unwavering commitment to supporting their daughters through every twist and turn of life’s tapestry. Through vulnerability and self-discovery, fathers can truly become the anchors of love and support that their children need to thrive and blossom.

TRANSCRIPT

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:00:05]:
Welcome to dads with daughters. In this show, we spotlight dads, resources, and more to help you be the best dad you can be.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:00:16]:
Welcome back to the dads with daughters podcast where we bring you guests to be active participants in your daughter’s lives, raising them to be strong independent women. Really excited to have you back again this week and every week I love it. I’m being able to just be here to be part of this journey that you’re on. And you’re a part of my journey too. I have to tell you about my kids, and I love hearing about the journeys that you’re on as well. And I appreciate so much that you come back every week and are able to learn and grow with all of the dads and all of the people that we have on the show. It has been an amazing ride over these last few years as we have had so many amazing guests that have shared their own journey, shared resources and more to help you be that dad that you wanna be for your daughters. And that’s important because none of us have all the answers.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:01:07]:
None of us have to do this alone. And it’s important to be able to reach out to learn to be able to be a little vulnerable. Yes. I said that word vulnerability. Yes. Being a little vulnerable and knowing that you don’t have to do this alone and that you can reach out. You can learn about other ways of doing things and incorporate things into your own parenting journey that makes sense. Not everything you’re gonna hear on every show is gonna make sense for you.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:01:37]:
I get that. And what’s most important is that you’re here, you come back, you listen every week, and you’re willing to learn. This week, we’ve got another great guest with us today. Rob Rode is with us. And Rob is a single dad of 5 daughters. Yes, I said 5 daughters. And and I said single dad. So we’re gonna be talking about that as well and the journey that he has been on with his own daughters. I’m really excited to have him on and to have him share some of the journey that he’s had. Rob, thanks so much for being here today.

Rob Rohde [00:02:10]:
Hi, Chris. I am happy to be here. Thank you for having me.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:02:13]:
It is my pleasure having you here today. Love being able to talk to you about this journey that you’re on. And I wanna turn the clock back in time. I know you’ve got 5 daughters and your oldest daughters are in their twenties. So adults now, but I wanna go all the way back because I know your oldest are twins.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:02:28]:
Let’s go all the way back to that first moment. That first moment when you found out that you’re going to be a dad to a daughter, what was going through your head?

Rob Rohde [00:02:35]:
Wow. Well, my story is actually a little bit different in that my oldest daughters were already born when I met them. So I started dating their mom when they were about 2 years old. And so I, you know, I knew at the time that I started seeing their mom that she had daughters and she had twin daughters. And so if I was gonna make a decision to continue in that relationship and to, go down that path, I I knew that being a father was part of it. And so there wasn’t this single moment in time where I realized, oh, you’re gonna be a dad to daughters. It was more of a kind of a a slow journey. But I will say this, one of the more kind of unique and exciting things that I get to tell my oldest 2 daughters is that I got to choose to be their dad.

Rob Rohde [00:03:22]:
I got to choose them specifically. And that’s something that’s kind of unique and kind of exciting. And so the story is, is that after their mom and I got married, their father, biological father, was never in the picture. And so I wanted to start the process of trying to adopt them. And so after several years of going down that road, I did adopt them. And so, now they are not just mine in spirit, they are fully mine and will always be.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:03:50]:
I love that story and the journey that you’re on. And and so one I guess one other question is that so you had a few years with just those 2, and then you ended up having your next daughters. And at that point, that had to have been a little bit more of a surprise because of the fact that that you didn’t come into the relationship where those daughters were there. So talk to me about that reaction that you had when those next daughters came into your life.

Rob Rohde [00:04:17]:
It was definitely different, but I I have to tell you, I I was so excited. We did not with my 3rd daughter now, so the one the first one that you’re talking about, we did not know whether or not she was going to be a girl or a boy. So that moment came in the delivery room when she was actually born. And so, you know, when I always wanted to have a large family, and I was excited about that. And I was excited for to already have the 2 older girls and now to be kind of starting a expanding that family further. And so the moment that I saw her, it was amazing. I mean, I think the thing that a lot of a lot of people don’t tell you is just they talk about the fear, and they talk about the all the worries, and they talk about the stress. But they don’t talk really about how you literally fall in love with this little child in a different way, but a similar way to how you you fall in love with a spouse. And that it but it happens so quickly for some of us. And in this situation, it happened almost right away from the moment I saw her.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:05:23]:
Now you just mentioned fear in a lot of dads that I talked to talk about that with having daughters, that there is some fear that went along with that. For you having 5 daughters. What’s been your biggest fear in raising your daughters?

Rob Rohde [00:05:37]:
You know, initially, my biggest fear was just simply fear that I was going to screw them up. You know, I mean, that sounds so simple and so basic, but it was just fear that maybe I wasn’t equipped to connect with them in the way that they needed or to or I wasn’t patient enough or, you know, I didn’t really have all the tools that I needed in order to to really take care of daughters and to to be that type of dad that they needed from me. But I will say that that fear changed significantly as they started to get older. And once I became a single father, that anxiety turned into just into a complete lack of knowing whether or not I had the ability to take care of them on my own, and a feeling of overwhelm and everything that goes along with that. But now that the kids are a little bit older, the anxiety that I face or the fear that I face is more around whether or not I did the work and did the things that I needed to do when they were younger to really build that foundation for them. And whether or not they you know, every dad is going to fear for the safety of their kids, and in particular, their daughters. I think that that’s just always there. And there’s only so much you can do to protect them as they grow and as they become older.

Rob Rohde [00:06:57]:
And, you know, your hope is that you have done the work early on so that now that they are in this stage of their life, that they have the tools that they need, they have that sense of self worth and security. They have the love for themselves and the the knowledge that they have value to offer the world. And, you know, you we really just want to raise daughters who are confident, secure, love themselves, and treat others well. And the fear is whether or not we’ve done our work early on in order to set them up to be successful.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:07:28]:
Now one of the things that you just talked about was that anxiety that you felt, especially as became a single father and the questioning of your own abilities to be able to manage things to to deal with things. I’m sure that during that process, you had to do some things for yourself to be able to manage that anxiety, to get past that anxiety, to be able to then be there for your daughters. Talk to me about that journey for yourself and what you had to do to get yourself in a place where you were able to get to that point of, I’m gonna say acceptance in some ways, but but how it’s in getting to that point where you were okay with where you were, but then at the same time, where you were okay with where your daughters were and able to support them for what they needed?

Rob Rohde [00:08:15]:
Well, so if I’m being fully honest, I did not do a good job of taking care of myself early on. I fell into the trap that so many of us dads fall into, which is trying to be that rock of stability and trying to make sure that we’re that pillar for our children. And we put all of our energy and all of our resources into making sure that they have what they need. And we almost do it, or I almost did it, almost like a badge of honor. Like, I’m gonna put my needs to the side and make sure that they have everything they need. I’m gonna always put them first. And I did that to my detriment. And I it took me time to realize that that was not helpful for them, and they were not getting the best version of me when I was trying to go that direction.

Rob Rohde [00:08:59]:
So the help that I did have, though, from the beginning is I did have a strong support group within my family. I had a group of of relatives, uncles, cousins, my father, other men who were in my corner and who kept me grounded and helped provide me with the confidence that I needed and kept me kind of going in that positive direction.

Rob Rohde [00:09:19]:
But there was also this period of time where I felt lost, and I felt like I was not doing what to do, and I was not taking care of myself. And when I first became a single father, I went into this trap of I was drinking single father, I went into this trap of, I was drinking too much, I wasn’t sleeping well, I was not exercising, not eating healthy. I wasn’t doing any of the things that I needed to do to take care of myself. And it really took those men that I, that I spoke about earlier kind of stepping into my life and saying, hey, Rob, you need to make a change, and you need to really take a look at the example you’re setting for your daughters and kind of get out of this funk that you’re in. And I will say that I did seek out help after that, and I I sought out help in the form of of counselors and mentors and other men, And I just leaned on people and started doing my own work. And I went through this period early on where I was just blaming everybody for everything. And I was blaming my ex wife for maybe saying derogatory things about me, and I was blaming my job for forcing me to work so much. And I was blaming my older daughters because I not appreciating everything I did because my relationship with them was fractured.

Rob Rohde [00:10:30]:
And we really had a a challenge early on. And so it took me a while to get out of that place of blame and start working on myself as opposed to just pointing the finger outward and pointing the finger at others. And to me, what was this turning point for me is I was listening to the words of a host on a leadership podcast who was talking about a situation where him as a leader fell short on his goals. And he had to report up to his boss, and his boss asked him this question. He asked him, how has your leadership contributed to this result? And I heard those words, and I immediately went to my older daughters. And I turned that back at me and asked myself, how has your parenting contributed to this result? How has your parenting led to these fractured relationships that you’re currently in with your older daughters? And that was a moment that really just sunk in. Those were words that just sunk in and really entered into my mind. And I remember sitting alone when I heard this, when I was listening to this.

Rob Rohde [00:11:35]:
My kids were at their mom’s house. I was alone in the house, up in my room, and I remember turning to the mirror and looking at myself and just being disgusted with the person that I had become, disgusted with this person who was blaming everybody else for everything and who was not taking responsibility for my own actions. And I knew I needed to make a change. And so I did. I told myself that I need to be doing things better moving forward. My daughters need a better version of me moving forward. And so to to answer your question, at that point, I became completely engrossed in learning everything I could possibly learn about leadership, parenting, raising daughters, raising sons, which I didn’t even have. But just anything I could come up with that would help me be a better parent, a better leader for my family, and really kind of diving back into my own personal growth.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:12:29]:
I appreciate you sharing that because I think that many dads can fall into that trap and fall into that situation where you, as you said, you blame yourself and you start spiraling down that and not every person is gonna be willing to admit that and to deal with it the way that you have. So I appreciate you sharing that and being willing to share that with everyone today. Now, as you were going through that, and going through your own process of being able to get to a better place to be able to then be there for your own daughters. As you go through that yourself, as you’re raising your daughters, it’s not always easy. There are definite hard points. What would you say has been the hardest part of being a father to a daughter?

Rob Rohde [00:13:11]:
I would say the hardest part is really recognizing the uniqueness in each individual. And that was especially hard for me starting off with twins who were already 2 years old when I met them, 4 years old when we got married, and 7 when the adoption finally went final. And I kind of had it in my head that, okay, I know how I wanna be a parent. And if I do things a certain way, then it’s going to be effective. If I do it from a place of love, then I do it from a place of caring, then it’ll be effective. But it really wasn’t. The things that I was trying were not working. And you know, there’s this uniqueness when you’re raising twins, in that the primary person that they turn to for recognition, for support, and for a the person that they wanna please more than anyone else in the world is not their parents.

Rob Rohde [00:14:07]:
It’s each other. And that’s a unique dynamic that I didn’t appreciate. And even as twins, they’re quite different. And so, I will say the hardest thing for me was the recognizing that I needed to be a different parent to each of my children. Same level of accountability and the same level of responsibility for them, but a different person. The way that I connected with them had to be different. The way that I related with them had to be different. And the way that I showed them that I love them and I cared for them had to be different.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:14:41]:
Now you and I have had a conversation at the beginning of our talk today before we went live. And one of the things you shared with me was also a really hard story and something that you had to really work with your daughters on. And that was the loss of their mother or their for your daughters. Talk to me about that and what you had to do as a father to be able to support your daughters through that loss and help them to be resilient through that period. Because at that point, they would have been in their early twenties all the way down to 8. And as you said, you need to understand how you need what the needs are for each child. But the needs of that vast age range is gonna be very different in the loss of a parent.

Rob Rohde [00:15:28]:
Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, that was a difficult it’s an understatement to say that that was a difficult time. I was working in healthcare at the time, and I was at work in the middle of the night. And the way that all this happened after there’s a series of events that happened that led up to this, without going into all of those details, I received a phone call in the middle of the night on my shift at the hospital I was working at, and it was the sheriff’s department, and they were asking me to help identify the body of the girl’s mom. And even though there were a lot of challenges during that time, I was not expecting this. It was a huge shock. And in that moment, after I processed my own feelings, the quick version of processing my own feelings, I was sitting in this place where I felt like I am completely ill equipped to give my daughters what they need from me in this situation. And that was the worst day of my life really up to that point.

Rob Rohde [00:16:24]:
And as bad as it was for me, I knew that it was 10 times more difficult for my daughters. And that following morning, when I had to have that conversation with them and let them know what had happened, I mean, it was horrible. It was awful. And, you know, I did not know what they needed. I did not know how to support them. All I knew how to do was to share the information with them in a sensitive way and to hold them and be there for them and to let them try to process their feelings in that moment. And over time, we used all the resources that were available to us. And there were resources that the court helped provide us with, victim’s advocate resources and counselors and things along those lines.

Rob Rohde [00:17:08]:
But as you said, each one of the children is different. And so I it’s impossible for me to talk about this story and talk about this situation as if it’s in past in the past because we are still dealing with this right now today. And I suspect that the girls in particular will be dealing with this for the rest their lives, at least on a certain level. For instance, my one of my daughters who is now 21 has spent years in counseling and has gone through a lot of work and done a lot of processing and really is in a really good place. But now that she’s in a serious dating relationship, there are some aspects of this that are coming back up, and it’s affecting her in ways that she didn’t know, she didn’t know enough to work through those feelings until they actually, till she was actually in this situation. And so it’s an evolving process. And so the best thing that I felt that I was able to do is to just give the girls a space where they felt comfortable and safe sharing the feelings that they were having with me, and then listening to the emotions, listening to the words that they were saying, and providing them with the support out beyond myself when I was not able to give them everything they needed. I firmly believe that one of the best things that we can do as parents, one of the most effective things we can do as parents to truly connect and bond and have life changing meaningful relationships with our kids is to take the time to study them, to legitimately, thoroughly study them, to be able to learn their nonverbal cues, to be able to learn their body language, to be able to see the expressions and know when they’re feeling anxiety, to know when they’re feeling a sense of of fear or despair or any emotion.

Rob Rohde [00:18:58]:
And I think that we don’t spend enough time doing that as parents. And the fact that I had a little bit of a foundation doing that, I think helped me in that situation, but I had doubled down on that and really tried to understand their nonverbal cues and to really get to to understand their feelings and where they were at.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:19:17]:
I really appreciate you sharing all of that. And I can only imagine that it is ongoing and it will continue to be ongoing. And just being there, like you said, is so important to be able to help your daughters to process and work through this to be able to help them in so many ways. Now, all of these things, all these things that you’ve been talking about, the journey that you’ve been on as a single dad to be able to be the father that you wanna be for your girls has led you to becoming a coach, a coach for single fathers. And I guess I’d love to hear a little bit of that origin story and what led you down this path of wanting to coach other single fathers in the journey that they’re on?

Rob Rohde [00:20:00]:
Yeah, thank you for asking. I’m gonna tell a little story that kind of leads into this. And I’m kind of telling this in reverse order because I kind of told a portion of it a few minutes ago. But, you know, there was a moment shortly after the girl’s mom and I separated when I was in the car driving over to pick up my daughters for their parenting time with me. And I remember as I was driving over, thoughts were racing through my head because I was struggling a little bit in my relationship with my older girls. I was working a ton. I was I would lose my patience at times. They blamed me for the divorce.

Rob Rohde [00:20:35]:
They were upset at me, and the truth is they had a right to be. But I was really genuinely trying. And I remember as I pull into the driveway thinking, this time is going to be different. This time I’m going to be more patient. This time, I’m gonna put their needs before mine. This time, I’m gonna put away all my distractions and give them my undivided attention. And as these thoughts were racing through my head, I froze as my, as the girl’s mom walked out to the car alone and told me that the girls, my oldest girls, were not coming over to see me. That they didn’t want to spend time with me.

Rob Rohde [00:21:13]:
They were upset with me. And I felt like a complete failure. My own daughters did did not wanna spend time with me. And that’s when I kind of went through this place of really feeling all of this blame, putting all this blame on everyone else. And until I until over time, I realized that a very, very simple truth, which is that I can only control my reaction to situations. I cannot control other people. And I know how basic that is. I know how simple that is.

Rob Rohde [00:21:41]:
But sometimes the most simple truths make the biggest differences in our lives. And that was when I really started just educating myself and learning everything I I could learn and really trying to put myself in that place. But I had these feelings of exhaustion and fear and anxiety and inadequacy, and feeling like a failure, and feeling like there was a lack of resources to support me when I was in that place in my journey. And I’m telling this because that, along with all of my experiences that I’ve had, have led me to this place where I decided that I really wanted to provide the support and guidance to other men who are in the situation that I was in, but really the support and guidance that I didn’t have, that I wish that I had had because it would have changed my journey, and it would have sped up my recovery with my daughters, and it would have sped up my growth, and it would have just made all the difference in the world. I didn’t have that. I think that there is a lack of resources out there for single fathers in particular, and I wanted to step into that place based on my experience and my knowledge. And so I went and I got my degree, and I I got my master’s degree in leadership, and I’ve taken coaching courses, and I’ve done everything I could to prepare myself. But I also have this breadth of experience that is unique, that not a lot of people have.

Rob Rohde [00:23:07]:
And so that is what went on inside my heart that led me to this place. And then what went on inside my mind and with my actions is is really that play wanting to step into that gap that existed so that I could help support other men. I mean, you’ve talked about this often on your podcast, which is that we do better when we link arms with other men. We are not meant to do this alone. We need accountability. We need mentorship. We need partnerships. And, you know, I could not agree with you more.

Rob Rohde [00:23:38]:
And that is a big piece of what I what I’m trying to provide.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:23:42]:
So you’ve opened yourself up to being that coach, that person that helped to other dads, as you’ve been going through that or yourself as you’ve been working with different dads, what are you learning? Oh, wow. I

Rob Rohde [00:24:00]:
Oh, wow. I am learning so very much with every conversation I have. I, some of the things that I have learned is how common some of these struggles are. And also, the similarities that exist regardless of age, regardless of age of the children, regardless of socioeconomic background, we all have a lot of the same fears and we all have a lot of the same desires. I think that my goal is to really meet people where they are at on their journey. I do have a step by step process that I take Minh through, but it is 100% customizable. And so the process is about the steps that we will take, but the ability for it to be customized is starting out by really understanding what it is that that individual man father wants out of this journey. What is his end goal? What is his desire? And really starting out with just trying to help that individual figure out what it is they want, and then we can customize that process to get there.

Rob Rohde [00:25:10]:
And some of the, you know, one of the first things that I do is we just walk through and see what is going on in their life that needs to be addressed right away. You know, we all have when we are in the middle of a chaotic situation, when there are fires going on in all aspects of our life, we’re not in a position to really move forward and grow and learn. We need to set up some boundaries and set up our life so that we can optimize our ability to learn. And so we start by just identifying what is a single biggest issue that is holding you back right now and what are the steps we can take to address that issue. And that’s the starting point. And then we go all the way through the process of talking about goals and vision and values and balance. But also, we don’t lose sight of the fact that all men, in my opinion, have three things that they need in order to feel happy and successful. And those three things are deep meaningful connections, the pursuit of meaningful things, so meaningful pursuits or endeavors, and then they all need to feel alive.

Rob Rohde [00:26:23]:
They need something that allows them to feel, to get excited in the morning when they wake up. And so we always, everything that we do, we keep that in mind. What are you doing to feel alive? How are your relationships? How are your connections right now with your kids or your family or whatever is important to you? And what are you pursuing that is truly meaningful, that you’re proud of? And so that’s kind of the underlying theme that oversees everything that we do.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:26:51]:
So you’ve developed this core framework, you’re working with dads, you’re helping to walk these dads through this journey. What’s next for you in this progression of the work that you’re doing?

Rob Rohde [00:27:04]:
You know, the next piece that I really want to step into is the community piece. And so, I really wanna move beyond the 1 on 1 coaching and move towards more of setting up the community. And so there are 2 ways that I am looking at doing that. And one of them is through group coaching with a, potentially with a digital course as a piece of that that goes along with that. But I really want to move into the community space because I feel like that is what we need as men more than anything. That is where we will see like exponential growth and the sustainability of the changes that are made is when we have a community that is joining us in the journey.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:27:51]:
Now, I always like to finish our interviews with what I like to call our fatherhood 5, where I ask you 5 more questions to delve deeper into you as a dad. Are you ready?

Rob Rohde [00:27:58]:
I am. Let’s do it.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:27:59]:
In one word, what is fatherhood?

Rob Rohde [00:28:02]:
Responsibility.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:28:03]:
Now, when was the time that you finally felt like you succeeded at being a father to a daughter?

Rob Rohde [00:28:07]:
So I believe strongly in family culture and I believe strongly in establishing an environment where your values and meaning is all kind of comes together and into your culture as a family. And so one moment for me was shortly after, really not that long ago, a few months ago, I was leaving my 9 to 5 job and moving into this space full time. And after I came home, after my last day of work, I came home and there was basically, like, surprise celebration for me by my kids. And, you know, along with comments such as, dad, what can we do to kinda help you out so that you can have more time to be focusing on this, so that you can have more time for your clients, so you can have more time to do this. And the reason why that was a moment of success for me as a father, my kids were teaching me a lesson. My kids were showing me what it means to have a family culture of support and unconditional love and being there for each other and prioritizing family. And especially at the age that my kids are, for them to take the time to do that meant a lot.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:29:16]:
Now, if I was to talk to your daughters, how would they describe you as a dad?

Rob Rohde [00:29:22]:
Well, I mean, if you got them in a good moment versus in a tough moment, I think that they would describe me across the board as as being loving and being supportive, but also having high expectations and standards, especially in terms of how we treat other people and the values we possess and pursuing meaningful things in our life.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:29:48]:
And who inspires you to be a better dad?

Rob Rohde [00:29:50]:
The man in the mirror, to be honest with you. When I look at myself in the mirror and I I ask myself at one point, what kind of man do you wanna be? What kind of father do you wanna be? I wanna be able to look back. My goal is to be able to look back at that man each day and be proud of that person that I am, be proud of that father.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:30:11]:
You’ve given a lot of piece of advice, a lot of pieces of your own story that can help other dads to define a bit more of their own story. As we finish up today, what’s one piece of advice you’d want to give to every dad?

Rob Rohde [00:30:23]:
So one piece of advice I’d like to give. Most people are going to tell you that the most important thing is to spend quality time with your kids. And I’m here to say that the most important thing we can do as fathers is to set aside a large quantity of time for our kids. That is what our kids need from us. Our kids need us to be present. It’s in those moments when we are present and our kids feel safe and secure that quality moments happen. It’s in those moments when we’re just there, sitting there reading a book, but we are simply present, that they are comfortable coming to us and sharing with us the important things going on in their lives, their relationship issues that they’re having, their friendships, their hopes, their dreams, their desires. We can’t create a quality moment, but we can create a safe environment and be present as often as possible so that those quality moments can happen naturally.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:31:26]:
Well, Rob, I just wanna say thank you. Thank you for sharing your journey today. If people wanna find out more about you, where should they go?

Rob Rohde [00:31:34]:
Yeah. The probably the best place to find out more about me is to check out my podcast, which is called The Business of Being Dad. And I release a new episode every Tuesday. You can find it on all the streaming platforms. And within the show description, there are links to my website, to my email, and also to a free resource called Thrive as a Single Dad that I would love to share with anyone who is interested.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:32:02]:
Well, Rob, I just wanna say thank you. Thank you for being here today, for sharing your journey and your continuing journey with your 5 daughters. And I truly wish you all the best.

Rob Rohde [00:32:12]:
Thank you so much. It’s been an honor.

Dr. Christopher Lewis [00:32:13]:
If you’ve enjoyed today’s episode of the dads with daughters podcast, we invite you to check out the fatherhood insider. The fatherhood insider is the essential resource for any dad that wants to be the best dad that he can be. We know that no child comes with an instruction manual and most dads are figuring it out as they go along, and the fatherhood insider is full of resources and information that will up your game on fatherhood. Through our extensive course library, interactive forum, step by step road maps and more, you will engage and learn with experts, but more importantly, dads like you. So check it out at fathering together dot org. If you are a father of a daughter and have not yet joined the dads with daughters Facebook community, there’s a link in the notes today. Dads with daughters is a program of fathering together. We look forward to having you back for another great guest next week, all geared to helping you raise strong and powered daughters and be the best dad that you can be.

We’re all in the same boat And it’s full of tiny screaming passengers. We spend the time. We give the lessons. We make the meals. We buy them presents and bring your a game. Because those kids are growing fast. The time goes by just like a dynamite blast. Calling astronauts and firemen, carpenters, and musclemen Get out and be the world to them.

Be the best dad you can be. You’re the best dad you can be.

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Christopher Lewis


Christopher is the co-founder of Fathering Together and the Chief Information Officer. He is the father of 2 daughters that are now in their tweens and teens. He started Dad of Divas, a blog to share his own personal experiences in being a father in 2007 and in 2018 started the Dads With Daughters Facebook Group to allow dads to connect, learn and grow together. He works in Digital Media on a daily basis, but also has over 20 years of experience in higher education administration.

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