America’s Fatherlessness Epidemic
The problems in our country are more than political. We have to address the root issues and pray for healing.
From The Federalist. Roland Warren, the former head of the National Fatherhood Initiative, when delivering the eulogy for his late father, said about the distant relationship he had with him as a child, “I was a little boy with a hole in my soul in the shape of my dad…”
A recent research brief by Brad Wilcox and his colleagues at the Institute for Family Studies (IFS) on how the lack of an involved father impacts boys verifies the effects of that “dad-shaped” hole on boys.
In the brief, Wilcox reports that the percentage of boys living in homes without a biological father has almost doubled since 1960 – from 17 percent to 32 percent – resulting in an estimated 12 million boys growing up without a biological dad….
Thus, it quickly becomes evident how big that dad-sized hole can be and that hole can have lifelong implications…
For example, Wilcox and his colleagues report that 35 percent of boys with a present biological father obtain a college degree, compared to just 14 percent of boys who do not have a present biological father.
While obtaining a college degree is not the only way to avoid poverty, a certain level of educational attainment is required if one wants to avoid poverty. But, according to the report, many fatherless boys are even struggling to achieve the most minimal level of educational attainment – a high school degree – which allows them to enter equipped for the workforce….
Secondly, our society plays a tragic price. According to the IFS brief, young men who grew up without a biological father are nearly twice as likely to be idle compared to those who grew up with an actively involved dad. In addition, they have significant anger issues which leads to legal problems as fatherless boys are about twice as likely to have spent some time in jail before they reach the age of 30….
While not all dads are perfect, and there are some that are far from perfect, a father in the home still makes a major difference in the development of a boy into a man….
As Wilcox and his colleagues write, “If we wish to revive the fortunes of today’s young men, we must help fathers teach their sons how to prepare better for adulthood, relationships, and marriage … These steps matter, not just for renewing the fortunes of young men, but also for the sake of women for good partners to love, marry, and start families in the future….”
How are you praying for fathers and sons in our nation? Share your thoughts and prayers below.
(Excerpt from The Federalist. Photo Credit: Szilvia Brasso on Unsplash)
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