Neil Patrick HarrisWhen men become fathers, the experience can change them deeply in amazing and mind-blowing ways. It may not change them in the exact sense that it changes women if we become mothers, but it's definitely one of life's most meaningful, most difficult, and most joyous roles a man can take on in life. Becoming a parent and raising children changes the way we see our own parents, our own childhoods, our inner selves, our priorities, and how we choose to face the world.
From super-dad Brad Pitt and unconventional rapper dad Snoop Doggy Dog to new twins dad Neil Patrick Harris and dreamy, cool dad Mark Wahlburg, let's hear quotes from 15 dedicated celebrity dads who best put into words the life-altering experience of fatherhood.
1. Actor Mark Wahlburg to Boston Common in 2010
"I want to give my kids the world, but I also want them to appreciate everything, to succeed, to be good people, to enjoy life. This is my most important role. If I fail at this, I fail at everything."
2. Actor Neil Patrick Harris on Twitter in 2011
"Babies laughing is like opium."
3. President Barack Obama in his 2011 essay "Being the Father I Never Had"
"Our kids understand that life won't always be perfect, that times get tough and that even great parents don't get everything right. More than anything, they just want us to be there-to be present, to care about their lives."
4. Coldplay singer Chris Martin to Blender in 2008
"Men should always change diapers. It's a very rewarding experience. It's mentally cleansing. It's like washing dishes, but imagine if the dishes were your kids, so you really love the dishes."
5. Actor Brad Pitt on the Today show in 2006
"Fatherhood is the best thing I ever did. It changes your perspective. You can write a book, you can make a movie, you can paint a painting, but having kids is really the most extraordinary thing I have taken on."
6. Actor Forest Whitaker to Esquire in 1997
"The other night, I was walking down the stairs behind one of my daughters -- I have three, and one son, ages eight to sixteen. I was tired, and she was goofing around, you know, like kids do, doing all this stupid stuff on the stairs. And I was thinking, Please just go down the stairs and let's get you to bed. It's after your bedtime. I've had enough for one day. And then I sort of caught myself. I snapped out of it. I was like, Dude, you should be dancing down the stairs behind her!"
7. Rapper Snoop Doggy Dog to Martha Stewart in 2010
"Know when to lie to your kids."
8. Chef and activist Jamie Oliver to The Violet Hour in 2009
"Home life is a reversal of work. I used to be polite about it but, really, I’m their bitch."
9. Actor Hugh Jackman
"Becoming a father, I think it inevitably changes your perspective of life. The simplest things in life are completely satisfying."
10. Actor Daniel Day Lewis to The Sun in 2008
"When it comes to parenthood everyone thinks they will be terrible at it. We don't think we have it in us. Then you find out that you do, which truly is a miracle in life."
11. Freestyle motocross motorcycle racer Carey Hart on Twitter in 2011
"My wife @Pink owns my heart. And she just gave me my best achievment of my life #WillowSageHart. Medals and flips got nothing on her."
12. Actor Orlando Bloom to The Daily Mirror in 2011
"It’s honestly the best thing in the world – yes, you don’t get much sleep but you don’t care."
13. Actor Philip Seymour Hoffman to People in 2007
"When you become a parent, you look at your parents differently. You look at being a child differently. It's an awakening, a revelation that you have."
14. Singer David Bowie to Esquire in 1994
"I don't expect the human race to progress in too many areas. However, having a child with an ear infection makes one hugely grateful for antibiotics."
15. Actor Christian Bale to Esquire in 2010
"I've got incredible pride for my family. I've absolutely fallen into that cliché of a dad who could just happily talk about my daughter endlessly."
Which quote about fatherhood do you love most?
Image via david_shankbone/Flickr