The West Wing & Fatherhood

Have any of you seen The West Wing? I have. My wife loves it, and so do I. We’re currently re-watching it and one of the episodes we saw tonight resonated with me as a father to be.

It was towards the start of season 5. President Bartlet’s daughter was missing, he had recused himself of the Presidency temporarily and the world was seemingly going to pot in and around America.


Not read the article (it’s from 1993!) so I can’t comment on the sub, but Fatherhood is important.

But what got me was the tangential story-line whereby Toby Ziegler became a Father to twins. We saw him fall in love with his children. He didn’t know if he had the capacity to do that, but he did. He thought he was nervous because of that but no, it was because every father is nervous ahead of the birth of their child.

Actually, this narrative did more for me than I’d even realised watching it, and have now worked out when writing about it. Wherever you’re coming from as an expectant father the likelihood is you’ll be questioning how you’ll do it, knowing deep down you will, but how? And what and so on. In those few scenes Toby is that expectant father, the expectant father we all are. And he did it.


I wonder if they do in the UK? No, really, I do. Now.

It gives strength that we all can. And for me, as a great fan of TV and cinema over the years, it works for me.



  1. dadvworld · March 29, 2016

    I was nervous. During the pregnancy I was nervous thinking, I want him to be cool. I know sounds daft, I wanted him to be outgoing and confident, have that edge to him but be a nice guy. Then came the birth and I realised there’s only one single thing I really genuinely wanted and that was for him to be healthy! Just be born healthy and we will sort the rest out later.


  2. 80's Dad · March 29, 2016

    Sounds very obvious when I think about it. I don’t know what my baby will be, or even yet whether we’ll meet them. I hope very much for the latter and really am not concerned by the former – just wanna get to meet a healthy them 🙂


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