As a man, you may have noticed that the father’s role in raising children is often downplayed. This way of thinking is not beneficial for either children or parents. In fact, evidence continues to show that an involved father plays a vital role in the development of his children.
One area in particular that fathers are found to be helpful is in sexual development. The presence of a masculine parental figure encourages children to develop a healthy attitude towards sex.
How Fathers Affect Their Children
While everyone is different, if you watch many parents, you can usually identify some key differences in the ways in which men and women interact with their kids. Women are more loving and affectionate, while men tend to do more teasing and play-fighting with their children.
It turns out that the type of playing men do with their kids is very important. It allows children to grow up feeling more confident.
As they grow into teenagers, the father’s role becomes even more important. According to a study, teens that have involved fathers tend to engage in less risky sexual behavior, and they report less sexual activity in general.
It’s also important to note that most fathers who find out about their teenage children are having sex didn’t react negatively. In fact, they tend to become more involved in the children’s lives. This is great because kids whose parents react with anger upon finding out about their sex lives tend to engage in even riskier behavior. Contrary to popular belief, men also do not react any differently to learning about the sexual activity of their sons as opposed to their daughters.
How Children Affect Fathers
The effect fathers have on their children isn’t a one-way street. Kids bring about an immense change in their dads. One of the most noticeable physical effects is that having children lowers testosterone.
According to a low testosterone doctor, the low testosterone levels that are observed in fathers is greater when they are involved in activities such as play time, reading, baths and getting ready for bed. What is not known, however, is if engaging in these activities leads to lower testosterone levels, or if lower testosterone levels increase the likelihood that fathers will be willing to engage in these activities.
It’s easy to see, however, that involved fathers are a good thing. Humans need a lot of attention, especially when they are developing. It’s important for them to feel loved and protected in order for them to grow up confidence and prepared to handle the world of adulthood. Make sure you take the time to interact with your children as much as possible. Little moments between you will have a lasting impact on them.
Being a Dad Matters
While mothers sometimes seem to get all the glory, having a loving father is extremely important to the development of children. It allows them to grow up confident and well-adjusted.
It’s important that you take an active role in your kids’ lives. Do not rely on the mother to take care of all of their needs. You are equally important.
Julie Bledsoe is a child development specialist. When she stumbled upon this research, she was surprised to learn children affect their dads just as much as dads affect their children. Both the physical and psychological findings are encouraging.