Great myth-buster piece by W. Bradford Wilcox. Men tend to endure discouragement quietly, and the air is full of unchallenged myths that minimize the contribution and value of dads. So check this article out and allow yourself a few "Woo-HOO!" moments. You'll sure have one as Wilcox takes down
Myth # 5. DADS ARE DISPENSABLE
The final myth propagated by journalists in connection with fatherhood these days is the myth of the dispensable father. Often conjured up in glowing profiles of women who have become single mothers by choice, this myth holds that fathers do not play a central role in children’s lives.
This myth fails to take into account the now-vast social scientific literature (discussed above) showing that children typically do better in an intact, married families with their fathers than they do in families headed by single mothers.
It also overlooks the growing body of research indicating that fathers bring distinctive talents to the parenting enterprise. The work of psychologist Ross Parke, for instance, indicates that fathers are more likely than mothers to engage their children in vigorous physical play (e.g., roughhousing), to challenge their children — including their daughters — to embrace life’s challenges, and to be firm disciplinarians.
Not surprisingly, children benefit from being exposed to the distinctive paternal style. Sociologist David Eggebeen has shown, for instance, that teenagers are significantly less likely to suffer from depression and delinquency when they have involved and affectionate fathers, even after controlling for the quality of their relationship with their mother. In his words, “What these analyses clearly show is that mothers and fathers both make vital contributions to adolescent well-being.”