Over the past decade, fatherhood has been all the rage and dads are naturally the talk of pundits on Father’s Day. So let’s say you’re a divorcing dad and you’re having trouble coping.
How can a dad – unemployed or working outside the home – be a good father? Not by fighting for custody or demanding “shared parenting” after divorce or breakup. The best way a dad can be a good father is by providing support to the mother of his children, including both financial and emotional support, “a father’s most important role, and the one common “father factor” in all research that indicates any correlation between father involvement or presence and positive effect on child well-being is: a father who emotionally cares for, financially supports, respects, is involved with, takes some of the work load off of, and generally makes life easier, happier and less stressful for. . . his children’s mother.”
If dad wants to make sure his children thrive he must do whatever he can to ensure that their mother is thriving. Stop fighting for “shared parenting” or sole custody if you are in court. Don’t badmouth their mother. Stop hiring paid mouthpieces that tout the latest psychological theory to show that the children are best off with a dad who had never acted as their primary caregiver. I know this will piss off lots of men but it is the truth.
So dads, the message is clear. If you want your children to grow up to be happy and healthy adults, the best thing you can do for them is to make sure that their mother is comfortable, healthy, and happy. When primary care giving moms thrive, children thrive. And happy children enjoy their fathers more.