I am a big fan of the 92nd Street Y – let me explain:
- Their director, Sally Tannen, holds weekly parenting discussions every Wednesday from 10:30am – noon, covering a range of topics – eating solids, childcare, gender expectations, baby temperament, etc. These weekly discussion last about an hour and are filled with about 20 – 25 new moms and me. Lately, there have been a few dads attending as well. I love going because it only costs $10, my son loves to play on the rug with the other babies, and it is interesting to hear the range of opinions from all of the parents in the group. I can’t believe that more stay at home dads don’t attend! Maybe it’s because not enough dads know about it (the reason for this posting) or they are intimidated by a large group of new moms. Either way, the 92nd Street Y always makes us feel welcome.
- The 92nd Street Y is one of the only places that I am aware of that recognizes new dads and actually has a class designed specifically for new dads with kids from 0 – 1 year old. Their class takes place on Sunday mornings and is facilitated by a guy who holds a PsyD. The good: it is only for 5 sessions lasting an hour each, loosely structured and covers a range of topics, quality bonding time with your baby, you meet some great guys (I know because I participated in this class last Fall and still meet up with a lot of the guys for Sunday Brunch). The bad: the group consists of mainly working dads (I did not meet any other stay at home dads), and takes away some valuable weekend time with your wife.
- The 92nd Street Y has tons of programs for parents to be as well as new parents including “rock & roll Baby” for 5 – 9 month old kids which Jake and I just finished. They also had the author of Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child – Marc Weissbluth – speak to parents one evening in March. Our NYC Dads Group is partnering with the Y at the end of the month when Dr. Michael Thompson, author of Raising Cain and Understanding Your Son’s Development, and psychologist, speaks to us about being a dad in tough economic times and the joys/challenges of being a stay at home dad.
I know I sound like a 92nd Street Y infomercial! What I am trying to say is that the Y offers top notch programs, so more Dads and Stay At Home Dads should take advantage of their resources…and then I won’t be the only stay at home dad participating in all of these classes by myself!
If some of you dads out there are taking classes somewhere that has classes specifically designed for dad’s or you are participating in a Parent & Me class that is so good you want to share it with the rest of us, please share and add a comment.