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In this episode, I am talking with Brett Grayson, author of What Could Go Wrong?: My Mostly Comedic Journey Through Marriage, Parenting, and Depression. Grayson takes on many of the tough issues faced by parents during the first few years of family life with a great deal of humor and vulnerability. We discuss what led him to write his book, start his blog and how he has enlarged the discussion by sharing from a dad’s point of view. Grayson is a father of two young children and resides in New Jersey.
- Humor helps us move forward, especially when discussing difficult subject matters.
- Even though pregnancy is primarily a woman’s experience, a man also goes through his own set of struggles and emotions when becoming a father, which aren’t often discussed.
Audrey: “In this book, I think you have been able to combine difficult topics with humor and I’m guessing that is resonating with people.”
Brett: “We’ve been through some rough things: my wife’s first pregnancy, postpartum issues, topics that women discuss a lot. I hadn’t seen too many fathers talking about it from their standpoint: what it was like for the father to go through; what our emotions were like.”
Brett: “I really felt that the humor would be the way that the people would be able to relate to what I was saying and it would make it more palatable to read.”
Audrey: “You’re so right. The things that happen in pregnancy seem to be a lot more about the woman’s experience but it’s true the father has a lot going on, too. I think you did open up a great line of conversation and discussion for men.”
Brett: “Men experience all kinds of struggles and emotions. It’s okay to be open about it. You can still be a strong man and feel masculine in your own skin without feeling like you can’t express yourself.”
Brett: “It’s amazing to me that if you have a heart problem, its totally okay to see a doctor; it’s okay if you have a broken bone to see an orthopedist, but if you’re going to see a doctor about an issue with your brain then it needs to be secretive in some sense. I’ve never understood that. Hopefully, we are breaking down those walls now.”
Brett: “I think there needs to be openness in your relationships. I think if you can’t tell your spouse that you’re struggling, that’s a problem. You need to be able to lean on each other and explain to each other that you’re struggling.”
Audrey: “I think you have a really important message to share. I think it’s wonderful that you’ve put yourself out there and shared some difficult stories. I think your end result will be that more people will get the help they need — that everyone needs at some point, if not throughout their lives.”
10 Reasons I Heart Camp (mentioned in this episode)
If you enjoyed this episode, you might want to listen to a few of my other interviews with dedicated dads, including:
Ep. 18: Adventures in Parenting with Tom Holland
Ep. 5: Using a Growth Mindset with Jeff Cheley
Helping Kids Through Their “Low Point”