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How a local group unites stay-at-home dads

Stay at home dad
Posted at 7:06 AM, Jun 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-18 08:53:59-04

LEE'S SUMMIT, Mo. — Stay-at-home father, Shannon Carpenter wants to change the stay-at-home-dad stereotypes because what he and other dads do isn't babysitting, but parenting.

Carpenter is a part of a group called KC Dads, where other stay-at-home fathers share advice, take trips and share memories with one another about raising their children.

"I went to a moms group once or twice and they weren't accepting dads as members at that time," Carpenter said. "But it was very very lonely until I found my KC Dads, and then everything changed."

It's a group that's been his support system.

"You get a chance to have that mentor right then and learn those skills as you go, but also have that emotional and mental support in the grind of parenting, especially after 13 years," Carpenter said.

For the past 13 years, Carpenter has been a stay-at-home parent.

"I wasn't laid off from my job, I wasn't forced into this. Most of us are not," Carpenter said. "I became a stay-at-home dad because it was the right move for my family."

It's a move his daughter, Genevieve enjoys.

"It is nice having like a father figure in whatever I do," she said. "And he’s always supporting, no matter what."

Each year, Carpenter and four other dads go on a dad's trip.

"It's five dads and 16 kids," Carpenter said. "And we pick a direction and we just go, we road trip. No moms, just dads and kids."

It's those memories Carpenter hopes his children will always remember.

"Because I know when life gets tough, and it will, everyone goes through hard times. It's those memories that they're going to lean on to get them through. That is the whole purpose of my job here," Carpenter said. "It's more than cleaning a house, it's more than cooking, it's creating those memories that they will have when they really need them when life is hard."

The dads group also has a podcast filled with laughs, memories and advice for dads.

In October, Carpenter's book will be released. It's called "The Ultimate Stay-At-Home Dad - Your Essential Manual for Being an Awesome Full Time Father."

In the book, readers will hear advice from more than 50 dads across the country.