Daddy knows best
Dr David Popenoe, author of Life Without Father, is one of a new group of sociologists looking at the impact dad has on a child’s life.
"Fathers are far more than just 'second adults' in the home," he says. "Involved fathers bring positive benefits to their children that no other person is as likely to bring."
Children with involved and caring fathers do better at school, and infants who have regular, playful contact with their dad have higher IQ’s than children who don’t. They are also more patient and deal with stress better.
Yet in the UK men are still being frozen out according to think tank The Fatherhood Institute. Despite 70% of parents saying they would like the dad to stay overnight on maternity wards many hospitals still don’t allow it, and while 86% of dads attend the birth of their children, 45,000 UK men don’t sign the birth certificate – showing they feel removed from the process - and their own babies.
Image:© PHOTODISC / Jupiterimages