I got absolutely rocked by a quote/idea about 3-4 years ago from a close mentor of mine that changed everything about how I see fatherhood and the journey we are on now as a family.
Essentially it was that “most kids are being raised in a metaphorical orphanage, a primarily peer raised environment with one or two adult supervisors spread throughout.” And if I look at the landscape when I was growing up I can’t disagree. The shaping presence of my life, simply by the nature of the hours spent in certain settings (school, video game parties, sports, etc) was primarily peer based, to my detriment.
But the cool part is, fathers especially, we have the ability to craft the environment in our family that leads to the most flourishing. It took work and leaps of faith and life restructuring but we can change things, we can do things differently, and we can nudge our family towards decisions that lead to more heart capturing of our child, more presence, and more shared activity that leads to strong relational bonds and more joy for everyone.