All parents undergo a big change when their kids are born. We hold them in our arms for the first time and our brains realign. We stop caring about what we want, (and even who we are) and focus solely on the tiny, messy, squealing person in our hands. It’s perfectly normal, even the most fashion conscious young man to pay less attention to their look when they become a Dad. After all, how good can you look after an average 2 hours sleep a night because you’ve been getting up for feeds, anyway? What’s not natural is the self recrimination that follows.
Dads have an unfairly bad rep when it comes to their appearance. If someone’s out of shape, we call it a ‘Dad Bod’. We’re expected to resign ourselves to a lifetime of baggy sweatshirts and lounge pants because what’s the point in wearing a Ted Baker suit that’s going to get covered in baby puke? It’s important, though, to assert your sense of identity through your appearance after your children are born.
But my children are what’s important
Many parents (Mums and Dads) tend to focus all of their attention on their children when they’re first born. While of course your children are hugely important, they’re not all that’s important. Even when faced with the inevitable business and stress of parenthood, it’s important to take pride in your appearance. As much as you tell yourself you don’t care about your appearance any more or you’re happy to let yourself go, it’s important to remember that good self image will not only reduce stress but make you a better, happier Dad. And if you happen to turn heads walking down the street with your kids, so much the better!
The one place you really can’t afford to let your appearance go is at work. As tired and spent as you may feel, turning up on your first day back after the birth of your kids looking like you’ve been dragged through a hedge is sure to raise eyebrows. In fact, the birth of your kids is a great opportunity to show your colleagues (and higher ups) the new, more mature, more responsible and super professional you. Rocking up in a sharp new suit or slim fitting Dickies 872 work pants is a great way to show your workplace that you’re not only ready to juggle the pressures of work and family, but you’ve bounced back better than ever. Looking good at work will not only give you more confidence but improve your chances of rising to the top.
By all means dress for comfort at home, but as important as it is to dress well for others, it’s important to dress well for you. Don’t dress for comfort at the expense of looking good or feeling good about yourself. After all your children want a happy, confident role model who knows their style and has the confidence to wear it. Being a Dad shouldn’t cramp your style… It should elevate it!