Effect of Fatherhood on Child Development

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For one to be a good father, one must learn how to be a good father. Not everyone in life has a father of their own, and not everyone has the resources to learn what is right from wrong in the realm of parenting. Being a father cannot be an easy job, as all aspects of childcare are incredibly difficult. But when there is a father in the equation, the quality of life increases in a massive way. Frequently in society a family finds themselves without that fatherly figure and things can get difficult for everyone involved. According to Fatherhood, one in four children are raised with no father in the picture, which is approximately 19,700,000 children, in America. The Department of Education reported that this is the case for 39% of students. The child is the one who is most affected by it, with the lack of a father leaving every aspect of their lives troubled. In Nodaway County, 24% of children live with one parent as well.

This epidemic of forgotten offspring creates issue for the child involved. Those without fathers find themselves in more unfortunate circumstances, and behavioral issues stem from it. Children are more likely to be abused, which leads into a whole world of new problems. They also tend to lean towards crime, alcohol and drugs, and have a higher tendency to fall victim to teen pregnancy. Obesity is also an issue high on the list, with children not learning the discipline they need from their father figure. On top of behavioral issues, poverty comes out of living in a single parent household. According to NPR, children are four times as likely to be poor. This stems from the lack of multiple adults supporting the household. In many cases, the mother is left alone in the midst of her education while the child is still very young, causing her to not be able to finish her schooling and therefore earn less pay than she could have if she had the support from the father. Hand in hand with poverty is a statistical drop in academic success. Less academic success creates a higher dropout rate, including seven out of ten of all high school dropouts, which creates an entire cycle for the future generations.

As if all of the horrible consequences so far haven’t been enough, all of this takes a massive toll on the mother involved. She alone must take care of this child, or possibly children, hopefully being able to support herself along the way. This comes with emotional baggage as well. The fear of if she will be enough, the wonder of why her partner would leave her, the pain that comes with a partner leaving, and the painstaking hours she must work to be able to provide for her family. Surprisingly, this topic was not one that had any sources available, but a mother is just as affected in the moment as her child is. Emotionally for the child, though, they face lifelong abandonment issues, and begin to turn away from adults who they would otherwise be close with. As Dr. Alison Block stated, “Low self-esteem, feelings of unworthiness, striving for perfection, and avoiding conflict can all be the result of abandonment issues.” The overall effect of living in a fatherless household shows itself to be a silent killer in the overall composition of a developing child’s fragile brain. What has skyrocketed over the years through media awareness and a generation with an overall lack of responsibility, society finds the lack of a father in the household not new, but definitely still as horrible as it has always been. In conclusion, the outcomes of a fatherless household seem to leave behind a sense of lingering pain.

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Effect of Fatherhood on Child Development. (2019, Feb 15). Retrieved December 4, 2023 , from

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