(UPDATE) SAHD Alleges He Was Handcuffed And Detained At Park While Playing With His Kids

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Stay At Home dad So, we will take this with a grain of salt because it is from Reddit and I haven’t seen any police stories about this, but a stay-at-home dad posted that he was minding his own business, playing with his two kids at a park, when the cops handcuffed him and detained him on the curb because he looked “suspicious.” I don’t know if this story is true or not, but I am going to state that it seems totally possible because a lot of people in this world are still shocked at the notion that a dad may actually be the primamry caregiver while the wife works outside the home. From Reddit:

I’m a SAHD with a 3 year old daughter and a 4 year old son. I sometimes find myself going out during the day to go shopping or to the playground and things like that. I get dirty looks from the moms all the time but I’ve learned to ignore them.

What bothers me the most is I sometimes get store managers and security guards asking me what I’m doing “out” at this time. Of course I don’t owe them any answer and I’m free to leave their store and I usually exercise my right to do so if they wish to lose a paying customer because of his gender.

But yesterday I took my 2 kids to the park and I was approached by a female police officer who wanted to know what I was doing there. I told her I was just playing with my children, and she said the department had received multiple complaints that I was acting “suspicious.” I replied that I didn’t feel the need to respond to those complaints since I had just as much of a right to be at the park as anyone else.

She then put me in hand cuffs in front of my kids and told me I was being investigated for disorderly conduct. This resulted in my kids throwing a tantrum, and I told her that this was unnecessary and I would gladly leave the park if that’s what she wished. It wouldn’t have been worth traumatizing my children over a principle. At that point a backup officer arrived who led my kids to his police car and I sat on a curb handcuffed with my kids watching for about 20 minutes. All the while mothers from a playgroup took pictures/videos of me with their phones. I’m guessing they’re the ones that complained.

After my background came back clean they let me go and said if they got any more complaints I would be arrested for loitering and my kids would be put in foster care. The whole experience was humiliating for me and traumatizing for my children. This happened a week ago and I’ve been afraid to go out with my kids without my wife for fear of a similar incident. I’ve talked to my wife about switching roles and she supports the idea. I’ll find a job and she’ll become a SAHM. It really seems like that would be the best thing for the children.

What the what? I can’t even fathom something like this happening to a mom who was hanging out at a park watching her kids play. And if this story is true, what the hell is wrong with these sanctimommies who sat there snapping photos and videotaping the incident? Why didn’t any of them mosey on over and explain the guy has kids and was just hanging out with them while they played? I’m sure if this did happen the kids were super traumatized by watching their dad being handcuffed and then the kids being led to a police car. Couldn’t the officers ask the kids if this was their father? Plus, I have never given a dad a “dirty” look when he is out and about with his kids with no female around. I just sort of assume that most dads are, you know, dads and they may take their kids on errands or to the park or wherever on occasion.

Some dads stay home. It’s normal and fine and there is nothing even that unusual about it. I think if I saw kids crying and freaking out and yelling “This guy is not my daddy” I would for sure call the cops, but kids playing at the park while their dad watches them? I don’t get it. A lot of commenters have suggested this guy file a complaint against the police department. I agree with them.

Update: our awesome reader Alice tipped us off to the fact this SAHD removed his post from reddit. But please continue writing SAHD at the park fanfiction, because it’s hilarious.

(Photo: Warren Goldswain /