"The value of a loving father has no price."
Let's dissect this quote a bit. Value is defined as something important, something that has worth. A loving father is someone who gives of himself for the benefit of his children. Fathers make a difference in their children just because they are present. Fathers are essential to a child's emotional development. Children look to their fathers to provide structure and consistency by setting the guidelines and enforcing them. This provides physical and emotional security for the child.
The qualities of a good father include treating the child's mother with respect and dignity, actively listening to the child, modeling positive behavior, acknowledging mistakes, and taking responsibility for the decisions that he makes. Being perfect is not necessary. Being available is necessary. Creating a healthy work life balance is the best example a father can give. Creating an environment that is both nurturing and encouraging can be tough, but it can definitely done. The ability to create safety and set boundaries is a quality necessary to raise productive and grounded children that will grow into productive and grounded adults.
Ultimately, fathers should put their children first. Prioritizing them over all else. Even when the father does not live in the home with the child it is important for the father to be involved and communicate effectively with the mother.
A recent study by the National Clearinghouse on Child Abuse and Neglect noted the following benefits of having a father consistently in a child’s life:
o Better cognitive, language, and social development
o Improved academic achievement
o Stronger sense of self-esteem
o Lower incidents of depression
Children with an involved father benefit from having fewer behavioral issues, greater self-esteem, and fewer incidents of depression. Involved fathers help foster these things by instilling a sense of adventure, embracing the outdoors, and keeping kids safe while helping them push their boundaries.
Son's model after their father and daughter's will measure every man by their father. Self-esteem, self-worth and confidence are instilled by fathers. Fathers who are emotionally and physically unavailable for their children can destroy their feelings of self-worth. According to a study published by OrgScience, children stand a much higher chance of developing a dependency on drugs or alcohol when fathers are unavailable.
So, continuing with the dissecting... no price. The qualities of a good father cannot be measured in money. Good character=no price. Integrity=no price. Honesty=no price. Consistency=no price. Structure=no price. Safety=no price. Respect=no price. Never underestimate the value of a loving father, it will cost your children more than you are willing to pay!
Christine Johnson, LPC, LPC-S