Mothers receive a lot of credit in our culture, and rightfully so. But sometimes, fathers don’t receive the credit they deserve. Fathers have a tremendous influence on the lives of their children.
Children perform better cognitively and academically if they have fathers who are caring and actively involved with them, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources. Nurturing fathers can be emotionally soothing to children and provide good role models of how people should treat others.
Conversely, if fathers aren’t around for their children, the children could face higher risks. Such children face higher risks of experiencing poverty and may have a greater tendency to abuse drugs or alcohol, says the National Center for Fathering.
In addition, people who have fathers and mothers who struggle with substance abuse or addiction might be more likely to experience substance abuse or addiction themselves. But several factors contribute to those conditions. People have greater likelihoods to addiction and abuse, but they’re not inevitabilities.
There are things that fathers can do to strengthen their relationships with their kids. According to the National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse, some ways fathers and children can interact can include:
- Completing chores and other activities. Children can learn responsibilities and might feel more useful and important by completing chores.
- Reading to children and with them. Fathers who read to their children demonstrate that they value their youngsters’ educations. Fathers can help their children succeed academically.
- Engaging in active, physical play. Controlled roughhousing can teach children physical and emotional control, while active play can promote physical and mental fitness.
- Playing games and participating in hobbies. These activities can help build children’s self-control and patience and show them that their parents enjoy being in their presence.
Being a good father takes time, energy, patience, money, and other resources. But they’re investments that can yield happier, healthier children. Happy Father’s Day!
childwelfare.gov – The Importance of Fathers in the Healthy Development of Children
fathers.com – The Consequences of Fatherlessness
sunshinebehavioralhealth.com – The Hereditary Factors Behind Alcohol Addiction
fatherhood.gov – Tips for Dads: Playing with Children
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