The Other I

November 16, 2011

Another reason for keeping fathers

Filed under: Psychology, Philosophy & Personal Nonsense — theotheri @ 10:15 pm

I have often said throughout my career as a psychologist that children need fathers.  It is not that life without a father is a total loss or that children are inevitably destroyed as a result of being raised by a single mother.

But not having a father is to miss something terribly important.  To deliberately deprive a child of a father as an unnecessary nuisance in the house is like choosing to give the child one eye instead of two.  Or one hand instead of two.

Now research is showing that men need to be fathers just as much as their children need them.  Fatherhood changes men every bit as much as motherhood changes women.

A recent study in America found that young men who became fathers changed significantly.  They smoked less, drank less, even engaged in criminal behavior less than they did in their pre-fatherhood days and also less than their contemporaries who did not become fathers.

But fatherhood is something one must be ready for.  Men becoming fathers in their late twenties or early thirties were much more apt to change their negative high-risk behaviors than men who became fathers at an earlier age.



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