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Navigating Life's Journey Blog

Navigating Life's Journey Blog

Helping others navigate this journey of Life!

A weekly blog from the Family & Consumer Sciences Department

Positive Father Involvement

by Ashley Foster - July 25, 2019

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Broad Benefits for Kids1 Young children with involved fathers display enhanced social skills: • Greater empathy; • Less gender role stereotyping; • More awareness of needs and rights of others; • More generous; • Higher self-esteem; • More self-control and less impulsive. Children who grow up with involved fathers demonstrate important problem solving abilities: • Increased curiosity; • Increased exploration of the world around them; • Less hesitance and fear in new situations; • Greater tolerance for stress and frustration; • More willingness to try new things. Father involvement increases cognitive capacities for young children: • Higher verbal skills; • Higher scores on assessments of cognitive competence; • Daughter’s increased competence in math; • Son’s IQ is related to father’s nurturing."Research has shown that fathers, no matter what their income or cultural background, can play a critical role in their children's education. When fathers are involved, their children learn more, perform better in school, and exhibit healthier behavior. Even when fathers do not share a home with their children, their active involvement can have a lasting and positive impact."

Benefits for Fathers, Men who are involved in their children’s lives accrue a number of personal benefits. Men can learn from their children in a number of different areas, including: • Heightened regulation and expression of emotion; • Expanded ability for caring and nurturance; • New understanding of empathy; • Delayed gratification of own needs; • Expanded sense of self and self confidence; • Increased self-scrutiny; • Better understanding of sexism and its impact upon children; and • Deepened emotions and emotional intensity. Negative behaviors decrease among involved fathers. They tend to have: • Fewer accidental and premature deaths; • Less than average contact with the criminal justice system; • Less substance abuse; • Fewer hospital admissions; • A greater sense of overall well being. Communities benefit from involved fathers. Men who are involved in their children’s lives are more likely to: • Participate in the community; • Serve in civic or community leadership positions; • Attend church more often. Men benefit most from their role as fathers when the following conditions are present: • Critical amount of involvement with children; • Energy to devote to the parenting role; • Commitment and motivation to be a good father; and • A learning environment that supports questioning and reflecting on the parenting time.“The guys who fear becoming fathers don’t understand that fathering is not something perfect men do, but something that perfects men.” -Frank S. Pittman, M.D., Man Enough: Fathers, Sons, and the Search for Masculinity. 1994

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