Research shows that Dads are an important influence on whether their teenagers become pregnant or cause a pregnancy. In many ways your behavior and the connectedness that you have with your child does influence them in their teen years when it comes to them making a decision whether or not to be sexually active and use contraception.
We know that at around age 13 boys look for a male role model, and if dad is not available, they will look elsewhere. For girls, Dads are as important in adolescence as they were in early childhood. Often as a Dad sees his daughter growing into a young woman, he feels uncomfortable and backs off from doing the things he did with her when she was a little girl. A Dad needs to be the man in his daughter’s life now more than ever. Research shows that when Dads are engaged with their daughters through adolescence, girls will delay the onset of sexual activity.
Take a look at Dads Make a Difference from The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. Watch this video Ball Talk, (Watch the video) through the lens of men who are community leaders, playing basketball and talking about the issue of unplanned pregnancy. You can also learn more about male involvement by going to: http://www.thenationalcampaign.org/males/.
Don’t know how to start the conversation, what to say, or how to connect? Try this! The National Campaign has a web site with lots of information for teens www.StayTeen.org. Get on line, learn together, and share your point of view. Make this a Father’s Day that your kids won’t forget.
** This information has been shared with you by Barb Flis, mother of two and creator of Parent Action for Healthy Kids.