The Importance of Dad

As children grow up, they pick up an endless amount of information about the world and about how people treat each other and internalize it into a model that they use for how to treat others in life. Character develops through the acquisition of habits, and habits develop through exposure and repeated ways of dealing with things we come across in life. We enter the world and go through numerous changes as we develop from children into adults. For some men, one of the changes that occurs is the transition from singlehood into parenthood through becoming a father.

While there is a lot of information out there on how important mothers and maternal figures are for healthy development in children, it is easy to look past the growing body of research and literature that demonstrates fathers are just as important to the upbringing and well being of their children. While there are more single parent homes with mothers in the United States than there are with fathers, we cannot discount the vital roles fathers play in societies and in families. While there are always exceptions in human nature and behavior, the general consensus is that when men become aware of the profound and life changing impacts they can have as fathers, they become more mature and develop into responsible, caring figures who perform vital roles in the lives of their children. While it is impossible to predict the outcomes of any ventures into fatherhood, it is clear that the more effort a man puts into becoming a good father to his children, the more likely his children are to grow up happy, healthy, and capable of dealing with the challenges of the world around them.

Fathers play a vital role in the way their children grow up to perceive the world and the people who live in it. It is easy to think that the only children in the home who truly take after their fathers are sons because they share the same gender, but this could not be farther from the truth. In fact, both girls and boys learn a great deal about what it means to be a child and then an adult from watching and interacting with their fathers. If you have daughters and are absent from the home, they might learn that they cannot rely on men to be there for them at important times in their lives, which might lead to them having trouble as adults when it comes to forming meaningful relationships with male figures such as boyfriends, husbands, bosses, subordinates, co-workers, and friends. Conversely, if you are a father who is present in the home and loving and respectful toward your partner, your daughters will learn that men are people who can be trusted to protect and defend and love them no matter what they have or haven’t done, and this kind of security can strengthen a girl throughout her childhood and adulthood.

Similarly, when boys grow up in homes without fathers, they internalize the message that they cannot depend on adult father figures for guidance or love, which makes them more likely to seek out such relationships in negative ways through gangs or other unhealthy relationships. Alternatively, they may become more likely to act out without the restraints of positive male role models in the home, leading them toward lives of crime and reckless indulgence. Conversely, if you are a father who is present in your home and caring toward your partner, your sons will learn that they can rely on you for strength and support, and they will understand the kinds of positive relationships men and women can have, which can serve as a model for how they interact with girlfriends, regular friends, and life partners throughout their adulthood. It is clear that Dads are important, and this is why you need to be present in the lives of your children.