Are Dads the Messier Parent?

messy like daddyIn a recent study, researchers discovered that 88 percent of parents think that dad is the dirtier parent (I’m sure it was funded by my wife). Okay, I will admit that I am the dirtier parent, but I wouldn’t really call myself dirty. I just have a higher tolerance for clutter than my wife does.

Here’s my philosophy: As parents of three children, our house is not going to win the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval. Dirty dishes in the sink can wait until the next morning. Stepping over the clothes on the floor is easier than picking them up. And if I want to put my feet on the couch while wearing my shoes, it’s my prerogative. Of course I got a C in philosophy and my wife informs me that I’m no Aristotle when it comes to cleanliness.

I knew things were bad when my kids got into my car one day and marveled that it was actually clean.

“Wow, Daddy,” said my son. “We can actually sit down in the back sit without having to move stuff.”

That was the day I told the kids that Chuck E. Cheese was dead.

Now I do teach my children the importance of being neat and organized. They know that they are responsible for picking up after themselves and keeping the house clean. My sons are pretty good at tidying up. My daughter – not so much. When she was younger, we read her a book called Messy Bessey. I think we may have inadvertently introduced her to her role model.

Although I blame that slob Bessey for corrupting my daughter, my wife blames me. She likes to say something about me modeling the behavior blah, blah, blah…

One Saturday, I tried to earn a few points by cleaning the garage. After several grueling hours, the garage was spotless and cars could actually drive inside.

“Thank you, honey,” she said. “The garage looks nice. Now can you move your stuff off the island in the kitchen and pick up your magazines off the living room floor?”

A man’s work is never done.

Stay Strong,

mochadad logo square jpg




Join the conversation: Are dads the messier parent?

About author

Frederick J. Goodall

Frederick J. Goodall is the founder of Mocha Dad - a parenting website focused on fatherhood. He is passionate about parenting and helping men to be great dads, husbands, and role models. You can contact him at or on Twitter at

The Hand of The Father

This is one of my favorite photos of my daughter and me. I will always see her as the little girl who likes to hold ...