Sunday was Father’s Day and Freedom Beyond Wealth wanted to ask the question what does it mean to be a father in 2016? Below we will list some interesting statistics gathered by the Pew Research Center. (

Men are always taught that they have to “protect and provide” for their family, but what does that really mean? Unfortunately, most people simply equate that to getting money which probably explains why

  • 47% of families relied solely on the father’s income in 1970

compare that to statistics that show that only

  • 28% of households relied on a father’s income in 2015.

Does this mean that today’s fathers have lost work ethic? Or that money is no longer an important factor? Well…not exactly. Although families relying solely on the father’s income went down approximately twenty percent this increase is found in the amount of families that have dual incomes (both parents working)-a trend that has been on the rise.

  • Families with dual incomes in 1970: 49%
  • Families with dual incomes in 2015: 66%

However, with all this working that possibly couldn’t affect a father’s relationship with his child(ren) right?… Wrong!

  • 48% of fathers wish that they could spend more time with their child(ren).

This feeling has taken off in a trend that shows that more father’s are electing to stay-at-home.

  • In 1989, there were 1.1 million (4%) stay-at-home dads.
  • In 2012 this number spiked to 2.0 million (7%) stay-at-home dads.

All of these statistics show a few interesting things. Although many fathers are not fully carrying the financial burden for the family; they have not stopped working by any stretch of the imagination. As the number of women in the workplace continues to increase; does this change the perception that the man is supposed to [monetarily] provide for his wife and child(ren)? With almost half of working fathers desiring to spend more time with their children will we continue to see an increase in father’s choosing to stay-at-home?

So what does it mean to be a father in 2016? Here is one last surprising statistic…despite the changing times only

  • 8% of people believe that a child is better off with a stay-at-home father versus
  • 51% of people believing that a child is better off with a mom that’s at home.
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