Three TEDx talks for Father’s Day

Although Father’s Day comes over a month after Mother’s Day, it doesn’t mean our dads should be an afterthought. Below, three TEDx talks that speak to the love and compassion fathers feel for their children.

Proud to call you my transgender son | Skip Pardee | TEDxReno
At TEDxReno, Skip Pardee shared a photo of his smiling, happy family, telling the audience: “This is what compassion, understanding, acceptance and most of all unconditional love will get you.”

Pardee raised his transgender son Dana, as a daughter, he says. But when Dana was 21, she came out as transgender. Throughout a passionate, emotional talk, Pardee speaks about the transgender experience, the use of pronouns, the high rate of depression and suicide that affects the transgender community and their need for love and compassion.

“You need to sit down with your child and tell them that you love them and you will support them all the way,” he says. “You have no idea how important it is to that child. Love your family, take care of your family and love and support your transgender child, that’s my message here today.”

The Power of a Parent’s Voice | Lawrence Bartley | TEDxSingSing
When Lawrence Bartley’s son was born weighing less than two pounds and with some serious health issues, Bartley was in a maximum-security prison, unable to be with his family in the hospital.Frustrated by his inability to do something, Bartley would call his wife and ask her to hold the phone close to his son so he could hear his father’s voice.

“Although I knew that he probably couldn’t understand the words I was saying, I chose to speak to him anyway in hopes that his soul would somehow understand,” Bartley says. As his son’s health improved, Bartley’s fellow inmates wanted to help out and made certain that Bartley was given more than his share of phone time.

In an emotional talk, Bartley speaks about that healing process, the power of community and how his son is doing today.

Changing the world one playground at a time | G Cody QJ Goldberg | TEDxPortland
“Play is perfect,” says Cody Goldberg at TEDxPortland. “Play is our entrée into the world of our bodies and our outside world; play is quite literally how we learn.”

When Goldberg’s daughter Harper was born with a condition that would require her to spend the rest of her life in a wheelchair, he realized the local playgrounds weren’t built for someone like his daughter in mind. He started Harper’s Playground whose mission is to “inspire vital communities by creating innovative playgrounds for people of all abilities.”

During his talk, Goldberg speaks about his decision to give up his career in order to design innovate playgrounds, how Harper’s Playground has become his life passion and about his goal of helping to build a world that places a higher premium on what “inclusion” means.

“A community that values all of its members equally is a treasure and it’s something we should strive towards,” he says.

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