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The 7 Most Important Things Kids Need From Their Fathers

Lately, I’ve been reading several studies about a father’s impact on his child’s life. This quote from Scientific American Mind accurately sums up the current research:

Kids who have stable and involved dads are better off on nearly every cognitive, social and emotional measure researchers can devise. For instance, high levels of father involvement are associated with children who are more sociable, confident and self-controlled and less likely to act out in school or engage in risky behaviors in adolescence. (Scientific American Mind. Volume 21, Number 2. “Family Guy” by Emily Anthes)

According to the article, fathers were spending a little under 3 hours per week on child care in 1965; by 2000 the figure had reached 6.5 hours. Based on my personal, not scientific observations, I would estimate that dads spend at least twice that amount today.

I’m pleased to see that people are finally starting to realize how much dads really matter. Children need their father’s influence, support, and love. In addition to fulfilling these basic needs, kids need their fathers to provide the following 7 things:

 

  • The 7 Most Important Things Kids Need From Their Fathers 1 of 9
    7 Most Important Things Kids Need From Their Fathers

    Click through to read all 7 items.

  • Time 2 of 9
    dad time

    Time is a valuable commodity. It is a resource that we cannot replenish. There are few better ways for a dad to spend his time than hanging out with his children. Don't try to distinguish between quality and quantity. Any time you dedicate to spending with your children is quality time. Kids need to know that they are a priority in your life.  Show them how valuable they are by giving them the time they crave. Read a book, go fishing, eat dinner together, play a game, listen to their concerns. Make sure you are available when they need you most. You will never regret spending time with your children and they will always treasure those special moments with you.

    Photo via Stock.Xchng

  • Wisdom 3 of 9
    dad-wisdom

    You have plenty of hard earned wisdom to share with your kids. By being open and honest about experiences, you can prevent your children from making the same mistakes that you made. Don't get discouraged if they don't always follow your advice. They will recall your wise words as they mature. They may even pass down your wisdom with their own children.

    Photo via Stock.Xchng

  • Guidance 4 of 9
    dad guidance

    Kids need their dad's guidance to effectively navigate all of the things they will encounter in life. The world is full of harmful influences that threaten to usurp your parental influence. That's why is so important for fathers to instill values, set expectations, and guide their children down the right path. Even when your children go astray and make poor decisions, it is your job to lead them back on track.

    Photo via Stock.Xchng

  • Encouragement 5 of 9
    dad encouragement

    Your words have power. They can affect your child's self-esteem, confidence, and emotional well-being. However, many dads withhold the words that their children need to hear. Be generous with your words and encourage your children as often as possible. Even when they fail, your children want to know that you still believe in them. Hearing his dad say, "I'm proud of you" means so much to a child.

    Photo via Stock.Xchng

  • Protection 6 of 9
    dad protection

    The world can be a scary place and kids need to know that their dad is a source of protection and strength. Defend them against harm and they will learn to trust the safety of your presence. 

    Photo via Stock.Xchng

  • Patience 7 of 9
    dad-trust

    Patience is a virtue that is difficult to master. Our children have a way of testing our patience. Sometimes their behavior causes us to react in a negative manner. As dads, we must learn how to control our emotions and respond to our children with patience and love. If you master this skill, you and your children will reap huge benefits and develop a closer relationship.

    Photo via Stock.Xchng

  • Hugs and Kisses 8 of 9
    dad-hug-kiss

    Kids crave affection from their fathers. Your hugs and kisses comfort them and make them feel secure. When you withhold affection, children feel unloved and neglected. Shower them with affection so they will always know how much you love them.

    Photo via Stock.Xchng

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    Connect with Frederick J. Goodall on his website Mocha Dad or via Twitter. You can also read more of his posts on Babble.

    Related Posts:

    7 Habits of Highly Effective Fathers

    8 Things That Stress out Dads

    5 Nuggets of Advice for New Dads

     

     

     

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