Dear Mom: You are NOT the father
I used to have mixed feelings around this time of year. I grew up in a single parent home and I didn’t have an active relationship with my father. Unaware of what actually took place between him and my mother, I still respected him. She worked and tried the best she could with what she had, but couldn’t fulfill the duties a father was meant to do in my life.
According to the 2014 U.S Census Bureau, 80% of 12 million single parent families were headed by women. That’s a very high percentage! Without the father being present in the home, it puts double the responsibility on the mother. And although she plays a larger role, this doesn’t change who she will always be, mom.
Here are three ways fathers are different from mothers:
- Parenting: They ARE the father
- The way fathers parent their children is important for a child’s development. Children learn at an early age how their mother and father interact with them differently. While mothers may be a little more lenient, fathers maintain structure and self-control throughout a child’s life.
- Mothers have a way of speaking from the heart at the child’s level of understanding. Fathers speak to them in a way that forces them to strategize and challenges them mentally, which is an important skill to development.
- Mothers act in love. They will teach a child hope and forgiveness, but fathers enforce rules and teach the consequences of right and wrong.
Unfortunately, there are fathers that aren’t active in their children’s lives. Due to their own choice, by death or the mother’s emotional decision, fathers are just as important. Both parents working together, regardless of relationship status, creates a healthy balance for children.