Friday, June 17, 2016

A Tribe Called Dad: Finding Your Community of Dads

Since I've become a dad, I've sought camaraderie within a number of organizations and groups that cater to dads.

I also belong to a number of mom communities, and general parenting communities as well, but the dad ones speak a little more to me, have helped me find my Tribe of Dads

Here's a list of just some of the Dad Communities I belong to:

City Dads Group  
When I was a newbie father, I discovered a cool meetup group that had started a few months before I became a dad-- the NYC Dads Group. Founded by Lance Somerfeld (and then quickly joined by his partner Matt Schneider) the NYC Dads Group went from about 100 dads when I joined to a 22 city network of dads that number in the thousands.

 When I lived in NY I was very involved in the organization (I was one of the first co-hosts of its podcast The Modern Dads Podcast, and I still occasionally contribute) I was the cultural coordinator, so organized a few meetups, and as well I was a pretty frequent contributor to their blog.

 Since I've moved to Chicago, I've become involved in the local chapter Chicago Dad's Group, and write for their blog (local and national) and also do some cultural coordination.  Of course, my son is older now, and my need for hooking up with other dads has lessened a little bit.  It's still a great organization, and I think an essential group to belong to if you are an involved dad or a primary caregiver, especially a newbie. Although it's organized online, the heart of the group is face to face meetups.

Dad 2.0 Summit
I've attended every one of these blogging conferences so far.  Founded by Doug French and John Pacini, it's an annual conference where influencer dads (bloggers, youtubers, snapchatters, periscopers, tweeters, facebookers, and instagrammista's) meet corporate brands and have conversations about influence, about policy and culture, and about working together.  I'm a tiny fish in this pretty large pond (but still a pond compared to the Ocean that is Mom blogging conferences, including its sister conference, which I've also attended.)  I love going every year because I love the dads that go, and some of the guys I've met at this conference have turned into relatively close chums (considering they live around the world)   It's really a must-go conference for me.

Life Of Dad
Life of Dad is a blogging platform and community. They offer a forum, a blogging platform, a podcast, a videocast On their site you can start a blog, start a conversation, watch a video, and meet hundreds of other parents.  I've met most of the founders at Dad 2.0, and they are good guys.  I've also recently started working with them as an influencer partner-- ie, they occasionally put me up for blogging or other influencer work.  If you don't have a dad blog yet, I think it's a great starter place to check out and see if you like blogging.  There are lots of helpful people on site, and the community is great.

Dad Blogger's Facebook Group
Started by sadly now-deceased friend Oren Miller (Blogger Father), this group has grown to over 1000 guys all who have blogs.  It's a closed group, meaning you have to be approved, and primarily to do that, go to the site, and send a message, with a link to your blog.  The basic rules of the conference are to not be a dick, and for the most part, that works. There are share threads (threads where you can share your blog posts) and lots of helpful people.  It can get a little raucous, and occasionally a little dick-jokey, but it's one of the best ways to meet a whole bunch of dad bloggers all at once.

National At-Home Dad Network
This is a conference and advocacy group that helps connect at-home dads with each other, with best practices, education, support, and community.  It has an annual conference every year (but sadly I've never gone-- it always conflicts with something-- in the past it was the Jewish holidays-- this year it's my hard fought tickets to Hamilton.)  I know a lot of the organizers, and they are smart, compassionate, and very eager to help.  If you are an At-Home Dad, I can highly recommend this group.

These are great resources to start with if you are a dad looking for your tribe.

Please list links to your community(ies) in the comments!

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