Sunday, June 8, 2014

Every Child Needs a Dad

A little girl marched into her classroom with a beautiful mahogany crayon box made by her father. She set it down on her desk and said proudly, "Daddy made it for me." 

Three days later, when she opened the box, all the crayons were broken.

Who? She never knew, but suspicions ran high that jealousy had overcome a classmate whose Daddy doesn't come home.

Studies show that, in most situations, a father’s presence and involvement with the children from birth is just as important as a mother’s. The father who actively engages with his children is especially helpful to the mental health and adjustment of the children, even into adulthood. Girls without fathers have lower self-esteem and more depression, while boys are more likely to become delinquent. Children from fatherless homes have exceedingly high percentages of homelessness, chemical abuse, suicide, teen pregnancy, incarceration, and dropping out of high school.  

Every child needs a Dad -- a Dad who comes home and gives hugs, who makes funny faces no one else can make, who tells funny stories, who molds Play Dough® frogs and little cherry pies. A Dad who shapes pancakes into bunny faces. A Dad who helps kids play ball and do homework, who cuts rows in the garden so you can plant seeds to grow beans or flowers. A Dad who teaches you to use pliers and screwdrivers and how to cut wire and tie knots. 

Every child needs a Dad -- a Dad who takes you to parks and games and merry-go-rounds and the Fair.  A Dad who holds your hand to keep you safe. A Dad who plucks splinters out for you, who puts up hooks for your coats and things. A Dad who talks with your teacher about you and sees you sing or toot or speak in programs at school and church.

Every child needs a Dad.

A Dad buys you shoes and sometimes a fishing pole or a sled. A Dad shows you how to put a worm on a hook, and he likes the picture you drew for him. Sometimes a Dad makes you pull weeds, or save your money, but you know it's good. A Daddy tells you when you've done wrong, but he tells you when you've done right, too. Sometimes a Dad makes mistakes, but you know he tries to be a good Dad.

Your Dad is strong, but he is also tender and kind, especially to your mom. If you're a boy, you think you would like to be like him someday, and if you're a girl, you think that someday you will marry someone just like him. 

A Dad loves your mom and his heritage and God, and you learn from him. Sometimes they talk about you, and you know they love you and want good things for you. A Dad and mom leave you memories you like and a legacy you can't forget, and you are glad. 

A Dad is there with your mom when you get your diploma and when you leave home for the service or for a job or for college, and they are happy at your wedding, but they cry because it's time to let you go and they love you so much. 

Every child needs a Dad.