Wednesday Wisdom

January 29, 2020

Celebrating Dads

By Dr Kathy Weston

Celebrating Dads


This week I have been reflecting on the fact that I have never met an unhappy boy who enjoys a close and positive relationship with his father.

Fathers play a unique and powerful role in children’s lives and, as a criminologist, I understand how much of a ‘protective asset’ a loving father can be. Fathers who engage in children’s early years help to minimise their mental distress in later years. Fathers who take part in regular physical activity and play with their sons can help to reduce the risk of delinquency.

In my experience, fathers are undervalued by society, regularly don’t realise their own importance in their children’s lives and can even lack confidence when it comes to the ‘how’ of parenting.

Not all children are lucky enough to have a loving father in their lives, but if you are a father reading this, remember your children need you. They adore you. They want you to spend time with them. They rely on you to show them a model of positive masculinity that will carry them into adulthood.


Have you heard? Temperatures are returning to WARM this week… well warm for January anyway!

We are all likely to be vitamin D deprived at this time of year, so if you are feeling low and worn out by the grey weather, hang on in there (and possibly ask the pharmacist for suitable vitamin D supplements for your family).

Sunlight is coming our way soon. Plan a big family walk. Enjoy being outdoors together. Children of all ages benefit from being outside. Nature calms them, whilst physical activity boosts their emotional resilience. The chats and giggles you have, when together, play an enormous role in helping to cement children’s general wellbeing.


One debate that I have been following on social media this week has centred on whether or not young teens should be allowed alcohol.

I have a lot to say about this topic! Let me just say for now that it is PARENTS, not peers, who are giving children their first drink, around the age of 14 and usually at home.

Again, whether it is access to phones or alcohol, some parents feel that early access is optimal. The evidence doesn’t support this view. It could be useful to consider these issues further and use them as a platform for family discussion.

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