RAISING HELL: SHANE DORIAN ON FATHERHOOD (The Surftime Interview)
SURFTIME: What is the most frightening thing about having a child for whom you have been responsible for him being obsessed with surfing?
SHANE DORIAN: Honestly, now that my kid is becoming pretty good at surfing, its naturally getting more serious. He likes to compete in contests and all that as well. I hope he doesn’t lose his love for surfing. That is my biggest fear. Surfing is so important in life, just the simple act of riding waves with your friends, it’s good for our health, good for our sanity and good for the soul. I just want him to remember why he fell in love with surfing and not let it get too serious.
What traits in your surfing obsession are you hoping your child does not inherit?
I really liked to scare the shit out of myself by surfing really big waves. I felt like I had something to prove. I am hoping my son Jackson does not follow that path. He has a totally different personality from me so I am not really worried about that. I don’t think surfing Jaws is in his future but you never know.
You know what it takes to achieve the professional surfing dream. Does your child?
He thinks he does. He thinks it takes a lot of time in the water and lots of discipline. It is definitely his current dream.
Having passed your DNA onto this new vessel of life, do you feel as if you are going to live forever?
No, definitely not. It is fun to be so involved with my kids and to experience things seeing it through their eyes. But they are who they are, living their own lives. I am just trying to give them the tools they need to learn to be stoked on being who they really are and making the most out of our time here.
Do you think surfing provides a place of happiness in life for your child? Or just a place of happiness he can visit?
No doubt. That is one thing we definitely have in common. He does not like to listen to any directions and he likes to be creative and have total control. Out in the water no one tells him what to do and he can surf exactly the way he wants, that is the true beauty of the surfing experience.
In the surf, what is your child’s superpower?
He is very little so he’s a fast little bugger.
What is yours?
I have never lost my love for it.
Name a powerful personal philosophy that you feel your child, independent from your influence, has formed so far through surfing?
He loves his independence. He already knows that surfing has given him so much, from meeting friends around the world, to the opportunity to be creative on a daily basis.
When great men have children, history shows those children often grow up obsessed with equaling or surpassing their Father’s achievements. Do you promote or combat this?
Honestly, navigating fatherhood is very tricky and it takes a ridiculous amount of time and effort. I think no matter how good of a parent you are you can still have a kid who grows up to be an idiot and make terrible choices. I am just doing the best I can at being a dad and enjoying my time with my kids, trying to make the very most of these years. I don’t spend much time worrying about what they will achieve. I just want them to find out who they really are and be happy in life.