Stigma Fighters: Doyin Richards

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Stigma Fighters: Doyin Richards

On the surface, 2014 was an amazing year. Here are some of the highlights:

  • I realized my dream of becoming a published author
  • I secured a second book deal with one of the most-respected publishers in the world (MacMillan)
  • I became a contributing writer for HuffPost Parents, AskMen, Parents Magazine, TODAY Parents, HLN, and The Good Men Project
  • I was interviewed 133 times on TV, radio, and print from outlets all over the world (including NPR, USA Today, CNN, Today Show, Katie Couric, Sunrise Australia, etc.)
  • I was able to quit my full-time corporate job
  • large companies offered to sponsor me
  • The Huffington Post recognized me in its year-end article as one of 15 people who are positively changing stereotypes in America
  • Out of the thousands of articles written on The Good Men Project’s website in 2014, an article I wrote was the most widely read of them all.

It looked like I had it all.

I didn’t.

I felt sad, empty, and completely unworthy. I just ignored those feelings and kept pushing forward. I smiled, I laughed, and I talked about how awesome my life was on social media because I believed it would make everything better.

It didn’t.

As I sat alone with my thoughts the other night, I promised myself that I’d experience *true* happiness in 2015. Not “I published a book” happiness, not “somebody wants to interview me” happiness, and not even “my kids give me so much joy” happiness (and they absolutely do). I’m talking about the simply rolling out of bed, smiling, and thinking, “I’m happy” kind of happiness. It’s something that many of you take for granted, but it’s been years since I’ve felt that way consistently.

Here’s the thing: All of us are fucked up. You, me, your spouse, your boss, your parents, your seemingly perfect neighbor with her seemingly perfect kids – ALL of us are fucked up. That’s one universal truth that everyone has in common. However, how we allow said “fuckedupedness” to affect our lives is what separates people from living constructive lives from destructive ones.

I own the fact that I’m fucked up. Do you? If not, the only person you’re fooling is yourself. Vulnerability is the new toughness.

I have to make some changes in my life in order to live my happiest life possible. Some of those changes are small and will only be noticeable to me. Other changes are huge and scare the ever-living shit out of me whenever I think about them.

I set big goals for myself in 2014 and for the most part, I crushed all of them. But what does any of it mean if you’re not truly happy? You can expect a very different Doyin this year. Why? Because I promised myself that I will experience true happiness in 2015 and beyond.

And I will.

– Doyin Richards: Author, activist, public speaker and founder of Daddy Doin’ Work.


Doyin Richards is an author, activist, public speaker, husband, and daddy dedicated to creating a world of good, involved fathers. His new book titled, Daddy Doin’ Work: Empowering Mothers To Evolve Fatherhood was recently released and you can follow his adventures in daddyhood on his Daddy Doin’ Work blogFacebookTwitter, and Instagram

By | 2015-02-17T11:33:22+00:00 January 26th, 2015|Categories: Brave People, Uncategorized|21 Comments


  1. Helen White January 27, 2015 at 2:05 am - Reply

    All power to the “you” goals. After all, if you’re not happy in yourself material things mean nothing.

    • Stigma Fighters January 27, 2015 at 3:25 pm - Reply

      That is quite true. Material things don’t have meaning without internal happiness.

  2. Kitt O'Malley January 27, 2015 at 4:26 am - Reply

    The depressed brain lies to us in the face of our achievements. Even when we generously give of ourselves to our family, to our community, and to the world at large, depression lies and says, “You are not worthy.” I say, “Depression, you lie!” You are not alone. I, too, have had similar thoughts and feelings in spite of evidence to the contrary. Thank you for honestly sharing your story with us. May 2015 be a better year. Bless you.

    • Stigma Fighters January 27, 2015 at 3:24 pm - Reply

      So true. Depression lies to us.

  3. Danny Price January 27, 2015 at 4:53 am - Reply

    I love your thought that we are all fucked up. I believe this to be true also, and accepting it gives me such a better perspective on life and more patience with myself and others. Thanks for sharing your story here, I hope 2015 is full of positive change for you!

    • Stigma Fighters January 27, 2015 at 3:24 pm - Reply

      I also appreciate this thought and (in a way) it is comforting).

  4. Stigma Fighters January 27, 2015 at 12:42 pm - Reply

    Doyin, I am honored to have your voice on here. We are all fucked up. And yet, the truth is we avoid this truth to put on a mask of “nothing’s wrong.” Thank you for being real and being a true friend.

  5. jess.⚓ January 27, 2015 at 12:50 pm - Reply

    I love your work Doyin! And I own my fucked upness too. I get what you’ve felt. I’ve been realizing and achieving my dreams and felt the same way as well.

  6. Doyin Richards January 27, 2015 at 2:04 pm - Reply

    Thanks for having me! I really enjoyed sharing my voice with you!

    • Stigma Fighters January 27, 2015 at 2:11 pm - Reply

      We love you!

  7. Jenna Goodwin January 27, 2015 at 2:17 pm - Reply

    Are we in the same head? I’m feeling the same way. It’s like no matter what I do, I’m “stuck”

    • Stigma Fighters January 27, 2015 at 2:18 pm - Reply


  8. Courtney Keesee January 27, 2015 at 3:19 pm - Reply

    This is amazing. “Fuckedupedness” is my new favorite word. So powerful

    • Stigma Fighters January 27, 2015 at 3:20 pm - Reply

      Me too! I love it!

  9. Aubrey Ortega January 27, 2015 at 4:10 pm - Reply

    Yes! This! Even the seemingly perfect neighbor lady… fucked up as well! So accurate. True happiness is something I’m not sure I’ll ever find, but it’s worth reaching for. Thanks for sharing!

  10. Dennis Sharpe January 27, 2015 at 6:59 pm - Reply

    Great post. Great perspective. I believe every word.

    So when you say that you will experience true happiness in 2015 and beyond… I know you will.

    You are awesome, sir. Keep it up!

  11. God Pikin January 28, 2015 at 1:47 am - Reply

    Oh, Doyin, my BFF in my head. Love you loads. Continue with your “fuckedupness” self. Continue to find happy (yes, I have been a follower for that long) and cheers to an awesome happy 2015

  12. Staziaface January 28, 2015 at 4:15 am - Reply

    Doyin! I’ve been a devout DDW subscriber for quite some time now, and I swear that I only ever end up loving you more. A more genuine person I am hard pressed to find. As someone who consistently struggles with depression (the only time I didn’t was the first year Post Partum when my son was born..when most people struggle…go figure!) this rings so absolutely true. It doesn’t matter what successes you have, or how happy you should be. It’s not about not being grateful enough. It’s about letting our “fuckedupedness” to take over and tint the glasses through which we see everything. Keep doin you the best you can!

  13. Sarah C January 29, 2015 at 2:25 am - Reply

    I have complete empathy for those internalized feelings of defeat. “Who are you to be successful, impactful, instigative? You are less than mediocre — you are vapor.” Even when I work up a good bravado and the energy to get things done, I am plagued by insecurity. It’s inspiring to see someone demonstrably successful battle with similar terms. Thanks for sharing on Stigma Fighters!

  14. […] #9 – This may come as a shock to you, but I deal with depression and I have for years. Owning it is what makes me the best dad I can be for my daughters. For any of you going through the same thing, please know that you’re not alone. Read more about it here. […]

  15. EMI March 29, 2015 at 4:16 am - Reply

    “I’m talking about the simply rolling out of bed, smiling, and thinking, “I’m happy” kind of happiness. It’s something that many of you take for granted, but it’s been years since I’ve felt that way consistently.” – It summarizes all for me, a sense of depression. I so long for this simple happiness too.

    Love your DDW blog Doyin!

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