“As a teenage youth I romanticised of what love was to be, how was I to know that my true real love is a wife plus family. I could never have known that this immense love I have inside, without a complete family it would probably just hide. She holds my hand as I do hers, it’s hard to describe the happiness that stirs. I know that inside our hearts we have our very special bond, and if I need to show some discipline our love will go beyond. I work hard all day with so much time away, the last thing that I want is for princess’ love to stray. As a dad I worry so much if I spend enough time, sharing with her things that she feels are fine. I just keep on trying because I know in my head, that the love I share with her will keep our relationship fed. There are those very special times at Christmas and Easter, when her absolute innocence and trust allow my fun to muster. I can be a big kid and have some of the childhood I never had, do the things that kids do and enjoy all the fads. I love to tell of her achievements and triumphs, I can never lose this love inside even when she’s defiant. At times I want the whole world to see, just how special this feeling is that erupts inside me. As a male in our society it’s seen as being so weak, to publicise my emotions and let them truly speak. There will come a time in this dad’s day, To display my emotions and not care if they think I’m gay. To show the true love that I feel deep down inside, that for once and for all I never again will hide.”
Participant – Matt Cole, 2002
It is very hard to find the balance between work and family and although the scale tends, on occasions to tip towards work, Matt is well aware of it happening. He is a fantastic father and his words express this devotion and love not only to Stef, but to Nat and Mish too. It is sad that heads turn when a man hugs or kisses their child. It is sad that we have become afraid of our own nightmares.
Photographer – Belinda Mason , 2004