The enormous honour of bringing a life into the world can be lost through a ‘take it, or leave it’ approach in some cases, but fathers who rise to the occasion will never regret it…
- Two is better than one. It’s obvious that kids benefit from consistently having invested adults around them. Irrefutable evidence points to the fact that a dad influences and builds a child’s self-confidence and ability to socialise, it results in him or her having a higher IQ, as well as dramatically impacts the child’s future chances of success.
- Go team! According to US clinical psychologist Brett Copeland, ‘Fathers and mothers have unique and complementary roles in the home’. When parents consciously acknowledge this collaborative approach, the balance can foster a sound environment to enhance a child’s chances of being a happy and well-rounded individual. This complementary strategy is highly evident in discipline, where moms might discipline more often, but use reason and appeal to a child’s emotional attachment, while fathers tend to be more confrontational and are more serious about enforcing consequences.
- Build friendships with your kids. Play is an important way for a dad to engage physically, and is a way for kids to learn to regulate their feelings and behaviour, especially when it comes to boys. Play also represents a father’s role in encouraging calculated risk-taking, offering protection through fairness, and instilling discipline with concepts like rules and boundaries. A dad should never be afraid of openly demonstrating his feelings towards his child, as this helps meet one of their primary needs and builds closeness. A dad can teach a girl that she should always expect a man to be gentle and caring, and to respect her. He’s her blueprint for an ideal life partner. A dad sets an example for his son and can demonstrate equality and respect for and between his sons and daughters.
- It’s the little things that count. While a father might be the primary or sole breadwinner in the family, his presence and involvement in life’s minutiae is what really matters to children. Nothing involving his children should be beneath him, whether it’s changing nappies or helping with homework.
- You can be the average hero. The need to be the ‘perfect’ dad along with life’s other pressures can be totally overwhelming, so dads might be pleased to know that research shows that even the most average father’s presence better influences his child’s successful outcome, than an absent one.