How To Be The Best Dad In The Galaxy
Star Wars' Darth Vader is the best dad in the world, no, the best father in the whole galaxy. Here's why Vader is so brilliant with his kids…..
Those Star Wars films give him a really bad press. The truth is, after a long day at the Death Star, Darth Vader loves coming home to his adoring kids. Why do they love their father so much? Because he is the best dad in the galaxy. Here's how Darth Vader does it…. Watch and learn...
Step 1: Crush rebel alliances
When children play, they will often experiment with the dark side of the force, for instance by lightsabering a rude word into a neighbour's hedge. A good father makes sure that this kind of genuine naughtiness does not go unpunished
Make sure that the boundaries between the dark side and light side are always clear and consistent, and then your kids will come to know good and evil as clearly as it is set out in one of those billion dollar-grossing Hollywood sci-fi classics.
Step 2: Make the force strong in them
You'll be wanting to bring up capable, confident underlings robust enough to take over your Empire. So get them doing new things, like reading, cycling, chess, geo-political analysis, jousting, sword fighting and scrabble....
Give them plenty of chances to be succeed, so they come to know victory like an old friend. Praise their successes, and make sure they don't take failures to heart.
Step 3: Ignore Jedi mind tricks
Your kids may well be masters of manipulation already. The skill is to know when to let them win, and when to stand firm. Vader knows kids need to feel they are listened to, and that a biscuit isn't going to do her any harm, so he capitulated, and now he has a happy little Leia instead of a grumpy, hungry one.
Step 4: Never show your dark side
Every dad loses the plot sometimes, but remember that shouting is always a waste of your time, and very unpleasant as well.
If their childlike ways are getting to you, look within yourself. Remember how influential you are to them, and how scary it is to be shouted out when you are little. Simmer down, count to ten and cut them some slack.
Step 5: Become a child again
After a hard day's work, you'll want to put your feet up. But Vader knows that good dads are never off duty. Being affectionate and warm when you'd rather be reading the papers, and then getting up and playing one more game of spaceships before bed time is what makes the difference between an OK Dad, and the best dad in the galaxy.
After they've gone to bed, you can relax with a nice cup of tea and a biscuit... ohhhh dear, perhaps you can't.
May the force be with you, and your kids.