Fathers for Life
Fatherlessness, the lack of natural fathers in children's lives
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since June 19, 2001


Consequences of father absence: It's Official, the experiment has failed. For the best part of thirty years we have been conducting a vast experiment with the family, and now the results are in...Full Story

Does a child have the right to have its father in its life and to bond with him?...Full Story

  • The divorce industry and fatherlessness
  • Father Absence and the Welfare of Children, By Sara McLanahan

    Quoted from the conclusion of the discussion paper:

    Growing up with a single parent harms children for three primary reasons: A disrupted family usually has fewer financial resources to devote to children's upbringing and education, less time and energy to nurture and supervise children, and reduced access to community resources that can supplement and support parents' efforts. Fortunately, none of these factors are beyond the control of parents and society. Thus, to the extent that parents and government can address these risk factors, the effect of father absence on children's wellbeing could be significantly softened....

    Note by Fathers for Life: Although the discussion paper presents a fairly good analysis of the consequences of father absence, the primary solution seen by Sara McLanahan for addressing the consequences of father absence is to bring about more and stronger child support enforcement.  That is in addition to ensuring more secure financial circumstances (out of tax revenues) for single-mother families.
       Not once does the discussion paper mention, let alone critique, the deplorable drive to systematically destroy the traditional nuclear family and to eliminate the presence of fathers in children's lives.

  • Fathers are being blotted out of the "traditional" family model

The fatherless society is the title of the cover story of the November 17, 1997 issue of Der Spiegel, a widely-read German newsweekly in the style of Time Magazine.  The article depicts social devastation and calamities resulting from the gender wars that we have all become only too familiar with. ...Full Story

....Virtually every major social pathology has been linked to fatherlessness: violent crime, drug and alcohol abuse, truancy, teen pregnancy, suicide—all correlate more strongly to fatherlessness than to any other single factor. The majority of prisoners, juvenile detention inmates, high school dropouts, pregnant teenagers, adolescent murderers, and rapists all come from fatherless homes. The connection is so strong that controlling for fatherlessness erases the relationships between race and crime and between low income and crime....Full Story

...Suppose you were not able to hike and otherwise share precious moments with your son because the mother, the courts and the law prevented it? Would Bly be enough then? Is the power of inner work an adequate substitute for liberty? ....Robert Bly, bang the drums and write a poem for fathers...Full Story

A Prayer for Children and Families....Full Story

A few excerpts from Maggie Gallagher's book, The Abolition of Marriage: How We Destroy Lasting Love:
   Maggie Gallagher explains that fatherlessness is the source of the increases in many of our social pathologies.  She also provides a few proposals for strengthening and reviving the institution of the traditional nuclear family.  However, she indicates that none of them are likely to see the light of day unless married people become a powerful lobbying group.  ...Full Story

Maggie Gallagher participated in the production of the study report: [US] Taxpayer Costs of Divorce and Unwed Childbearing: at least $112 billion a year (2008, Institute for American Values; Georgia Family Council; Institute for Marriage and Public Policy, and Families Northwest)

By David Popenoe
Reader’s Digest (Canada) November 1997, page 117

What a man contributes to child rearing may surprise you

THE DECLINE of fatherhood is one of the most unexpected and extraordinary social trends of our time. In just three decades — 1960 to 1990 — the number of children living apart from their natural fathers nearly doubled. By the turn of the century almost 50 percent of North American children may be going to sleep each evening without being able to say good night to their dads.
    There was a time in the past when fatherlessness was far more common than it is today, but death was to blame — not divorce, desertion or out-of-wedlock births. Most of today’s fatherless children have fathers who are perfectly capable of shouldering the responsibilities of fatherhood. Who would ever have thought that so many of them would choose to relinquish those responsibilities? ....Full Story

By Stephen Baskerville

Fatherhood is now the rage:  presidential initiatives, federal staff conferences, congressional task forces and resolutions, federal grants, new nonprofit organizations, and media reports now “promote” fatherhood.

Yet the nation’s discovery of fatherhood also has a darker side:  law enforcement initiatives targeting “deadbeat dads,” federal registers monitoring millions of parents, databases and information gathering on American citizens accused of nothing, new cadres of armed, plainclothes police, and endless “crackdowns” on allegedly dissolute parents. Campaigning for president, Al Gore calls for incarcerating more fathers.

What we are seeing today in fact is nothing less than the criminalization of fatherhood:  criminal penalties imposed on citizens who have committed no act but are made outlaws through the actions of others.  This phenomenon proceeds largely from involuntary divorce and is effected by family courts. ....Full Story

Fatherless homes have become the norm in the western world. In Canada, it is still customary to award sole custody to the mothers after a marital break-up, without any regard to the "best interest of the child" principle. 

We have seen  an alarming increase in childhood pathologies. Results from a recent study show that childhood obesity, among other things, is a cause for concern. 

What is often ignored is that fathers typically are the ones who engage in physical play and sports with their children.  There is a need to develop a holistic, rather than a piecemeal, approach to children's health. ....[by Eeva Sodhi] Full Story

... However, unless the real causes for fatherlessness are weeded out, there can be little hope of any progress in the efforts to introduce fathers back to their families. The current efforts are nothing more than an attempt to repair a compound fracture with a tiny Band-aid. And we wonder why the breach does not heal....Full Story

Many people are enthused about what the Austrians are doing, and some of what is in the program outline is impressive.  However, there is also considerable reason for concern.  .... Absent universal recognition of the need to eradicate the problem of fatherlessness, there cannot be any or at best only marginal success with the strategy outlined by the Austrian government and interest groups. "Fatherhood Today: Opportunities and Risks in the Process for the Evolution of the Family" – there are risks all right. The risk takers will be men and the risk they are expected to accept is greater than that experienced by playing Russian roulette with every second chamber loaded.
   It is too bad, because although otherwise the opportunities could be great, the rewards for society would be even greater if only there were some respect, enough respect to make heroes out of bums and fathers out of second-class citizens....Full Story

In media interviews, Australian Family Court Chief Justice Justice Alistair Nicholson expressed bigoted and extremely biased opinions about fathers.  Such a man is not part of the solution to the problem, he is the problem!....

... right! An example of a letter sent. ....Full Story

If we truly wish to restore marriage, we must change not males but laws. Yet we are refusing to face this politically unpleasant truth and filling the public payroll with therapists and police.
... If fatherlessness is behind most of today's social ills, the realization that the engine generating fatherless children is not the fathers, but the state, takes on implications few have dared to confront. ...Full Story

By Daniel Amneus, Ph.D.

The Case for Father-Custody is a well-researched and valuable source of information and statistics relating to fatherlessness.  The book is accessible as a an easily navigable PDF file at Fathering Magazine

....Fathers Day took the place of our respect and appreciation of fatherhood that had until that time [in 1966, when Fathers Day was declared in the US to be a day to be celebrated] been thought a necessary part of social life. A whole year of respect for fathers got reduced to a single day each year of celebrating fathers....Full Story

... Though there are always exceptions, the single most powerful predictor of violent behavior among boys and young men is fatherlessness. ...Full Story

... The Internet is awash in men's rights websites, many of which urge males not to marry or have children.  Bookstore shelves are filling up with books that deliver the "Don't marry.  Don't have children" message to young men.  The admonition springs from the assumption that men are victims of what political science professor Stephen Baskerville of Howard University in Washington, D.C., terms "the most massive civil rights abuse of our time." [1]
    Book titles include Lost Fathers: The Politics of Fatherlessness in America and The Father's Emergency Guide to Divorce-Custody Battle.  The latter is billed as a "militant exposé" that goes well beyond the usual allegations of anti-male discrimination in the courts to charge that family courts are operating a profit-making racket in children, at men's expense. ...Full Story

Incredibly, in the face of declining birth rates, escalating divorce rates and epidemic numbers of children who increasingly suffer the consequences of fatherlessness, the federal government of Canada provides $640,000 in funding to "women's" organizations for the express purpose to operate a program that will ferret out, label and eventually prosecute pro-family men, their supporters and their organizations as enemies of feminists?....Full Story

It All Began With Welfare. The marriage initiative ostensibly targets the poor, a group which has a higher concentration of fatherlessness. ...Full Story

... Years from now when the negative effects of this human experiment can no longer be ignored, the lesbians will claim that it was not fatherlessness which caused the problems, but society's homophobic refusal to embrace diversity in family structure.  ...Full Story

New federal divorce and child-protection amendments anger family advocates


[Footnote 8] Under the sponsorship of the Heritage Foundation, Patrick Fagan produced a good number of reports that provide irrefutable evidence of the extensive destructiveness of divorce and fatherlessness with respect to outcomes in children and in single-mother "families"....Full Story

... It would probably not be unreasonable to assume that the same proportions hold true for suicides. Fatherlessness in Native communities is rampant. ...Full Story

... Fatherlessness is a direct result of the Sexual Revolution, men and women walking away from marriage because they value a transient affair, or never marrying ...Full Story

The following is a collections of links to more articles and study reports that focus on father absence or fatherlessness.

That is a fairly weighty collection of facts and opinions regarding fatherlessness.  It is important to note that even the U.K. lately joined the choir singing praise of fatherhood, sort of, but nevertheless welcome after more than eight years of continuous slander, vilification and demonization of fathers.  Here it is, the first pro-father commentary after about ten years in an official party organ in the U.K.:

thisislondon.co.uk: Married parents are best, admits Blairite think tank

That is all nice and good, although it is obvious that the U.K. is a late-comer in the debate on fatherlessness and may need a while longer to catch on to what is going on in that department.

It seems that Maggie Gallagher deserves the last word on what we should be after.

In the early '80s, Becky Peck was one of a new generation of women experimenting with what optimists dub alternative family forms. She chose to use an anonymous sperm donor to create a deliberately fatherless household. Just her and her cuddly babies. Sixteen years later, she tracked down the DNA provider, David Ross. After making sure her motives were not financial (i.e. meeting his kids wouldn't cost him any money), David was thrilled. Instant family -- no diapers to change, no college to pay for. What's not to love?

But why would a woman who chose anonymous sperm donation suddenly decide at that late date to attach a face and a name to the DNA? The kids, of course. In spite of all the love a mother could provide, they still longed for Daddy. Becky never planned on that. Too many women still don't.

The actress Calista Flockhart, Miss Ally McBeal, adopted a baby. She recently confessed to the New York Post, "I want more children. I guess it would be nice to have a husband, too, and if you know where I might find the right one, let me know. But meanwhile, the baby is all I really want."

Maybe so. But what does her baby want, or what will he want a year from now? Children's hearts will keep fracturing until more mothers, especially privileged mothers, recognize that giving their baby everything he needs includes giving him a loving father. That's the old, stubborn idea of marriage, the place where a man and woman pledge themselves in love, not only to each other, but to their future children.

As President Bush said so bravely and truthfully, "a child's greatest source of security today is not only knowing 'my mom loves me' and 'my dad loves me,' but also that Mom and Dad love each other. If we are serious about renewing fatherhood, we must be serious about renewing marriage."

But wait a minute, that means that what the children need comes first, and that mutual love between the two parents, marriage for life, that is, will be a necessary social obligation for parents!  Exactly!!

Children's hearts will keep fracturing until more mothers, especially privileged mothers, recognize that giving their baby everything he needs includes giving him a loving father.


Posted 2004 12 10