Dads Survey Results
Results of Dads Survey 2009
Wow! I am so amazed at the results from my Dads Survey (and also so thankful to all the Dads who took the time to fill it in – a huge thank you Guys!)
I just wanted to share the results with you – as I know you will be blown away as well – this world is changing for the better – day by day – one Baby and one Dad at a time!
You know that the Dad’s involvement with his baby has a huge impact on his baby’s life/outcome – particularly those first two years – and now more and more - Dads are realizing how crucial it is that they are involved with their baby – in a loving way – right from the start …. It’s also so important that the new Mum realizes this – but that’s another story!
84.2% of the Respondents (Dads who filled in the survey) – were first time Dads aged between 19 and 45 years old – the majority were 35 – 45 years old, while 31.6% of them were aged 27 – 34 years old.
The majority (81.6%) had been in a relationship with the Mom for 18months or longer.
About half the Dads had some (or a little) experience with caring for a newborn baby.
The next figure interested me: 52.6% felt that they would automatically know how to care for their baby – while 47.4% did not. My interpretation of this is that most guys believe using common sense will get them through – which brings me to the KISS principle – the Keep It Simple Stupid (and don’t take that personally anyone). So stick to” keep it simple” – I don’t believe that God set it up so that most parents wouldn’t be able to do it.
What really impressed me was the response to the question: Would you like to prepare yourself for your baby’s homecoming through reading books etc – and 67.6% said yes , while 29.7% said maybe – which together leaves only 2.7% who said NO. This is fantastic – in the “old days” – it was just the Mom who was reading and attending classes – but new Dads these days want to know what to do, and they’re prepared to put the time into it – because they know how important their involvement is – because they want to give their baby the best.
I’m going to give you the information on what these Dads believe make a Great Dad – I asked them about their own Dad – what they liked and did not like about him, but what blew me away was the response to the question: Would you like to be the same sort of Dad (as your own Dad was). The response was 55.3% said NO, 18.4% said Yes, and 26.3% said Not sure. To me this says that these Guys knew that their Dads had more to give. (I don’t blame anyone for this – Western societies for decades placed very little importance on the Dads contribution – other than financial) – so of course Dads stayed in the background – or got mad and started shouting, and unfortunately, maybe even abusing or neglecting their baby/child. And this is changing, and has changed.
This brings me to the work of world renowned scientist Dr Bruce Lipton, and his book “The Biology of Belief”. After more than 30 years working with stem cells, Dr Lipton is able to prove that our environment shapes us – gives us our beliefs about life. The crucial periods when these beliefs are being formed – is before birth – while we are in utero – as we call it, and those first few years of life. We, as human babies, are learning like sponges, sucking in everything that is going on around us – taking on the beliefs of our main care givers – with no ability to question if what we are learning is true or false. Giving these little humans good nutrition is not enough, even though it is important. How safe and wanted this little baby feels, how he/she is treated or mistreated, and the emotions of the people who are around him constantly – create the baby’s perceptions of life i.e. influence his/her beliefs about life – and will affect his/her life –throughout their life - until that person has gained enough wisdom to question the belief.
Visit http://www.brucelipton.com for more information
Invariably – we go through life reinforcing these false beliefs – and strengthening them – through creating our life experiences that show that belief to be true.
It all comes down to the baby feeling safe and loved in those early months and years. Imagine Science being able to confirm that!!!
When I asked my new Dads: If you had a Dad, what did you like most about him? I felt so touched as I read the replies. I could feel the love these Guys felt for their own Dad, and how they valued time spent with their Dad, how important their Dad was to them, how important the way the Dad behaved towards the child was. Overwhelmingly, the factor that was most important, was the Dad spending time - taking an interest in the child, being around for the child, and being supportive as the child faced different challenges.
Here are some of the responses, and I just want to point out that the first response is from a man who is about to become a father himself:
- “even though my dad and my mum are divorced he still makes the effort to contact me and make time to see me”
- “he was at home and built things for us”
- “just being there”
- Spending time, learning blokey stuff like building things etc
- Gives me advice
- His love and caring
- Spending time with him
- His honesty and love always listening to me and just being fun
- I like the affection he gives me and how he takes good care of me and ensures that everything is alright
- Always being around for me
- He was always supportive, fair and proud
- Always there for me
- His patience, encouragement and support
A number of respondents said that their Dad was fun – so men obviously bring different qualities.
Not all the Survey Respondents had a Dad, and we know from Parenting Author Steve Biddulph what happens to these children:
“Boys with absent fathers are statistically more likely to be violent, get hurt, get into trouble, do poorly at school and be members of teenage gangs. Fatherless daughters are more likely to have low self-esteem, to have sex before they really want to, get pregnant, be assaulted and not continue their schooling.”
Which brings me to the survey question: What did you like least about him? (your Dad)
- 17.8% said they had fathers who drank too much (alcohol)!!! Dads out there – hear this – I was amazed at this response. We all know how people can change who they are when they’ve had too much to drink – and it seems like it is the children who suffer
- 14.2% said that their Dads weren’t involved, or didn’t talk or interact much, “he didn’t know how to talk about his feelings and that became frustrating”
- Perhaps a really telling response was “he didn’t have much time to spend with us. Too busy providing a living”, “Worked too hard”
- Approximately 14% said that their Dads could be aggressive or unable to control their anger
The responses to what are the two most important things to you about being a Dad, were overwhelmingly about loving and caring:
- Caring for his wife and baby
- Being there as much as possible for mum n baby
- Kind, caring, loving fun and able to stick with discipline
- Someone who is encouraging and loves you
- Loving, caring father who will be there for the kids
- Happy, confident, there for their child
- Someone who puts family first and cares for family
- Giving it 100%+++ trying to do what I think is best for my child, listening, coz every opinion counts, and advising what choices to make in life not telling
- Spends time and makes time with them
- A conscious effort made at parenting. Someone who listens and spends time doing things kids want to do, the simple things.
Acknowledgement of the kids.
- Loving your kids and encouraging them
- Being a role model and showing love
- Loving and caring
- Spending time with child and wife
- Watching my child embrace life knowing that there is always love and support available
- Providing emotionally for the child and ensuring they know how much you care for them
For me, the most telling response was to the question: At what stage do you want to be involved with your baby?
- 92.1% said immediately after birth!!!!!
- 7.9% said when the baby came home (my feeling with regard to this reply is that there are still some professionals and birthing centers who do not treat the New Dad as a very important Participant )
How incredible that 100% of Dads surveyed wanted to be involved with their baby by the time the baby came home. As these Dads take positive action and respond to and spend time with their baby – sing, or talk lovingly to their baby, touch their baby gently and tell their baby how much they love them – these kids are creating a new world where kids have self esteem and respect for themselves and others – what a great impact they will have on their world.
For simple to understand information about the development of your baby’s brain, and how the way you interact affects that development, please visit my website: http://www.dadstheword.com/smile-why.htm
If you would like to give your opinion on what makes a Great Dad you can fill out the survey at:
This article was written by Ros Vroom (Registered Midwife/Neonatal Intensive Care Nurse) For New Parent Help visit http://www.dadstheword.com and http://www.mumstheword.com.au © Ros Vroom 2009