More than 20 million children in America live in a home without a father. Millions more children don’t receive the support (emotionally speaking) from a father who is present in the home. It’s been said if “fatherlessness” were a disease, it would be an epidemic and declared a national emergency.

The role of a father in the home is crucial to the development of children where morals, respect, integrity and honor are concerned. However, these qualities are becoming scarcer in society. This should be of much concern to every parent who wants the best for their children.

Studies from the American Academy of Pediatrics have concluded fatherless children have a greater risk of mental and behavior disorders. They go on to say fatherless children, though not all, have a greater risk of lacking a full education, suicide, running away from home, dropping out of high school, being incarcerated in juvenile hall, having substance abuse problems and aggressive behavior.

A man who brings children into this world should give his attention to his children. He is responsible to love, care for and provide for them as any responsible man should. Single fathers should never put a girlfriend before his children who are minors.

Children do not deserve to be pushed aside. Children are innocent and need to know they are loved and cared for by both father and mother. Too many men have abandoned their responsibility to their children just to start a new life with a new lover. This is not fair to the children brought into this world. Fathers need to step up to the plate and stop being selfish and start putting the needs of their children before their own.

The role of a father is much different from a mother. If a father does what he is supposed to do, he will give clear guidance to his children; discipline when necessary; instruct with his words and his example; be the role model he wants his children to grow up to be. To all fathers, especially single dads, it’s no longer about your happiness. Your small children deserve you and your attention to them. They don’t deserve to grow up in a single-parent home where they are forgotten by their father.

Perhaps this may upset some men, but everything said in this piece is the truth. Own up to your responsibility as a father. Your children deserve nothing but the best. Be the best dad to them. God is depending on you to do so.

If you fathers need help, begin by asking guidance from God. If you need counseling on this matter, feel free to reach out to myself by setting up a phone counseling appointment by calling 661-721-0111. You owe it to your kids.

I invite you to follow my Facebook page at

David Vivas Jr. is the pastor at World Harvest International Church in Delano.

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