From the big things to the little details, dads matter, and we really do make a difference. Here are just a few of the ways…
DaddiLife always champions the difference that dedicated, involved dads make in the lives of their children. That’s pretty much what we’re here for.
And while it’s always been easy to say that dads really do matter, it’s now increasingly easy to proveit. Study after study shows that having a good dad in their lives helps children enjoy their childhoods and develop into caring, contented, well-rounded adults.
For this month’s DaddiLifeForce, we’re celebrating all the ways you really do make a difference. And with Christmas just around the corner, what better time to put even more of this into practice.
You play rough
Play fights, tickle traps, rough and tumble. When dads get involved play tends to get more physical, and that’s a good thing. According to studies, it helps children learn to regulate their emotions, making them less likely to tantrum and fly off the handle. That’s true for adult life too.
You talk the talk
A recent study by researchers atWashington State University found that dads engage in far less baby talk than mums, and even tend to talk to preschool children in the way they’d talk to anyone else (though maybe not about the football results). That might be a good thing. Mum’s baby talk is soothing: dad’s straight talk helps toddlers identify different types of speech.
You help create strong, ambitious women
A number of studies have shown that dads can have a particular impact on daughters. For example, girls whose fathers do plenty of childcare and household chores grow up into women who aspire to less traditional, more highly paid jobs. So if you want a high flyer for a daughter in future, load the dishwasher.
Of course, there are shortcuts…
Talking of daughters
And when it comes to dads and daughters, that’s not all. Some experts believe that dad might just be the most important relationship in his daughter’s life, at least as far as growing up into a strong, happy, healthy young woman is concerned. A woman with a positive, inspiring dad will know her self worth and won’t sell herself short for anyone.
As author Kristen Houghton writes:
“The praise and guidance girls receive from a strong, positive father stays with them for life.”
Hands-on dads mean happy kids
It doesn’t take anything special to have a big impact. For dads, just being involved and spending plenty of time with your children is enough to bring a host of benefits. A study published in the Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science found that dads who were actively engaged in raising their children had kids who were better at problem solving and less likely to suffer emotional problems like anxiety and social withdrawal.
Your children are just like you
OK, you know that you pass on your genes to your children. But a 2015 study from the University of Carolina found that, genetically speaking, children might be a bit more like their fathers than their mothers. Of course, we inherit equal amounts of DNA from mum and dad, but the study reckons we make more use of the stuff we inherit from dad. So you had better be there for your kids – they’re even more like you than you might have realised.
You keep them honest
There’s plenty of evidence to suggest that the parenting styles of mums and dads complement each other, and that children benefit from both. A dad’s role – for example, to lovingly set boundaries (while also allowing increasing autonomy as children get older) – is a key part of the mix.
How much children benefit from dad’s presence was shown in a 2001 study from Birmingham University, which found that boys from the same social background and with the same issues and challenges were less likely to get into trouble with authority if their fathers maintained a close relationship with them. Quite simply, being close to your children can keep them out of prison.
You spark their imaginations
As we discussed at length in our reading article, dads who read to their children are giving them a very special start in life. In fact, one study even showed that kids get more from dad reading to them than mum.
No matter how early the day started or how long the day seems to last, this right here slows the day down and brings you into the moment. #readingtogether #fatherandson #cantwaitforthismoment thanks @sandra_boynton for writing his favorite bedtime book. The only one that gets read everyday. 📸by @nyayitra
Dads matter in so many ways. What are you going to do to keep it that way?