Being A Better Dad

When it comes to being a good father, there’s no substitute for on-the-job training. I’m Dr. Bill Maier, for Focus on the Family, sitting in today for Dr. James Dobson.

My son, Joseph, just turned two and a half, and I think I’ve learned more about child psychology in the last couple of years than in all my graduate courses combined. Having a child is like enrolling in your own private crash course in child development. And no matter how much you learn, there’s always more to discover. Let me share with you what I believe are the three most important lessons I’ve learned through the years about being a good dad.

First, if you want your kids to feel secure, love their mom. Kids have an innate way of sensing strife and conflict in their parent’s marriage. And it creates a lot of internal stress and insecurity. We may not see it, but it’s there. The greatest thing a father can do for his children’s budding self-image is to treat their mother with love and respect.

Second, be an exceptional role model. Kids are watching closer than we might think, and how we speak and act will have a marked impact on their future — both for good and bad. Dr. Dobson often says, “If you tie a boy to the right man, he seldom goes wrong.” And I agree.

Third, spend time with your family. You can’t make a difference in your child’s life if you’re spending 60 hours a week at the office. Kids need their fathers, so keep work in perspective, and be there while your children are growing up. No investment will ever pay out as well as the time you spend with your family.

For Dr. James Dobson and Focus on the Family, I'm Dr. Bill Maier.

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