SureBaby Blog

Dads To Blame for Child’s Behavior?

Posted by Alissa Robson

Dads, you’re not getting off the hook! A new study shows that a father’s interaction with an infant three months or younger can have a significant impact on whether a child develops behavioral problems before the age of 1.

The study, conducted on 192 two-parent families, found that “disengaged dad” behaviours often lead to behaviour problems in the children, particularly in young boys. The study’s lead author, Dr. Paul Ramchandani,  believes that infants could pick up on cues from their fathers, and that those who had to work harder to get attention often developed bad behaviors.

The study showed that the behavior issues emerging based on the father’s interactions appeared regardless of the mother’s behavior.

“It emphasizes to me that very early care that children get is important and that fathers are important as well,” Ramchandani said.

The research is still in an early phase and is the first to tie in father influence on the behavior of young children. While a direct link between father interaction and child behavior can’t be conclusively drawn just yet, Ramchandani does hope his research will help shine light on fatherhood involvement and support options.

“There aren’t very many programs for interventions to help fathers,” he said. “It’s important to think about dads.”

What do you think of the research? Do you think dads get off the hook too easily for early infant interaction?

Let us know in the SureBaby comments.

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