What’s the Millennial Dad all about?

img_0883Hi, my name’s Phil and I’m the Millennial Dad. I’m married to a lovely lady and we have a daughter who turns 4 in a couple of weeks. I just turned 34 yesterday. I finally began to feel my age when my mum forgot how old I was this week. I don’t usually bother telling people my age any more, but it’s relevant for this blog and I’ll tell you why.

During my first few years of parenthood I’ve noticed little things that I do differently from own my parents in bringing up my daughter.

It’s nothing drastic and we don’t have widely different views of raising a child. It’s just that bringing a child up in the modern world is vastly different to how it was in years gone by.

I’m also part of what sociologists call the millennial generation.

This loosely refers to anyone who was born in the late 1970s/early-mid 1980s and “came of age” around the year 2000, i.e. The millennium. Our generation has been the first to grow up with computers, to embrace new technologies, developments and opportunities. We’re also the first generation to be financially worse off than our predecessors.

Previous generations, such as the baby boomers, who were born in the years just after the Second World War, were some of the most prosperous and benefitted from high investment in services, pensions, free education and home ownership. They had a high standard of living which everyone since has expected to continue to rise. But in 2008 we all experienced a huge financial crash and realised none of it was sustainable. And the millennials were left with shrinking public services, an expensive education if we wanted to go to university, rising living costs and unaffordable housing. Things are pretty tough for this generation.

But it’s not all bad. The millennials are some of the most educated and have access to a wide range of opportunities and resources that simply didn’t exist for previous generations. Think about it. At the touch of a button we can access petabytes of data on everything from cooking to degree courses to instruction manuals. We can communicate quickly and effectively with people all over the world. We can start political movements that rock governments, respond to social injustices in an instant, and we’re experts at making silly cat videos go viral.

We’re also beginning to become parents.

There are ridiculous amounts of information and opinions on parenting on the internet. Maybe I feel more exposed to it as a new parent, but I’ve been overwhelmed by all the things a parent should and shouldn’t do in order to bring up the perfect child. I’ve also noticed there are plenty of guides and blogs for mothers but not as many for fathers.

And so I came up with the concept of the Millennial Dad. I started to write down my thoughts about what it’s like being a dad in the 21st century, and the differences to previous generations of parents. I think there are unique challenges and opportunities to being a dad in today’s world and I wanted to share what I’ve learned and to learn from others.

I’m currently working on a book and in the meantime I’ve started this blog to share my ideas and hopefully gain some input from other dads and mums from around the world. And if it helps me to think about how I can be a better dad to my little girl then all the better!

Let me know what you think and feel free to get in touch at phil@millennialdad.co

See you soon.

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