In our society, it's a given that the mother is supposed to have her child joint at the hip with her and she's supposed to take care of the child most of the time. But that isn't how it should be right? Taking care of a child is both the parents' job. And it doesn't just end there. One must also know how to engage with the child and how to devote time to the child on both workdays and weekends.
A new study has found that fathers who spend a lot of time with their child and help out with childcare-related tasks on holidays develop a strong relationship with their children. The study was also able to find that caregiving, playing and the time spent with a child were all important factors in developing a close bond with the child.
“Fathers who make the choice to devote their time on non-workdays to engaging with their children directly seem to be developing the best relationships,” said Geoffrey Brown, Assistant Professor in the University of Georgia in the US. “And on those non-workdays, pursuing activities that are child-centered, or fun for the child, seems to be the best predictor of a good father-child relationship,” Brown said.
For the study, the researchers surveyed around 80 father-child pairs while the children were about 3 years old. These pairs were then observed and accordingly interviews were conducted to see what results could be found. It was determined that fathers who spent time with their children on non-work days developed strong bonds with their children. But parents who also spent time doing childcare activities on the weekends along with the weekdays developed an even stronger bond with their kids.
The researchers also said that this might be due to the fact that children start to develop an emotional bond early on so that is the most appropriate time for parents to ensure that they do all the right things for their kids. That is the time when a father can help the relationship between him and his child develop. “Ultimately, fathers who engage in a variety of parenting behaviours and adjust their parenting to suit the demands and circumstances of each individual day are probably most likely to develop secure relationships with their children,” said Brown.