In the past, “Wait ‘til your father gets home!” was a threat to a misbehaving child. The child was supposed to worry about facing serious punishment when the father returned from work. This adage is no longer effective for a variety of reasons.
- Threats do not represent current parenting theory. They may work in the short run but are likely to backfire in the long run.
- Parenting roles have changed significantly and many homes have both moms and dads who work.
- Moms can do a fine job of disciplining children.
- “Wait ’til your father gets home!” undermines the dad’s role as a positive influence.
- Some kids simply don’t care. They deem threats as empty.
Certainly, both mothers and fathers are important childrearing influences. However, in this article, the focus will be on fathers.
Children want to make their fathers proud, and an involved father promotes inner growth and strength. Studies have shown that when fathers are affectionate and supportive, it greatly contributes to a child’s cognitive and social development. It also instills an overall sense of well-being and self-confidence. (Pediatric Associates of Franklin)
How daughters experience their father
How often has it been said that girls marry men just like their fathers? What if their father has some undesirable traits–maybe a temper problem or substance abuse problem? Daughter’s future could look bleak unless they break this repetitive cycle. Their odds for a more positive relationship improve, however, when their father is loving, gentle, interested, and attentive. Warmth, acceptance, and communication go a long way to enhance a daughter’s self-concept.
How sons experience their father
Sons look to their father as a role model for guidance, social skills, courage, and confidence. They seek their father’s approval and often imitate him. Sons are thereby influenced by their father’s behavior and character, which teaches sons rules to live by and how to survive in the world. Similar to daughters, sons also crave attention, affection, and nurturance from their fathers.
Fathers impact relationships
Good fathers teach their sons how to be respectful to women, beginning with their mother, and teach daughters what to look for in a partner. Children observe how fathers interact with others, cope with disappointments, and respond during confrontations. “Friends, lovers, and spouses will all be chosen based on how the child perceived the meaning of the relationship with his or her father. The patterns a father sets in the relationships with his children will dictate how his children relate with others.” (Pediatric Associates of Franklin)
Qualities of a good father
Following are qualities that a good father strives for:
- Conveys unconditional positive regard
- Takes an active role in parenting
- Leads by example as he personifies honesty, integrity, and dignity
- Allows his children to make mistakes
- Implements appropriate consequences in loving ways
- Admits his own mistakes and apologizes
- Is playful with his children
- Is involved in his children’s lives through thick and thin
- Models a positive work ethic
- Demonstrates affection, compassion and nurturance
- Practices being a good listener
- Treats their mother with dignity
- Balances work and family time
- Limits his and their time on technology
- Encourages his children to develop their own interests
Quality of a GREAT father
A great father will give his children TLC every day!