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(QCOSTARICA – By Roberto Cruz, Vozdeguanacaste.com The arrival of a child is seen as a gift of love. Your life, time and heart are no longer just yours but belong to this being who has just been born.

There is no doubt about the happiness you feel when you stop being just a couple and head down the road to starting a family, but you also have to recognize that raising a child is no easy task. And it is even harder if the traditional “mother, father and child” family model is altered by a separation or the death of a partner.

Usually it is the mother who takes on the responsibility of child rearing when parents separate, but there are exceptions too. There are single fathers who take on the great challenge and the difficulties of supporting a family on their own.

These men— who fill the role of mom and dad at the same time— take on challenging situations daily that few would even imagine.

Single fathers face a machista (chauvinist) society that has designated women as the ones responsible for raising children, since girls are raised to be mothers from childhood. They cook, wash and clean. They go to school meetings and are they are the ones who buy clothes and food. When a man decides to take charge of a family and a home, he chooses to break the rules, in addition to continuing with the social legacy of being the household provider.

But being a single dad is not impossible. Many go ahead and succeed at doing it, being exemplary fathers in their communities that deserve recognition. This month, for Father’s Day, The Voice of Guanacaste applauds four men who battle the norm and face the adventure of being a single dad each day.

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