Dads offer their answer to Mumsnet – by joining the blogging craze

Fathers bring a new perspective to online diaries – and are the next big advertising demographic, says Susie Mesure

To their blogging-addicted other halves, they are simply “DH”: internet shorthand for darling, dear – or even deaf – husband. But the bug is catching: the number of dads starting their own parenting blogs has soared in the past 12 months.

Dad bloggers will take centre-stage for the first time at this weekend’s parenting blogging conference, BritMums Live, which features the first dads’ panel since it started five years ago. Susanna Scott, who runs the BritMums blogging network, says: “First mums started blogging to regain their voice, and now dads want their own voice too. And why not? They’re 50 per cent of the parents.”

Around 5 per cent – or 250 – of the UK’s 5,000 parenting blogs are written by dads, up from barely 100 a year ago. John Adams, who writes at, says he had had enough of fathers being frozen out of the parenting scene. “My aim is to highlight the gender barriers men face as parents and to raise the profile of fathers,” he says. “If they are bombarded by the notion that they are second-class citizens, it does nothing to encourage them to be better parents.”

Mr Adams said fathers’ blogs tended to be more “issues-based” than their maternal equivalents. “Men tend to write about custody issues, education, and coming to terms with unwanted children. Women are more likely to blog about family life and post more photos of their children.”

Darren Coleshill, who writes at, thinks mums are more into talking online about arts and craft, adding: “The dad blogs, I think, often give a completely different take on subjects and perhaps don’t sugar-coat things so much. They say exactly what they think.”

 But other dads see more similarities than differences between what dads and mums write. Ben Wakeling, 28, a Warwickshire-based father of three who blogs at, says: “I’ve talked about my complete lack of sleep; about my views on breastfeeding and bottle-feeding. There’s no stigma any more. Dads are far more open … about these things.”

He thinks brands are “more tuned into the fact that fathers are writing about parenting issues”, adding that he has been asked to review anything from baby carriers to driving experience days. Mr Adams adds: “Businesses have contacted me to say they’ve realised they should be marketing to fathers as well. Some companies approach me because they’re keen to get fathers’ perspectives.”

Research shows that fathers are increasingly involved in deciding what gets bought in the shopping free-for-all that marks a new baby’s arrival, with around four in five dads helping to choose pushchairs or car seats.

Alan Halsall, chairman of the pram manufacturer Silver Cross, says the firm had fathers “very much in mind” with its latest model, designed in collaboration with Aston-Martin – though he admitted he had yet to “reach out” to dad bloggers.

Dads were admittedly scarce at yesterday’s oestrogen-packed opening day at BritMums Live, something that Bristol-based Lewis Lippiatt, who started blogging 15 months ago “to give me a hobby when my son was born”, confessed was “overwhelming”. He added: “We feel like a minority because we are one. But it’s growing.”

At this year’s meeting, in January, 44 brand representatives from Dove Men+Care to Maclaren targeted attendees in an attempt to reach what the US trendspotter Marian Salzman has called the next big advertising demographic.

 “Watch out,” said Ms Salzman, who heads the media company Havas PR, “for the rise of child-orientated, masculinity-challenging programme makers, brands and advertisers to reflect the essence of this emerging new reality.”

That said, Mark Richards, who writes at, warns: “I don’t think PRs take parent bloggers as seriously as they should. They think parents will fall over with gratitude just because they’ve been given something. But I want to maintain the quality of my blog, so I turn down nine in every 10 approaches I get.”

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Business Development Executive / Digital Marketing Executive

    £26000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A luxury beauty house with a nu...

    Recruitment Genius: Housekeepers - Immediate Start

    £8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This company are currently recruiting new exp...

    Recruitment Genius: Head Concierge

    £25000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This award winning Property Man...

    Recruitment Genius: Content, SEO and PPC Executive

    £20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has ari...

    Day In a Page

    On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

    On your feet!

    Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
    Liverpool close in on Milner signing

    Liverpool close in on Milner signing

    Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
    With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

    The big NHS question

    Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
    Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

    Thongs ain't what they used to be

    Big knickers are back
    Thurston Moore interview

    Thurston Moore interview

    On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
    In full bloom

    In full bloom

    Floral print womenswear
    From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

    From leading man to Elephant Man

    Bradley Cooper is terrific
    In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

    In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

    Dame Colette Bowe - interview
    When do the creative juices dry up?

    When do the creative juices dry up?

    David Lodge thinks he knows
    The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

    Fashion's Cher moment

    Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
    Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

    Health fears over school cancer jab

    Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
    Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

    'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

    Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
    Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

    Weather warning

    Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
    LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

    High hopes for LSD

    Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
    German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

    Saving Private Brandt

    A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral