Parental Advice

Trimble County author encourages
men to be good father figures

Hines’ book offers tips to
promote a close knit family

By Helen E. McKinney
Contributing Writer

BEDFORD, Ky. (July 2011) – Now that Jerry Hines has written his first book, he feels a weight has been lifted off his shoulders. Compelled to write a book that would motivate fathers to take an active role in their children’s lives was a huge undertaking for Hines, who works as a steel mill safety coordinator.
So strongly did he feel that this is what he should do that three years later, “Be The Dad You Wish You Had,” is now available for sale on bookshelves. It is a compilation of 52 stories about the “experiences in the Hines’ house,” said Hines, 52. “It’s things we’ve done to help our own children.”

Jerry Hines

Photo provided

Jerry Hines, a father
of four, has penned a
book on fatherly advice.

The idea for the book came to Hines four years ago while his family was relaxing in their living room after his children’s friends had gone home. He and wife, Susan, have three girls and one boy. One of the girls said her friend had confided in her that Hines was “a better father to her than her biological father,” he said.
Hines felt saddened at the thought of all the good times the girl was missing out on with her father. One of his other daughters chimed up and made a similar comment about a friend who wished she had parents like Hines and his wife.
Hines was a bit shocked. He considered he and wife Susan to be “strict parents.”
“We believe in discipline. We believe in work. There is a curfew, and you do not break it.”
But when he questioned his teenage children as to why their friends thought so highly of him, the answer was simple: “We listened to their friends when they spoke to us. We welcomed them into our home and took the time to learn their names. We looked them in the eye when we spoke to them. We hugged them, invited them to eat supper with us and made them feel loved. We treated them with respect.”
He began to ponder what he could do to help kids on a larger scale and immediately knew “I was supposed to write a book.” As a safety coordinator for a steel mill in Gallatin County for more than 20 years, Hines didn’t exactly have a background in journalism. But this didn’t matter; he had a story to tell, and he told it in his own way.
“Twelve people helped edit the book and give feedback during the writing process,” said Hines. He took what he knew about – his own experiences and how he handled them – and turned them into a book that has been published by WestBow Press, a subsidiary of Thomas Nelson Publishers in Nashville, Tenn.
The book is available through Amazon.com, Barns & Noble Bookpress, Target.com, Borders and Karen’s Book Barn in La Grange. Hines provides scripture at the end of each short chapter as a “challenge to dads,” he said. Principles highlighted within the stories were “strongly influenced by the Christian principles that I believe in.”
Hines believes that “the art of becoming a good dad has been lost. I wrote this book to help dads see that being a dad is about giving of your time and love, not just money. I want every man and boy from 13 to 93 to read this book and feel the awesome responsibility they have.”
Hines has a very strong, positive relationship with his own father. “He is a spectacular guy.”
He still sees his father two to three times a week and even bought an adjoining 300-acre farm in Bedford, Ky. Hines hopes to pass on to his children the values he learned from his father.
He has lived in Trimble County since 1972, when his family moved to Bedford from Louisville. He attended the University of Kentucky, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology.
“Be The Dad You Wish You Had” sheds new light on day-to-day experiences in practical, down-to-earth terms. The first chapter deals with helping children handle bullies. Circumstances don’t always change, “You have to learn to deal with it,” said Hines.
A chapter titled, “Walking in Ice Cream,” challenges fathers to encourage their children to try new things. Another chapter, “Sasquatch at the Door,” deals with issues that arose when his teenage daughters started dating.
“If I can help kids by impacting young dads, I win,” said Hines.

• To learn more about Hines or his book, visit: www.bethedadyouwishyouhad.com.

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