Today’s dads spend more time, provide more care and are more loving toward their kids than ever before, finds national study of 2,194 fathers. There was also a correlation between fathers who exhibit negative aspects of traditional masculinity and fathers who are less involved with their children
The study is published in the Journal of Marriage and Family and used data on 2,194 fathers from a national study on fathers of children ages 2 through 18.
The researchers assessed fathers’ perceptions of negative masculine behaviors by evaluating responses to a variety of statements, such as “It is essential for the child’s well?being that fathers spend time interacting and playing with their children” and “It is difficult for men to express warm and tender affectionate feelings toward children.”
Fathers of older children engaged with their child between once and several times a week and knew a lot about their child’s activities.
Fathers of younger children stated that warm behaviors toward their child are “Very much like me”.
Fathers of older children acted warm toward their child between often and always.
Previous research indicates that many fathers struggle with the balance of adhering to masculine norms while still being more emotionally available and nurturing toward their children.
“As current social trends are pushing for men’s increased familial involvement, we see more fathers stepping up to engage more actively in their children’s lives in various ways. As we teach boys and men to be more emotionally aware and cultivate emotional well-being, these men and boys will be able to become better fathers for their children, as they will be able to provide for them not only through financial contributions, but by being emotionally and mentally present for their children and their wellbeing.”