Alvin: Who are you, what do you do, and what do you enjoy most about it?
Corey: I’m Dr. Corey Allan, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist by training, and also a writer, blogger, and teacher. What I love most about what I do is the chance to be involved in people’s lives and to be part of their life as they begin to make things better. I also love the flexibility that comes with what I do, as it allows me to be the primary care giver for my kids, while my wife works full time.
Alvin: In your opinion what does it mean to be a father today?
Corey: Being a father today means a lot of different things, the most important of which is being present in the lives of your wife and children. Nothing can replace the role of a father, but it’s also not as difficult to be a good father as society has seemed to believe. To be a father you just have to be present, pay attention, love, and interact with your family.
Alvin: What are your favorite activities you enjoy most with your children?
Corey: I have a daughter, age 5, and a son, age 3. What I love most is the times wrestling with both of them. Tackling, laughing, chasing. I also enjoy coloring with my daughter and playing trains and cars with my son. But nothing beats the connection I get when they’re climbing all over me in hopes of getting me to the ground.
Alvin: In your opinion what does it mean to be a man today?
Corey: This is a tough one as there seems to have been a shift in men over the generations. Some men seem to believe that they need to be Nice Guys while others turn to the more Machismo extreme. The best answer I can provide to this is what I mentioned earlier. Being a man means you show up. When it comes to children, especially boys, masculinity bestows masculinity – it’s the only way it happens.
Alvin: Tell a story, name something that you’ve done or experienced that became your largest step to manhood?
Corey: The largest thing I’ve experienced on my journey is when I began backpacking as a young adult. Spending time out in nature with other men, having to survive with only what you carry, and slowing down to talk, think, and interact has shaped my journey into becoming the man I am today. It was also while backpacking that I read John Eldredge’s Wild At Heart, a great read in my opinion.
Alvin: What personal advice do you have for fathers and men navigating their way through fatherhood and manhood?
Corey: Trust your gut. Don’t think your way through every situation, slow down and experience every situation. And the other advice, develop a good relationship with a couple of other men. This is probably one of the best things you can do for your wife and children.