Modern fathers have an expanding parental role

Becoming a father represents a significant stage of life for men in Minnesota and around the country. Survey responses collected by the Pew Research Center in 2015 revealed that 57 percent of fathers consider their parental roles to be crucial to their identities, and 54 percent found fatherhood to be continually rewarding.

The attention that men give to their children has increased considerably since earlier generations. In 2015, men performed child care seven hours per week on average, which almost tripled the time that men spent on child care in 1965. Almost half of fathers reported that they wanted to spend more time with their children.

Men with jobs face challenges when trying to split their attention between career and family. Roughly 30 percent of them admitted to feeling rushed all of the time while trying to work and be a parent, and 52 percent of fathers said meeting the demands of work and fatherhood was very or somewhat difficult. Although the men who have a role in their families' lives must grapple with the rewards and challenges of parenthood, many children live without a father in the home.

A man who wants to assert his parental rights and gain access to his child could gain support from an attorney. The terms of a child custody agreement might be worked out with the other parent with assistance from an attorney during negotiations. The attorney could then submit the plan to the court and argue that it is in the best interests of the child.

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