What Dads Are Good For

2013-06-16 Fathers

According to W. Bradford Wilcox (writing in The Atlantic),”today’s dads tend to make distinctive contributions to their children’s lives.” He gives 4 examples:

  1. The Power of Play – “Fathers typically spend more of their time engaged in vigorous play than do mothers, and play a uniquely physical role in teaching their sons and daughters how to handle their bodies and their emotions on and off the field.”
  2. Encouraging Risk – “In their approach to childrearing, fathers are more likely to encourage their children to take risks, embrace challenges, and be independent, whereas mothers are more likely to focus on their children’s safety and emotional well-being.”
  3. Protecting His Own – “Fathers, by dint of their size, strength, or aggressive public presence, appear to be more successful in keeping predators and bad peer influences away from their sons and daughters.”
  4. Dad’s Discipline – “In surveying the research on gender and parenthood for our book, Palkovitz observes that fathers tend to be firmer with their children, compared to mothers… In their view, mothers and fathers working together as co-parents offer a diverse yet balanced approach to discipline.”

Wilcox then goes on to talk about the particular impacts that fathers can have on their children’s lives. The whole articles is definitely worth a read.

2 thoughts on “What Dads Are Good For”

  1. This article definitely describes the parenting differences in our family. Children change men, and I think God designed families to bring all of us, children, parents, even extended family, to greater holiness. This growth is particularly effective in intact, engaged families. I have really enjoyed watching my husband grow over the past nine years, and we marvel at the differences for both of us in just a decade. Our kids adore him, and I am sad for broken families and families without fathers. I was once defensive about the broken family and even championed the merits of an alternative family situation after having grown up in one, but now I see the tremendous differences on a societal and personal scale. The active presence of a husband and father in the home is irreplaceable.

  2. I think God designed families to bring all of us, children, parents, even extended family, to greater holiness.

    I couldn’t agree with that more, and with your whole comment, too. This is actually an intrinsic element to my views on homosexuality, but I’ll get into that on another post. Probably. Depends on how much I feel willing to get yelled at, I suppose.

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