*Father’s Day has a special meaning for Kevin Frazier, co-host of The Insider. The veteran sports, news and entertainment reporter and host can now see his linage in the same line of work he’s in.
Frazier’s eldest child, Tony Tull, is a reporter at the CW news affiliate in San Diego. Frazier and Tull enjoy a very close relationship, speaking to one another every day.
The two journalists sometime go fishing together, play golf and hang out. They enjoy each other’s company. But the warm and cozy relationship Frazier now has with Tull has not always been that way. In fact, at times, the father-son relationship would come on the brink of wounded exasperation and hurt feelings.
Those emotions would rear its ugly head periodically as Frazier sought to bridge a perceived gap of abandonment and lack of trust between he and his son throughout the middle stages of Tull’s young life. That battle came about as a result of Frazier fathering a child as a teenager. That baby was then put up for adoption, which negated Frazier.
Frazier would go about his life, completing his four-year degree requirements and wrapping up graduate school before launching into his stellar journalism career. But as he embarked on his journalism career path, Frazier felt a yearning to re-connect with his son. More than that, Frazier wanted to be a father to his son.
Against the advice of family and friends, Frazier went searching for Tull. Frazier found him. He re-entered Tull’s life with hopes of expanding their relationship and providing a solid building block of support. The first time they met was awkward, Frazier said.
“We just kept looking at each other,” said Frazier. “It was the weirdest thing to keep looking at each other.
This is where things get complicated for both Frazier and Tull. The bonding experience for the two at times becomes more burdensome than it is a blessing.
Arguments become a fabric of the father-son relationship’s growth process as Frazier tried to steer Tull in a direction that was different from his adoptive family. There were times that Frazier felt like washing his hands of trying to make the awkward situation turn into something good between he and Tull.
I’ve never been a parent, and all of a sudden, I have a semi-adult living with me,” Frazier said. “We had full-on, screaming, drag-on arguments. There were times where I felt we just can’t exist together. We had tough moments. But that’s part of the growing process. We had rough moments. It’s hard. There were a lot of hard days. There are a lot of tough times when you throw up your arms and say, I’m just going to walk away from this.’”
But instead of turning his head and walking away, Frazier dug deep and fought for the relationship he wanted with Tull. Time, encouragement and showering Tull with a lot of love would eventually provide the healing balm for father and son.
“They will challenge you,” Frazier said. “You just have to keep the faith and rub your hands a couple of times and walk away. Then you have to figure out what you can do to put them in a winning position.”
As Tull dabbled with uncertainty as a young adult, Frazier pointed him towards education as an inroad to his future. Tull decided to follow his dad’s path of success and chose to study to become a professional journalist.
Frazier, who is married and has two other children, said part of fatherhood is helping to see your children chase their own dreams and ambitions. Even though Tull is traveling the same professional path he’s on, Frazier is even more ecstatic that his son is listening to the beat of his own drummer.
“I’m so happy for him,” Frazier said. “I want my child to be happy and be successful. I want my child to find the things that sparks him. To see how hard he works, and to see how enthused he is, to see how hard he goes in … I’m like, ‘You are so lucky to find something you have a passion for.’ That’s all I care about. I just want him to find the passion.”