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Statistics About the Importance of a Father

In the 1960’s, 9% of children in the US were raised in a home without their father. Today, that number is 34% (1). The diminished role that fathers play in the family leaves children to pay the price. According to the US Census Bureau, when a father is not present in the home, children are more likely to have behavioral problems, more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol, more likely to drop out of school, and more likely to go to prison (2).

  • 85% of all children who show behavior disorders come from fatherless homes – 20 times the national average. (3)

  • 90% of all homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes – 32 times the national average. (4)

  • Children who live in a fatherless home are 279% more likely to deal drugs or carry firearms for offensive purposes compared to children who live with their fathers. (5)

  • 71% of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes – 9 times the national average. (6)

  • 85% of all youths in prison come from fatherless homes – 20 times the average. (7)

  • 63% of youth suicides are from fatherless homes – 5 times the national average. (8)

Even in households where fathers are present, today there are more distractions stealing a fathers’ attention away from his children than there ever have been before: work emails, text messages, social media accounts, online articles, internet videos, and television, just to name a few. Just because a father is physically present in the home, that does not mean that he is always emotionally present as well.

Your role as a father is not optional. It is vital. Fathers are essential, irreplaceable, and indispensable.

This is not a damnation for the fatherless. A good male role model does not have to be a biological father. A father-figure, such as a stepfather, grandfather, older brother, or even a family friend can work just as well - as long as that man performs the paternal functions of a father.

Every boy needs a good man to look up to.

Do you have a son or grandson about to turn thirteen? Are you looking to do something memorable for this birthday, to mark his entrance into manhood in a special way? Check out our new book Milestone to Manhood on Amazon here.



U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, “Living Arrangements of Children

under 18 Years/1 and Marital Status of Parents by Age, Sex, Race, and Hispanic

Origin/2 and Selected Characteristics of the Child for all Children 2010.” Table C3.

Internet Release Date November, 2010.


3. Center for Disease Control



6. National Principals Association Report


8. U.S. Dept. Of Health/Census


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