Illinois, American dads more involved than ever with parenting

by | Jul 12, 2019 | child custody

They’re trying hard and enjoying it. At the same time, many of them feel uncertain regarding their abilities and wish that their self-perceived skill level was higher.

We’re talking dads in today’s family law blog post, specifically fathers who live with their children. Collectively, that demographic comprises a varied and complex mix. Some fathers – admittedly a minority, but steadily growing in numbers – take a dominant custody role following divorce. Others living outside the family home are progressively carving out larger spheres of “at home and with the kids” time.

Researchers at the national Pew Research Center have taken a close and empirical look at fatherhood’s changing assumptions and realities. Their findings cast an interesting spotlight on a targeted group that has historically seemed underwhelming and challenged when it comes to retaining a solid home-based presence with their children following a divorce or separation.

Centrally, this is what vetted evidence is showing: American fathers are making strong efforts to be around for their kids, and to an unprecedented degree. Statistics relevant to the number of stay-home dads have ticked sharply upward in recent years.

Pew scholars point to a key – and, to many people, likely unsurprising — takeaway emerging from their findings, namely, that “dads see parenting as central to their identity.”

And yet while fathers assume caregiving duties in progressively higher numbers, legions of them are apparently unsure whether they’re doing the job in an optimal way. More than 60% of PEW survey respondents stress uncertainty that they are performing child-raising duties adequately.

This much is clear: More of them than ever before are making best efforts to do so.