America leads the industrialized world in fatherlessness.
Right now, around 41 percent of children are born to single mothers.
For women under 30, who bear two-thirds of all children, that rate is 53 percent.
Many unmarried women are cohabiting with partners at the outset of their children’s births, but those couplings disintegrate at twice the rate of marriages.
In total, about one-third of all children are raised in father-absent homes. By some estimates, this means more kids are growing up with televisions in their bedroom than with both of their biological parents. Boys are especially affected by this trend. Without positive and consistent male role models, society misses out on much of their constructive potential. It’s no coincidence 70 percent of male inmates did not grow up with both parents, for example.
Even for those with fathers, the average school-age boy spends just half an hour per week in one-on-one conversation with his father, according to David Walsh, founder of Mind Positive Parenting.
“That compares with 44 hours a week in front of a television, video game screen, [and] Internet screen,” he says. “I think that we are neglecting our boys tremendously. The result of that is our boys aren’t spending time with mentors, with elders, who can really show them the path, show them the way of how it is that we’re supposed to behave as healthy men.”