Are you a single dad? Do you know men who are single dads? According to the most recent statistics, at least 24% of single parent households are led by single dads. That is a huge increase from 1960, when only 1% of all families were led by single dads.
Some contributing factors for the increase in single father households are:
- Marked increase in non-marital births main reason for increase in single father households.
- Changes in legal system: more opportunities for fathers to gain at least partial custody of the children.
- Role of fathers has ‘evolved’. Fathers used to be looked at merely as the “breadwinner”, but now fathers are being viewed more as a caregiver for the following reasons:
- Public believes that a father’s role is to provide values in children
- Emotional support
- Income support
Men can be single dads for a variety of reasons, including divorce, separation, death, military deployment of spouse, etc.
It used to be thought that mothers should be the only one who should have the kids and that fathers were unable to raise children themselves. There are millions of children and many more adult children who live or lived in fatherless homes and the statistics show a huge impact on our society. Just one is that about 85% of people in prison lived in fatherless homes. That is staggering to me.
Many times, kids have no connection with their dads at all because of the divorce battle between their parents. Many don’t have a connection because the dad and mom were not married and dad leaves the home and moves on or the mom forced him out. Many dads are not safe people and have been overtaken by drugs/alcohol, so the children cannot be with them at all. Wow! How far we have come from “Father Knows Best”, huh?
Single dads, I would encourage you to do your best to connect with your kids and do what you can to keep your divorce battle away from them. Your kids need you. They need your love, your attention, your time, your advice, your guidance and they need to know that their dad values them. Step up to the plate, Dads. Money is secondary to the important things you can teach them about life.
If you struggle with addictions, find a way to beat them, for the sake of your kids. If you are in a divorce battle or can’t get along with their mom, take the high road and find a way, for the sake of your kids. If your anger is keeping you away, get some help, for the sake of your kids. If you are struggling financially and don’t want to pay one more dollar to support them, look into the eyes of your kids and find a way to work something out, for the sake of your kids. Take the high road, Dads! Whether you had a great father or not, step up to the plate and be the father your kids need and deserve. FOR THE SAKE OF YOUR KIDS!!
Single moms, if you have kept your kids away from their dad or have spoken ill of him, step up to the plate and find a way to put your own hurt aside, for the sake of your kids. If he is safe, allow them to have a relationship with him. Children need a father AND a mother in their lives and they need each for different purposes. They also need to know where they belong so they don’t have to wander in life trying to fill that void.
“Honor your father and your mother…” Matthew 15:4 Dads and moms, become the parents you should be so your kids can obey the Lord and honor you, for the sake of your kids.