Jalen Ramsey is a football player in the NFL and he's also about to become a father for the second time. And this time he's decided to take paternity leave.
This week, ESPN published a column with this opening line: "Jalen Ramsey has left the Jaguars because of the impending birth of his second child, and the team has no idea when he will return." The columnist called paternity leave the "latest strange turn in Ramsey's" negotiations with his employer.
This is a problem.
When men are ridiculed for taking paternity leave or have their motives questioned, is it any wonder that the majority of fathers don't take paternity leave when it's available to them (even though 85% of dads say they desperately want to)?
As Fatherly points out, the validity of Ramsey's parental leave was also hotly debated on Twitter, and it's good to see that his employer, Jaguars owner Tony Khan came to his defense (even if they don't agree about his future with the team).
When a sportswriter took to Twitter, wondering if paternity leave was just a "convenient excuse" for Ramsey to quit playing for the Jaguars, Khan clapped back, calling the tweet appalling. "That is way out of line. You have no business questioning someone's family," he tweeted.
A man who is about to welcome his second child has decided to take parental leave to support his partner during her birth and postpartum recovery. That's his right and it should be respected. End of story.
Dads want to be involved fathers. Our society needs to stop questioning them when they stand up and do that.
You might also like:
- Don't underestimate the way paid paternity leave benefits moms, babies *and* companies
- Alexis Ohanian wants every father to take paternity leave
- Chance the Rapper postpones tour for paternity leave