Familial relationships can prove incredibly complicated, and they often change and develop over time. If you are a father who does not have custody, or primary custody, of your child, know that your presence in your son or daughter's life, even if minimal, can have a major impact on overall well-being.
Known as "the Father Effect," the collective benefits of a child having a father in his or her life are substantial. While children who only see their fathers here and there typically still experience the Father Effect to some degree, children who have fully engaged fathers are even more likely to reap the benefits of the time spent together. Research shows that, by you being active in your son or daughter's life, he or she is:
More likely to have healthy relationships
If you play an active role as a father in your son or daughter's life, he or she becomes more likely to find and cultivate healthy, successful relationships of his or her own. In addition to being more likely to find healthy, mutually beneficial relationships, your child is also statistically less likely to engage in risky sex because of your involvement in his or her life.
Less likely to experience psychological or learning issues
Your children are also less likely to experience psychological problems because of your presence in their lives. In addition to being less likely to suffer depression, anxiety and related issues, children who have active fathers tend to have higher IQ scores by age 3 than their peers who do not have engaged fathers.
Less likely to rely on public assistance
Your son or daughter is also less likely to become homeless if you play an active role in his or her life. Additionally, he or she is statistically less likely to have to rely on government assistance, such as welfare or food assistance, as a result of your presence.
In summary, maintaining an active role in your son or daughter's life is critical to his or her progression and development. Even spending short amounts of time with your child can have considerable benefits when compared with not seeing your child at all.