This paper is aimed at examining the relations between children and their fathers. In particular, it is important to examine the role which fathers can play in child rearing. This issue can be better discussed with the help of the theories developed by Urie Bronfenbrenner and Jean Piaget.
This importance of this question can be better exemplified if one looks at such a problem as lack of fathers’ involvement in parenting. These questions should also be linked to the cultural environment of the United Arab Emirates. These are the main issues that should be examined more closely.
This paper is aimed at examining the relationship between children and their fathers. This topic is of great importance to modern educators who need to understand the factors that underlie the behavior of students and their academic performance. More importantly, the knowledge of this question is vital for parents who should be aware of how their actions shape their children.
In turn, the relationship with fathers can profoundly affect children’s values and worldviews. This topic is of great interest to me because in many cases, psychologists focus on the role of mothers; however, fathers’ parental techniques are not sufficiently examined by researchers. This is why I would like to examine the studies that can throw light on this particular topic.
In my view, this issue is important for explaining the conduct of both children and adolescents. There are several cases which can illustrate the significance of this topic. For example, researchers note that fathers, who struggle with anxiety problems, may not be able to promote their autonomy of children and their socialization (Bögels, Bamelis, & van der Bruggen 2008, p. 533).
On the whole, fathers play an important part in child rearing. In particular, their increased involvement in parenting can lead to several positive outcomes, for example, stronger resistance to peer pressure and improved socialization (Sarkadi, Kristiansson, Oberklaid, & Bremberg, 2008). These are some of the aspects that should be taken into account.
This topic is related primarily to developmental psychology. This science is supposed to explain the forces that shape the changes in the behavior of children, adolescents, or adolescents. In turn, parenting is one of the issues that attract the attention of many psychologists because they want to the way in cognitive skills and moral principles of a person are shaped. I would like to focus on the role which fathers play in child rearing.
Moreover, it is important to examine the effects of fathers’ behavior on the children’ socialization, intellectual development, and ethical choices that they take during adolescence or adulthood.
These are the main aspects that can be identified. They are particularly relevant to the practical tasks of both parents and educators who should make sure that children are safeguarded from various threats such as peer pressure or group thinks (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2012, p. 17).
Overall, it is possible to identify several theories that can be useful for explaining the interactions between fathers and their children. For instance, one can the Ecological Systems Approach introduced by Urie Bronfenbrenner.
According to this model, there are different environmental settings that affect the development of a child. For instance, one can speak about family, school, peers, culture, and global trends (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2012, p. 17). It should be mentioned that parents represent the so-called microsystem or immediate environment of a child (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2012, p. 17).
Moreover, parents are both responsible for teaching a child to evaluate and react to various aspects of the surrounding world. For example, fathers are supposed to show how children should interact with their peers or respond to possible challenges.
Provided that fathers are not involved in this activity, their children may find it more difficult to integrate into society since they may not always understand the norms that govern social relations. This is one of the approaches that can be adopted to explain the importance of fathers in child rearing.
Furthermore, one can rely on the theories developed by Jean Piaget. Much attention should be paid to his model of cognitive development. According to this model, the development of mental processes consists of several phases, such as sensorimotor, pre-operational, or operational stages (Rathus, 2010, p. 176). In turn, the task of parents is to foster a child’s development at each of these stages (Rathus, 2010, p. 176).
Fathers can also take part in this process when they play with their children (Rathus, 2010, p. 176). For instance, they can demonstrate various forms of problem-solving, which is an important cognitive skill. So, Piaget’s approach also indicates that fathers’ involvement is critical for the proper development of children. Admittedly, this theory does not emphasize the specific role of fathers.
Nevertheless, this framework is helpful for demonstrating that parents can significantly contribute to the cognitive development of their children. This is why this framework should be included in this paper.
There are several issues that are closely linked to the topic. For example, one can discuss those situations when fathers cannot live permanently with their children. This situation is particularly typical of families that could have been affected by divorce. One can also mention such a problem as the imprisonment of a father. This is some of the cases that can be singled out.
Researchers note that the lack of fathers’ involvement can adversely influence the emotional and cognitive development of children as well as their ability to establish relations with peers (Castillo, & Sarver, 2012). This is one of the pitfalls that should be avoided. It should be mentioned that in many cases, non-residential fathers reduce their involvement only to financial assistance (Hofferth, Forry, & Peters, 2010, p. 14).
This aspect is certainly important, but it is not sufficient for proper development of a child. For example, children, who do not have to see their fathers regularly are more likely to acquire bad habits such as smoking or even drug abuse. This is another risk that should not be overlooked.
Furthermore, such children may have emotional problems (Torr, 2003, p. 50; Wang, 2008). These examples demonstrate that lack of fathers’ involvement adversely impact children. Unfortunately, many fathers tend to overlook this issue and impair the wellbeing of children and their long-term development. These are some of the major aspects that can be distinguished.
This issue can also be discussed in connection with the cultural context of the United Arab Emirates. One should keep in mind that in this country, the socialization of children is affected by father, mother, and extended family. Moreover, according to Islamic norms, segregation of sexes is a part of children’s education (Epstein, 2008, p. 323).
This argument is particularly relevant if one speaks about girls who are not allowed to interact with non-relative males. In many cases, they can only interact with their fathers. Therefore, provided that fathers are not able to play their parental role properly, their children find it extremely difficult to establish relations with other people. This is one of the details that should not be disregarded.
Additionally, the cultural norms of the UAE imply that fathers should act as the major role models, especially for their sons (Crabtree, 2007). For example, researchers emphasize fathers’ involvement in the religious education of children. Therefore, fathers’ failure to cope with their duties can impair the socialization of children and adolescents.
On the whole, the discussion of these examples has been of great use to me. In particular, I was able to see how fathers can affect the long-term development of children. For example, they can affect their cognitive development and improve their ability to understand social norms.
Furthermore, this discussion has benefited me because I could understand the influence of cultural factors on child rearing. For instance, the cultural norms of the UAE place more emphasis on fathers’ involvement in parenting because, in this country, people attach more importance to the role of men in the community. These are some of the main details that can be identified.
Additionally, this information can affect my parenting strategies. For instance, I will better understand those forces that can impair the development of children. In particular, one can mention peer pressure or adverse influence of mass media. These are the reasons why this project is of great significance to me.
Bögels, S. M., Bamelis, L., & van der Bruggen, C. (2008). Parental rearing as a function of parent’s own, partner’s, and child’s anxiety status: Fathers make the difference. Cognition & Emotion, 22(3), 522-538.
Castillo, J., & Sarver, C. (2012). Nonresident fathers’ social networks: The relationship between social support and father involvement. Personal Relationships, 19(4), 759-774.
Crabtree, S. (2007) Culture, Gender and the Influence of Social Change amongst Emirati Families in the United Arab Emirates. Journal of Comparative Family Studies, 38(4), 575-587.
Epstein, I. (2008). The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Children’s Issues Worldwide: North America and the Caribbean. New York, NY: Greenwood Publishing Group.
Hofferth, S. L., Forry, N. D., & Peters, H. (2010). Child Support, Father-Child Contact, and Preteens’ Involvement with Nonresidential Fathers: Racial/Ethnic Differences. Journal Of Family And Economic Issues, 31(1), 14-32.
Kail, R., & Cavanaugh, J. (2012). Human Development: A Life-Span View. New York, NY: Cengage Learning.
Rathus, S. (2010). Childhood: Voyages in Development: Voyages in Development. New York, NY: Cengage Learning.
Sarkadi, A., Kristiansson, R., Oberklaid, F., & Bremberg, S. (2008). Fathers’ involvement and children’s developmental outcomes: a systematic review of longitudinal studies. Acta Paediatrica, 97(2), 153-158.
Torr, J. (2003). Is There a Father in the House?: A Handbook for Health and Social Care Professionals. New York, NY: Radcliffe Publishing.
Wang, R. (2008). What Makes a Good Dad? Contexts, Measures and Covariates of Paternal Care. New York, NY: ProQuest.