21st Century Dad
One Dad's Thoughts, Ideas, and Feelings.
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Non-Resident Fathers Can Still Make a Positive Difference

June 30th, 2008 . by 21st Century Dad
Father and Child

Photo: mrhayata

Before fatherhood, I used to look at my friend Dan and think, “oh cool. He only has to see his daughter every other weekend and on Wednesday nights.” After fatherhood, I think, “He only gets to see his daughter…”

Whatever the real numbers are, we see more single parents today. In such arrangements, the father’s role runs the gamut from total deadbeat to being as involved as possible.

Fatherhood is being redefined. Men are balancing traditional expectations and taking a more active role in parenting. This is true, even with non-resident fathers. These men have to make the most of their every-other-weekend and one night a week arrangement.

As a resident father, I enjoy the constant presence of my children, annoying teenage habits nonwithstanding. This affords me quantity and quality, but what about non-resident fathers? They too can offer the same, and some additional benefits.

According to Garret D. Evans and Kate Fogarty, non-resident fathers who are involved in their children’s lives still have a positive impact. These children:

  • tend to get higher grades than those without involved fathers.
  • seem to have better social skills. They can make friends more easily and handle difficult social situations better.
  • tend to have fewer behavioral problems. In fact, even when not living with their children and their children’s mother, fathers who were actively involved with their children kept them from getting involved in problem behaviors as teens
  • have fewer mental health problems as adults (especially true for daughters).

Fathers today recognize the benefits to their children and to themselves. This is still true for the non-resident father. He may even be more acutely aware of it due to the limited time he has with his children. He needs to make the most of every other weekend and one night a week.

Further Reading:

Dads, Be a Hero

Father Involvement After Divorce

Co-Parenting and Father Involvement

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21st Century Dad Featured on Discovering Dad Blog Carnival

May 5th, 2008 . by 21st Century Dad

Venice Carnival: photo by VanNorden

Photo: VanNorden

It’s about time I tapped in to blog carnivals. I just discovered Discovering Dad. I’ve read about them and finally decided to submit one of my articles to the one of my articles to the carnival.

Fellow Entre Card Users, Parenting Squad, Building Camelot, and DadThing are also featured.

Take a look. There are some other great blogs too!

Bad Grades. No Job For You! Melodrama Ensues.

February 29th, 2008 . by 21st Century Dad

melodramaNo matter how sincere you are when you say “he’s a good kid,” they still frustrate you at times. Teens aren’t concerned with making the right choices. They want to make their choices, even if it means doing something to their own detriment. The worst consequences of such choices are far more preferable to them than saying, “Mom. Dad. You were right.”

Au-Teen has been chomping at the bit to get a job. To a teenager, money = freedom. However, we’re not going to allow him to get a job while his grades languish in sub-mediocrity. Indignation is the ineffective weapon he has chosen to fight this. He’s getting totally creamed in this battle and he doesn’t like it.

His long-held belief that any idiot can get a job bagging groceries is being challenged by two people who supposedly know nothing about life as a teenager. If any idiot can get that job, why should he have to earn better grades in school?

As responsible parents, we cannot allow it. No reasonable adult, with or without children, will refute our stance. Why are we at an impasse? We’re not dealing with a reasonable adult here.

Renee and I backed off just a little to gain some ground. In lieu of tutoring or getting extra help at school, he angrily answered the challenge of improving his grades through independent study.

We usually see reruns of Au-Teen’s histrionics. Today, we saw a new episode. He stormed up to his room and proclaimed, “Alright! You win! I’m a nerd now!”

It’s always exhausting when dealing with teenage melodrama. This time, I couldn’t help but laugh.

Some Parenting Blogs Totally Worth Looking At

February 3rd, 2008 . by 21st Century Dad

Since the beginning, I was focused on writing content and everything else related to getting this blog started. I know there has been a recent flurry of pimpin’ the ‘zon, but that’s not the main reason I’m here. It’s about time I started sharing some of the great parenting blogs I’ve found since I started this adventure. I found all of these without the StumbleUpon toolbar. The darn thing doesn’t work!

I highlighted a few of our favorite bloggers over at ReneeAndElliott.com. Some of our friends are a little slow getting on board with Web 2.0. This list here is parent-centric. Long-time readers may recognize that some of these are recent additions to the Blogroll.

Parent Hacks – Asha Dornfest

Parent Hacks

Parent Hacks. I hack my kids. Do you? You should too. Asha has really built a sense of community on her site. She’s got plenty of great hacks of her own to share and readers are encouraged to submit their own hacks. It’s a daily read for me.

Metro Dad – Poppycock from a Cocky Pop

MetroDad is brutally honest and forthright. He doesn’t post daily, but when he does, it’s always entertaining. If you’re offended by the occasional (or frequent) F-bombs, then proceed with caution. I get a little sneak preview of what my little one might be like 3 years from now. I hope he doesn’t mind that I’ve branded him as “The F-Bomb Dad.”

Thingamababy

Thingamababy makes me feel good when I read it. AJ, the writer, takes the high road with product reviews. He doesn’t take kickbacks from affiliate programs and writes extensively on products that he really uses. Occasionally, he’ll highlight cool things he’s seen online, but the true value comes from the real-life use perspective. Hooray for investing in some graphic design for the blog header.

Shooting The Kids

Amy and Chris Frazier bring us Shooting The Kids. They have great tips and tricks for everyone, regardless of what camera you own. This is a topic I just started covering myself. There’s room for both of us in the blogosphere but my kid is cuter. Amy is a fellow Nikon DSLR shooter. Yay!

Rice Daddies and Kimchi Mamas

The Rice Daddies (and the Kimchi Mamas) are helping me reconnect with my Asian heritage. When the Korean population in my house increased by 0.5 people, I took notice. The Little One will want to know about where she came from. The whitewash is starting to wear off a little.

Baby Cheapskate

Being a parent means you’re watching your finances more closely. Baby Cheapskate is a one-stop shop for finding amazing bargains, coupons and deals.

Daddy Types

Can’t mention the Yin of Baby Cheapskate without the Yang of DaddyTypes. DT is like the Gizmodo of parenting. I had no idea you could spend $6000 on a crib.