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Step Up: The Daddy Revolution

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Father-2Historically the work-life juggling act has focused on women and mothers; articles abound that focus on whether women can make a successful career while still being able to bake cookies with the kids. Another flavor of this is the recent focus on whether extended maternity leave impacts a woman’s progress through the ranks at work. At some point, we at Bright Babyhood will jump into the fray as well and present our perspective on the role of women as mothers and as entrepreneurs, scientists, business titans, industry captains, medical professionals, and technology gurus.

For the time being, however, we’d rather focus on fathers. So step up dads, the next few words are for you.

Over the past few decades, there has been a revolution in how men are expected to behave within the household. One of the key pillars of that revolution addresses the role of men as fathers – gone are the days when fathers could hover around children from afar, with just two job requirements: pay the bills and cast the occasional approving or disapproving glance.

Today’s dad is expected to be much, much more. He is expected to be empathetic, caring, nurturing, protective – in short, more ‘involved’ with the kids. And by and large, most dads are willing and able to live up to these expectations. They take on additional responsibilities and engage with their children in a more human way; they feed the kids, change their clothes, bathe the baby, and change dirty diapers.

But many men are still clinging on to a Victorian mindset that is not only hindering them from fully enjoying their children but perhaps, more importantly, harming the child in subtle but very real ways. Let’s take a look at the research.

Children whose fathers are involved:

  1. Perform better on cognitive development tests and have a lower likelihood of delays in cognitive development
  2. Exhibit a greater capability in problem solving as toddlers and have higher IQs by age three
  3. Tend to perform better academically at school
  4. Usually earn more and have greater chances of economic success

In this day and age, the right question isn’t “why should fathers be more involved?” but instead, “why shouldn’t they?.”

In our part of the world, we tend to have very clear and defined roles of women/mothers and men/fathers. And while many of these cultural practices should be preserved, it is time that some antiquated notions were let go – the idea of a father as an aloof lord is definitely one of them. So dads, think of being the jester instead for just one day. 




  • Photograph credit: Copyright (c) <a href=’http://www.123rf.com’>123RF Stock Photos</a>



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Contributed by Bilal

Bilal is one of the founders, and editor-at-large of Bright Babyhood. He is a management consultant,loving husband, father of a rambunctious toddler, and Batman (for real). In between juggling his busy career and running after his son, Bilal likes to read and build his collection of books. His writings can be found at www.BrightBabyhood.com.

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