Challenges faced by Black fathers in America today

Frederick Goodall, Blogger of "Mocha Dad", explains what the challenges faced by Black fathers are today and shares advice on how to overcome them
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Challenges faced by Black fathers in America today

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Being a black father in America today has its own set of challenges. Obviously I have to teach my children about racism and how to deal with that. And as so many people like to say, "racism doesn't exist." But we know that's not true. Even if they never experience the overt racism that many people have experienced, it's up to me to tell them that this may happen in your life. And if it happens, here's how you deal with it. I want them to be prepared to understand that the world's not a perfect place, and that as African-Americans, people may not like them because of who they are. And I have to give them the tools to cope with that. Here's how you handle it, move on. Don't dwell on it. I also get concerned about my boys. Being African-American boys in society, people often have low expectations of them. So I really struggle, and I really emphasize the importance of being excellent in everything they do. I always tell them, "what I want is for you to be your best. Go and do the best you can. Go and do the best you can do in every single thing that you can do. So there's no excuse for anyone to have a low expectation of you because they know that you give your all every single time, and this is my expectation of you regardless of anybody else's expectation." And that's how I want them to show themselves in society, to show that young black boys are strong or smart or well-behaved. "And that's how I want you to present yourselves, so if someone else has another impression, that's on them. But I know you've done all you can to present yourself in the right way."

Frederick Goodall, Blogger of "Mocha Dad", explains what the challenges faced by Black fathers are today and shares advice on how to overcome them

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Frederick J. Goodall

Blogger, "Mocha Dad"

Frederick J. Goodall is a writer, a speaker, and a father. In 2008, he started the popular fatherhood blog, "Mocha Dad" to chronicle his life as a dad and to counter the negative stereotypes regarding black fatherhood. He wanted to give readers a first-hand account of a black father who is intimately involved in his children’s lives. Now he uses the blog to not only capture his experiences, but also to help motivate other men to be more actively engaged and involved with their children, families, and communities.

Through his writing, Goodall attempts to address serious cultural and social issues. His articles and essays have been published in numerous magazines, newspapers, and journals such as The Houston Chronicle, Essence, and Folio Weekly. His work has also appeared in the anthologies: Paper Thin/Soul Deep and The African-American Book of Values. In addition, Goodall is a regular contributor to the websites Mamiverse, Goldfishsmiles, Your Teen Mag, and Together Counts. Goodall also travels the country speaking on the topics of fatherhood, men’s issues, social media, and blogging.

Goodall was born in Houston, Texas and graduated from Howard University in Washington, D.C. He currently lives in Houston with his wife and three kids.

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