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Defied: "I know my kids can take care of themselves — I won't steal their thunder."
Discussed: "He would do anything to protect his kids."
Conversed: "You have to write in a son for him. It gives him a motive. Men in stories like that will punch out God to save their son."
Fathers obsess over their children to the neglect of what else is their duty, and shelter them into helplessness.
Or his zeal to protect his children scares them, and his wife(if he has one)and end up driving then away.
Alternatively, a genuinely good person of similar age (to the offspring of course) who's romantically interested in his children (most likely the daughter) shies away out of fear of inadvertently provoking his wrath somehow.
A father learns his Aesop and teaches his children to defend themselves, and brings them along to help others.
The Father sees his children in a situation that is Not What It Looks Like, and his first instinct is to protect them... But they explain to him exactly what happened, an while he feels like a massive idiot, no permanent harm was done.