DO matter: Why children brought up by BOTH parents are happier
and more successful
By JENNY HOPE - Last updated
at 09:11am on 13th February 2008
Children behave better, learn more and
are better adjusted if their father is involved in their lives,
a major study shows.
Researchers found that a good
relationship between youngsters and fathers had a positive
effect that could last for two decades.
homes, regular contact was also seen to lead to less juvenile
Sarkadi, of Sweden's Uppsala University, where the
research was carried out, said: "Our detailed 20-year review
shows that overall, children reap positive benefits if they have
active and regular engagement with a father figure.
found various studies that showed that children who had
positively involved father figures were less likely to smoke and
get into trouble with the police, achieved better levels of
education and developed good friendships with children of both
"Long-term benefits included women who had better
relationships with partners and a greater sense of mental and
physical well-being at the age of 33 if they had a good
relationship with their father at 16.
"It may seem
obvious that what's worked for centuries is good for individuals
and society, but that's what we found."
She said the
studies showed the value of the father's input as a role model
from babyhood to the teenage years.
published in the latest issue of the journal Acta Paediatrica,
looked at 24 papers published between 1987 and 2007.
smallest study focused on 17 infants and the largest covered
8,441 people ranging from premature babies to 33-year-olds.
As well as examining research from Sweden and Israel,
the Uppsala team looked at large-scale studies in the U.S. and
They found that children who lived with both a
mother and father figure had fewer behavioural problems than
those who lived with their mother only.
problems in boys, and psychological problems in girls, were also
less frequent. Intelligence, reasoning and language were more
advanced in children who had good contact with both parents.
The researchers said it was not clear whether living
with a biological father confers an advantage over living with a
father figure alone.
"Our review backs up the intuitive
assumption that engaged biological fathers or father figures are
good for children, especially when the children are socially or
economically disadvantaged," added Dr Sarkadi.
who lived with both a mother and father figure had less
behavioural problems than those who lived with just their
"However, it is not possible to tell whether
this is because the father figure is more involved or whether
the mother is able to be a better parent if she has more
Norman Wells, of Family and Youth Concern, an
independent charity, said the study showed that fathers were not
an optional extra.
"Fathers and mothers complement each
other and together provide a richness of care within the family
that you can't replicate in any other setting," he added.
Tutkimus on täysin "asiaton" ja oikein huono. Ja
kiihkoileva. Odotan jotain
rakentavaa ja maltillista, kuten sellaista hyvien
asiantuntijoiden tutkimusta, jossa todetaan että isä on lapselle
vain on kaksi äitiä"
-- Tarja Halonen