If you grew up without a father, you may feel like you're behind the eight ball, so to speak. Unfortunately, you're not completely wrong in your way of thinking. Statistics show that children who grow up in a fatherless home are four times more likely to be poor. In fact, about 44 percent of mother-only families are living in poverty. Not only that, but fatherless children are more likely to develop problems with drugs and alcohol as one of the effects of fatherlessness. Luckily, there are some steps you can take to avoid those pitfalls, and overcome the difficulties that come from growing up without a father in your life.
Seek Counseling Early
If you grew up in a mother-only home, and your father was absent – regardless of reason for the absence – the most important thing you can do is seek counseling. Counselors can help you work through the problems associated with growing up fatherless. If you're still in school, talk to your guidance counselor for help. If you're out on your own, contact a counselor in your area. If you're not sure how to find one, talk to your primary care physician. They can put you in contact with a counselor that will help you.
Find Examples to Follow
If you've grown up without a father, you may lack the tools necessary to develop as a person, or to be a parent to your own children. However, there are fathers around you who can provide you with examples you can follow. One way to develop the attributes you might have missed by growing up with an absent father is to find other examples to follow. Watching other fathers interact with their children can help you develop the traits that you need to be successful.
Choose Your Own Path to Success
If you're trying to find a way to connect with your absent father, you may think that following in their footsteps is the way to go, especially where education and career choices are concerned. However, it's important that you find a way to choose your own path to success, even if that means going in the opposite direction. If you're not sure which path you should take, your counselor can help you find your way.
Be a Mentor
If you want to move beyond the stigma of growing up in a fatherless home, help those who are growing up the same way. As someone who grew up with an absent father, you have the ability to reach out and help others. By helping children who are facing the same difficulties, you not only help them, but you also help yourself overcome your own struggles.Share