Sunday, June 21, 2009
Today is father's day and much has been written by people on the responsibilities of the father. President Obama of U.S.A. says that any fool can become a father but being a real father means owning up responsibilities and "being there". I agree with him. A father's role in the child's development is significant. And it is more than just giving time to the child by being present when the child is growing up.
A father is a role model too. The way he behaves, acts and reacts, carries himself, interacts with others etc. are all watched by the child and imitated in many ways. The child is consciously and sub-consciously watching the father's actions and learning from it. If the father is calm and cool, so the child shall be. If the father is temperamental, the child thinks that this is normal behaviour and picks up cues from him. In rare cases, the child may reject negative behaviour and behave in a positive manner.
He gives a sense of security to the child in more ways than one. The child with a father to fall back on is a more confident and balanced child. The child grows up with a comfort that the father will protect and support the child at all times. The child also behaves with responsibility if there is a fear of retribution from a disciplinarian father.
In my view, the most important role of the father, besides being there, giving love and showing commitment and responsibility, is to inculcate values into the child. He is the first teacher to the child, after the mother, who gives the child the sense of values. He is the one who encourages good behaviour and prevents bad behaviour from becoming a habit. He constantly demonstrates to the child how to live life and how to face situations that life throws at us. He is ever watchful of the child and her progress. He is the one who shapes the child into becoming a useful and mature adult by giving her the values system that becomes hard coded into the child's DNA.