What role (if any) did your father play in your life?

The notion that black fathers are absent in their children's lives is being challenged as more men redefine what fatherhood means in an evolving society.

With 702/Cape Talk's Eusebius McKaiser asked callers to share their stories (good and bad) on whether black fathers are indeed absent or if it's just a myth.

We were brought up in a home where both parents are available and still are. My father is in his mid-70's and he takes care of my kids while I'm at work.

Ruth, caller in Joburg

This is what veteran journalist, Lukhanyo Calata, had to say about his experience of being present as a father to his four-year-old son. His father, Fort Calata, was assassinated when he was the same age his son is right now.

Because my father wasn't there for me in that way, I want to be there for my son as much as I can. I get to live out the things I never got to do with my dad.

Lukhanyo Calata, veteran journalist

Another caller, Thomas, decided to work from home and ensure that his two sons are attended to as his wife leaves early for work.

He highlighted that the notion of absent fathers dates back to entrenched ideas of patriarchal manhood, which often dictates that nurturing should be left to women.

It's part of the evolution of the black man so to speak. We are learning to be more emotionally available.

Thomas, caller in Cape Town

702/Cape Talk digital producer, Omogolo Taunyane, shared how her hostile relationship with her father grew into them being good friends.

All I wanted was an apology from my dad. Divorces are quite traumatic, what happens afterwards often shapes your ideas on relationships... He's my best friend now.

Omogolo, 702 producer

This is what Cape Talk's on-air personality, Koketso Sachane, had to say about fatherhood as a black man.

Listen to the full conversation below:


This article first appeared on 702 : What role (if any) did your father play in your life?


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