16 Jun FATHERS, BE GOOD TO YOUR DAUGHTERS
“Katy Perry, a pop icon in the United States, said, ‘I don’t need a dude to have children. We are living in the future. I’m not anti-men. I love men. But there is an option if someone doesn’t present himself.’ . . . I’m going to spend the next little while addressing this statement, and say, ‘Katy, if you have a daughter, she will need a man as a father-figure.”
That was Dr. Timothy Rarick’s opening message in his recent presentation on the impact of fathersduring a remarkable UN Side Event at the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). Using a winning combination of research, anecdotal stories, and multi-media, Dr. Rarick proceeded to make a compelling case for why daughters need fathers, and fathers need daughters.
The room was filled to capacity with UN Diplomats and international visitors who laughed, cried, and applauded together during Dr. Rarick’s presentation which crossed all international borders. We are excited to invite you to watch his complete presentation here.
We are also pleased to offer some of Dr. Rarick’s main points in today’s alert below. You can also click here to see some of his engaging video clips illustrating “involved fathers,” at counts 19:10, 23:05, 28:15, and 35:50.
To all fathers everywhere, we thank you for your critical contribution to your children and to the world, and we wish you a Happy Father’s Day!
United Families International, President
Fathers, be Good to Your Daughters
by Timothy Rarick, UN CSW Side-Event Presentation March 21, 2016
David Popenoe of Rutgers University has said, “To be a father, rather than merely to father, means to give a child guidance, instruction, encouragement, care, and love. Fatherhood – the state of being a father – is declining to a remarkable degree because so many fathers no longer live with their biological children.”
I want to show the ripple effect of absentee Dads, that this fatherlessness trend which is not only in the United States, but around the world, is having an impact through societies, countries, cultures, and generations.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 24 million children in America – 1 out of 3 children- now live in biological father-absent homes.
Children growing up in a household where the fathers are not present are at 4 times greater risk of poverty. They are more likely to have behavioral problems, 2 times greater risk of infant mortality, more likely to go to prison, 7 times more likely to become pregnant as a teen, more likely to face abuse and neglect, more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol, 2 times more likely to drop out of high school.
One study of over 2,000 families found that children born to fatherless homes show higher levels of aggressive behavior and experience significantly more caretaker changes than children born to married mothers.
What is Unique about Father-Daughter relationship?
Dr. Linda Nielson, a leading researcher in the father-daughter relationship, stated, “[Moms and dads] don’t always do things the same way. But this doesn’t mean that one parent is inferior to the other. We’re not doing father-daughter relationships any good, and we’re being sexist when we assume that dad’s way’s of parenting are inferior to mom’s because he’s a man.”
Mothers and fathers interact differently with their children, but they’re both important.
Daughters who have a loving, respectful, active relationship with their fathers while they were growing up often have the advantage over other daughters in areas such as:
• not being overly dependent on men
• not abusing drugs or alcohol
• not being imprisoned
• not being raped or sexually abused
• not developing an eating disorder
The research has found over and over again that the foundational relationship for male relationships for girls, is found in the father-daughter relationship. Girls whose fathers are both present and involved in their lives are less likely to become sexually exploited at a young age, more likely to forge healthy relationships with men, more likely to develop a healthier view of intimacy and sexuality.
I spoke with two women who had been “actresses” in the porn industry, who had gotten out of the industry, and who called themselves “overcomers” and “survivors.” One of them told me through tears, that when she danced for men, she was really dancing for them because she wanted to dance for her father when she was a four or five-year-old, but he ignored her; he was cold and work-focused. She didn’t realize until she was older, that she was still trying to get that attention.
There are many ways that men and fathers can be involved with their daughters – whether they are married or divorced, in any country, regardless of their resources. The father can remind them of how pretty they are, and remind them that true beauty is from within and without. He can also help her understand how a man should treat her, and if he doesn’t treat her well he’s not worth her time.
What does Society get from Involved Fathers?
When fathers are more involved in their children’s lives, all of society reaps the benefits of:
• Less dependency on government programs
• Less poverty and crime
• Improved economy
• Less teen mothers
• Better maternal-child health
• More educated, skilled, and emotionally healthy women
We need to educate Dads, and encourage the media to stop portraying fathers as buffoons in TV shows, commercials, and cartoons.
It’s time for Dads to Come Home!
Dr. Rarick raised a call for Dads to come home. Quoting Dr. John Gottman, he said, “too many men have been absent from their families for too long. Government officials, religious leaders, and social activists of all persuasions are calling on men to take more responsibility for raising their children. They are saying that it’s time for dads to come home!”
He also emphasized that even fathers who did not have a good home life when they were young, can change the future for their children. According to Keith Zafren, founder of the Great Dads Project, “when dads who did not have great relationships with their fathers find freedom from pain and resulting issues of the past, the next generation—our children—are strengthened. This is what halts and even reverses the staggering statistics of father absence. This is the path to healing the next generation and our society. As fathers, we must heal our own wounded hearts to fully enjoy and raise our children well.”
Dr. Rarick concluded his presentation by asking, “what does a Daddy get from his girl?” His answer was powerful: “Being her father will teach him what it means to be a real man. It will change his life forever!”
Click here to watch Dr. Timothy Rarick’s entire UN Side-Event presentation on father-daughter relationships at the Commission on the Status of Women, March 21, 2016
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