Dad dot info
Free online course for separated parents
Forum - Ask questions. Get answers.
Free online course for separated parents

Step Dads Do Matter

Deanb

Deanb

In today’s society, families take on many different forms, meaning that the role of the father figure also varies from family to family. Yet one thing remains clear, this role is crucially important regardless of the individual structure of the family

There are many step families in the UK, (an estimated 544,000 in 2011) and one in three people are in some way part of a step family – whether it be a step-parent, step-child, adult step-child, step-sibling or step-grandparent.

When a relationship ends, any children tend to stay living with their mum, which means that in around 80% of step-families, the structure is of a natural mother, her offspring and a step dad. That means there are a lot of step dads out there, who are also trying to navigate their way through step dadding!

Evidence has always shown us how important the role of the father is in the lives of their children. Although there has not been as much evidence specifically on step dads collected as yet, what does exist clearly demonstrates that Step Dads do matter, and do have an impact on their step children too. Specifically:

  • Step dads have a powerful impact on children’s self-esteem (Dunn et al, 2004)
  • Early step dad involvement has a significant impact on decreasing emotional behaviour problems among girls in the adolescent age group (Flouri, 2005)
  • The relationship between a Step Dad and their Step Child is more influential than the relationship between a non-resident biological father-child relationship, in children’s adjustment. The longer the relationship between Step Dad and child, the stronger that influence grows. (Hetherington, 1993)

So if you are a Step Dad, be assured that although your role might not always seem straight forward, easy or clear – it is important, and it is worth working on – for the harmony of your family, your relationship with your partner, and crucially the well-being of your children and step children.

Related entries

Top Tips for step dads

Top Tips for step dads

Having a relationship with a partner who already has children is a role which is difficult to prepare for. The role will vary depending on who the individuals are in your step family, how many children there are, how old they are, their previous experiences, and so...

Step dads – is it ok if…?

Step dads – is it ok if…?

Becoming a stepdad can be a confusing time, so we give you the quick low down and reference guide for where to get more support with some of the common questions Is it ok if… we decide to all move together into a new house? Or is this too disruptive for the children?...

Step dads – is it ok if…?

Change and Expectations, what is realistic?

Bringing together two separate families is a process, not an event. It takes time and flexibility on everyone’s behalf to settle into new family relationships. It’s about managing your expectations and keeping the lines of communication open. It’s also about building...

Latest entries

Children’s Mental Health Week- the importance of connection

Children’s Mental Health Week- the importance of connection

This week is Children's Mental Health Week, a campaign which focuses on ways to improve children's mental health. Currently, the statistics regarding youth mental health are alarming; NHS mental health services saw a 39% rise in referrals in the past year. Thankfully,...

What happens when you argue in front of the kids?

What happens when you argue in front of the kids?

It's impossible to tell before having children how stressful life as a parent can be. Burdened with managing finances, work, relationships and the many needs of a child, cracks can begin to show in even the strongest relationship. Sometimes, those cracks spark...

5 Ways Dads Can Encourage Their Toddlers To Walk

5 Ways Dads Can Encourage Their Toddlers To Walk

By Chris at Dadology Watching your baby's first steps is a truly incredible experience and one of many milestones they will hit in their first two years of life. Between 4 and 15 months, you can expect your baby to go from learning how to sit up to strutting their...

Pin It on Pinterest