A father's attention pays off in more education and less delinquent behavior, according to an 11-year study of 584 intact American families.
"Fathers seem to play a real role here, and in some cases it's different than the mothers'," said Kathleen Mullan Harris, sociologist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, at a meeting of the American Sociological Association.
The study tracked children who were 7 to 11 years old when the research began and followed them for 11 years until they were 18 to 22 at the study's end.
Although the children said they participated in activities with their fathers almost as often as with their mothers, differences in the impact of fathers were significant by the end of the study period. Two results were evident: The more the children shared activities with their fathers and the closer their emotional bonds with them, the fewer the problems with juvenile delinquency and the higher the educational level attained by the children.
Emotional bonds with fathers and shared activities with them led to these results irrespective of whether the children were male or female. (Source: USA Today.)