When it comes to raising little ones in the District, moms have a ton of ways to find other women for camaraderie and idea sharing—from mommy-and-me playgroups to girls night out meet-ups. But, should mamas have all the fun? These dad-only groups think not. Read on to learn what our favorite dude orgs have to offer, and how they can help you be the “best dad in the world”.
For Stay at Home Dads: D.C. Metro Dads
In a town filled with so many teleworkers and women breadwinners, it’s no wonder a group like this was launched. D.C. Metro Dads is a network of stay-at-home dads living in the D.C. metro area. The groups main goal is to support other stay-at-home dads (and dads considering it) by helping to reduce the isolating feeling that can easily creep in. Think: you take your kid to story time and you’re the only dad in sight; it might be hard to want to go back. Currently, the group has outposts across D.C., Maryland, and Virginia that organize playgroups, social networking, Dads Night Outs.
Sign me up! Go to the D.C. Metro Dads homepage, and follow the links to join one of their groups. Once accepted to the group, you can send messages out to the rest of the members. The organizers encourage civility (not a problem!), but they try not to discourage any topic from being discussed amongst members in a frank and honest manner.
For Father-Figures: Daddy and Little Me
What parent doesn’t wish for a few extra hours in the day to spend some QT time with the bambinos? Daddy and Little Me can’t magically create those extra hours, but they can help guys—dads, uncles, sept-fathers, God-fathers, etc.—fill the hours they do have with meaningful activities. From hiking and fishing to frozen yogurt runs and movie matinees, this community of father figures is based in Arlington, Va, but you can find them all over the District. Stay tuned for their next “Coffee and Conversation” where they meet early Saturday morning to discuss everything from books they’ve read to general parenting issues.
Sign me up! Start by joining the DLM online community by signing up on the organizations website. Follow them on Twitter for up to the minute updates on future and ongoing events and meet-ups.
For Brand New Dads: DC Dads
New dads have a few of the same hurdles to overcome as their new mom counterparts. Mainly the lack of sleep and…the lack of sleep. Enter DC Dads, a meet-up group that gives dads opportunities to get out of the house (with their kids) and meet other new fathers for play dates, socializing, and relaxing. An emphasis on relaxing. It helps tremendously to see and talk shop with other newbie dads who are experiencing the same wins and frustrations (er, sleepless nights) as you.
Sign me up! To join, go to the groups website and click on “Join Us,” where you can sign up directly or through Facebook. If you have any questions beforehand, contact meet-up organizers John Wilson, Mike Henry, and Graham King who can help you out.
Are you a member of an awesome parenting group? Tell us about it in the comments section below.
Photos courtesy of virgohobbs, Robert Scoble, and Liz Henry (all via Creative Commons)