Fathers who fail costly for families, economies, but dads can bounce back

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  • SportsFann Bountiful, UT
    May 19, 2012 7:50 p.m.

    This pathetic. I'm sorry if my wife didn't want to be married and uprooted our three children and moved them 2,000 miles away. Dang, I was working 4 jobs (she also worked) and I still was involved in the lives of our children. She felt unfulfilled and needed to "find herself." But somehow I remain blamed for every misstep our children have made and will make. Then an article such as this comes along and adds to the myth of poor fatherhood. This so sad.

  • sashabill Morgan Hill, CA
    May 19, 2012 3:48 p.m.

    I can testify from personal experience that women most certainly DO make up lies about sexual molestation and child abuse. I was fortunate (and blessed) that the courts saw through this and I was able to go on to raise my children singly. Five years later, my ex passed away, so we, in effect, lost her twice.

  • Ricardo Carvalho Provo, UT
    May 18, 2012 10:34 p.m.

    I do think our legal system was formulated in an era where men were less involved in the rearing of their children. As a result, many legal decisions favor women in a way that makes fatherly involvement less feasible. In speaking with a local judge, I also learned that many women today are using abuse claims against their husbands as a tool to escape the social stigma attached with divorce while securing custody of the children. Knowing first hand of such a case where the charges are unfounded, I hope that our legal system will evolve in a way that is both considerate of women (or men) who are legitimately victims of abuse while also protecting innocent victims of such charges.

  • bgl Santa Monica, CA
    May 18, 2012 10:14 p.m.

    Just a suggestion--Photos like this one and the one used for the child pornography article are unnecessary and sort of juvenile. I would expect shots like these out of a high school newspaper, but these look like the editor told his kid to capture the essence of fathers who bail on their kids and told his kid to come up with something silly, but catchy. Either omit them or treat the problems with professional respect.

  • MNLlogit Alpine, UT
    May 18, 2012 9:27 a.m.

    Interesting article but there's something missing. It just doesn't add up. Specifically, there's no mention of the role of women/mothers in contributing to fatherless homes. In fact, there's virtually no mention of women at all here other than as very passive players in the family dynamic who simply need to be "gifted" with a good husband (p.2).

    Don't forget a great many women CHOOSE single parenting--led by celebrity figures such as Sandra Bullock or Halle Berry--and are culturally rewarded for it. We've got a family court system that rewards women who create fatherless homes with cash, prizes and child custody. And we've got government programs that indirectly incentivize single-mother parenting.

    And among divorce "victims", keep in mind women initiate two-thirds of American divorce. In the LDS church (and, by implication, a great many Utahns) the rate of mother-initiated divorce may be even higher as referenced by Thomas Monson, who in April 2011 said, "The vast majority of requests for cancellations of sealings come from women who... could not overcome the problems."

    There's something more going on in fatherless homes than simply "fathers who fail".

    May 18, 2012 8:31 a.m.

    For the young men out there, I caution you against fathering children or marrying in the current hostile climate against biological fathers and men in general. There is no pain greater than being abandoned by a family and losing contact with your children, against your own wishes.

    Add to that child support payments that are designed to plunge you into debt and jail and you have a recipe for a very miserable and unproductive life.

    You can be the best husband and father in the world but if the wife wants to destroy you, she is allowed to do so, with no questions asked.

    That being said, a wife and children are the greatest gift from Heavenly Father. Look into moving to a different country to pursue this path.

    May 18, 2012 8:22 a.m.

    I tried my best to save my marriage. In the end the courts let my ex move 500 miles away with my son. I went from being a 50-50 parent to being a weekend visitor; that is when I could afford it. After I lost my job, I went into debt because of child support. Now I have not seen my son or even spoken to him in seven years. Am I to blame for my absence from my son's life? No. My ex-wife and the courts are to blame.

    When everyone should have been doing there best to keep us together, they were tearing us apart, including the church elders who should have been much more strict on my ex wife. The next article needs to be titled something like this: "Why do women choose to destroy their families."

    May 18, 2012 8:16 a.m.

    Quite frankly this article is disappointing because it does not delve into the reasons "why" fathers are absent. The article repeats what we men already know; that fathers are important to children. The article is following a disturbing trend all across America: that fathers are somehow to blame for being abset.

    Considering that the authorities, the family courts, and the general public take everything the woman says as gospel and pander to her, the woman has all the power in today's society. If the woman has all the power and the father is absent, then the woman probably chose to make the father absent.

    In many cases, the woman has moved away with the children. In other cases, the woman has done her best to keep the children from the father. The laws need to be changed and the women need to be punished. There no needs to me 50-50 custody with no moveaways allowed.

  • JLFuller Boise, ID
    May 17, 2012 3:14 p.m.

    The hard core women's movement has also had a hand in neutering men. Do you recall all the complaints about men we heard especially back in the 1970's, 80's and 90's? Do you recall that it was popular to subject men to derision and complaints about everything men did? Women couldn't be women they had to be men too. Listen to the way women talk about men when they think men are not around to hear.

  • GiuseppeG Murray, Utah
    May 11, 2012 1:27 p.m.

    Hmmm...so what constitutes a "Father who fails." I get the absent or physically abusive. What else, if anything, constitutes a failure and who gets to decide that?

  • raybies Layton, UT
    May 11, 2012 1:22 p.m.

    Men and boys have a tough path in our society. We have endorsed a whole litany of distractions as mainstream now. We tell men that marriage isn't important anymore, that commitment is passe' and that the whole relationship is based solely upon the person with whom you're having sexual relations--and that's the only criteria for whether or not it should be legal. Men who protect women are no longer even permitted to be part of public role models. Sport heroes are free to abuse women and rappers sing about derogatory debasing conquests as though these things will bring happiness. The only valid fathers in our current modern-day families are the ones that aren't biologically related to their children. Under the banner of tolerance we've dismissed all that was once noble and replaced it with praise for the self-victimized and drama-addicted exceptions to the rule.

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    May 11, 2012 12:39 p.m.

    Lois M. Collins,

    Thank you for a WONDERFUL article!!

    I could not appreciate this more. Parental involvement is so very important and truly necessary for children. The evidence is overwhelming that Fathers and Mothers are not just important- but that children really do need them both. Yes, some people don't get both- but the evidence still says that we all NEED both.

    My experience has been that when a man treats mom right, and both are actively involved in their children's growth- that the influence of such parents are an unstoppable force.

    Children deserve the very best we have to give them.

  • Uncle Gadianton Salt Lake City, Utah
    May 11, 2012 12:25 p.m.

    Dear Pack: RE: Divorce is NEVER one sided.

    This one was. I did everything I could to save my marriage. The Ex's story just keeps changing.

  • VIDAR Murray, UT
    May 11, 2012 11:51 a.m.

    Layton, Utah

    Uncle Gadianton, divorce is NEVER one sided just as success in marriage is NEVER one sided.

    RE: Then why is it that only one side is punished in divorce court?

    Joint custody should be the rule instead of the exception.

  • Pack Layton, Utah
    May 11, 2012 11:40 a.m.

    Uncle Gadianton, divorce is NEVER one sided just as success in marriage is NEVER one sided.

  • Uncle Gadianton Salt Lake City, Utah
    May 11, 2012 10:27 a.m.

    What does a Father do if the Mother refuses to allow him to fully interact with his children?

    I had to get divorced, after my ex-wife convinced herself, her family, and her bishop, that I somehow was a threat to her and my child. Later, she admitted that she was wrong, but invented a whole new story that we "HAD" to get divorced, and that everything is better this way.

    It bothers me that no one questioned her false accusations, and no one told her she should do everything in her power to keep the marriage intact. I still have a stigma over my head (even though she admits that she was wrong, she refuses to recant the accusations), and my relationship with my child is mainly by telephone.

    Something is seriously wrong when I have to endure this, and I am not allowed to question her fitness as a mother.

  • Utes Fan Salt Lake City, UT
    May 11, 2012 9:16 a.m.

    Millions of jobs that men do have moved overseas. Millions of immigrants, both legal and illegal, have been hired by cheap-labor seeking employers, displacing Dads and moving them into unemployment and poverty. And, our schools teach in ways that favor girls, thus leaving the boys behind.

    I am saddened but not surprised that Dads nationwide are struggling.

  • luv2organize Gainesville, VA
    May 11, 2012 8:18 a.m.

    My father died when I was a baby and I know I missed out on many many advantages of having a father but I'm glad he was absent through death rather then divorce. I have seen so many friends and otherwise so devastated by their father's lack of love, interest, etc. that I think there are worse things then death.

  • Rob Logan, UT
    May 11, 2012 6:01 a.m.

    So what if the Father never comes around to being a real Father. What does the Mother do so the children have a more normal life?