Father’s Day is just another day without a father; at least that is the reality for 28 million American children. These children will never go shopping for a “#1 dad” mug, another tie or an electronic gift because their father is absent from their lives. To these children, their absent father is a mythical figure of a strong, loving and nurturing man. It is heartbreaking that half of African-American children, one out of four Hispanic children, 17 percent of Caucasian and 10 percent of Asian children will grow up never experiencing a father’s love and affection.
So many fathers fail to realize how much influence and power they possess over their children’s lives. This lack of awareness could be partly contributed to the glorification of mothers; nonetheless, the presence of a father in a child’s life is priceless.
Boys look forward to playing sports with their dads, having talks about being a man and the complexity of women. A little girl looks forward to her father talking to her about boys, helping her with car trouble and walking her down the aisle on her wedding day. Without a father figure, a child can easily go a stray.
Fatherless children are more prone to negative influences: drugs, crime, sexual abuse, teen pregnancy, gang affiliations, depression, dropping out of school and poverty.
As Presidential Candidate, Barack Obama said in a 2008 father’s day speech, “We need fathers to realize that responsibility does not end at conception. We need them to realize that what makes you a man is not the ability to have a child – it’s the courage to raise one.”
Happy Father’s day to all the men who are living up to their responsibilities. Thank you for not making this day a fatherless day.