Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Fatherhood can help change a man's bad habits

Date:
November 8, 2011
Source:
Oregon State University
Summary:
After men become fathers for the first time, they show significant decreases in crime, tobacco and alcohol use, according to a new, 19-year study. Researchers assessed more than 200 at-risk boys annually from the age of 12 to 31, and examined how men's crime, tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana use changed over time. While previous studies showed that marriage can change a man's negative behavior, they had not isolated the additional effects of fatherhood.

After men become fathers for the first time, they show significant decreases in crime, tobacco and alcohol use, according to a new, 19-year study.

Researchers assessed more than 200 at-risk boys annually from the age of 12 to 31, and examined how men's crime, tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana use changed over time. While previous studies showed that marriage can change a man's negative behavior, they had not isolated the additional effects of fatherhood.

"These decreases were in addition to the general tendency of boys to engage less in these types of behaviors as they approach and enter adulthood," said David Kerr, assistant professor of psychology at Oregon State University and lead author of the study. "Controlling for the aging process, fatherhood was an independent factor in predicting decreases in crime, alcohol and tobacco use."

The study was published in the current issue of the Journal of Marriage and Family. Collaborators included the Oregon Social Learning Center in Eugene, Ore., and the University of Houston.

The researchers also found that men who were well into their 20s and early 30s when they became fathers showed greater decreases in crime and alcohol use, compared to those who had their first child in their teens or early 20s. Men who had children at a more developmentally-expected time could have been more able or willing to embrace fatherhood and shed negative lifestyle choices, Kerr said.

"It is hopeful that for both older and younger men, tobacco use tended to decrease following the birth of a first child," Kerr said. "This kind of change could have important health consequences for men and for their families."

The study adds to a body of research pointing to key periods when men from disadvantaged backgrounds may be ripe for intervention, Kerr said.

"This research suggests that fatherhood can be a transformative experience, even for men engaging in high risk behavior," he said. "This presents a unique window of opportunity for intervention, because new fathers might be especially willing and ready to hear a more positive message and make behavioral changes."

Deborah Capaldi, Lee Owen and Katherine Pears with the Oregon Social Learning Center and Margit Wiesner with the University of Houston contributed to the study. The research was supported by awards to the Oregon Social Learning Center from the National Institute on Drug Abuse.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Oregon State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Oregon State University. "Fatherhood can help change a man's bad habits." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 November 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111107161800.htm>.
Oregon State University. (2011, November 8). Fatherhood can help change a man's bad habits. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111107161800.htm
Oregon State University. "Fatherhood can help change a man's bad habits." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111107161800.htm (accessed September 21, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Food Addiction Might Be Caused By PTSD

Food Addiction Might Be Caused By PTSD

Newsy (Sep. 18, 2014) New research shows that women who suffer from PTSD are three times more likely to develop a food addiction. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Corporal punishment in the United States is on the decline, but there is renewed debate over its use after Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was charged with child abuse. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

AP (Sep. 15, 2014) The FDA is considering whether to ban devices used by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Massachusetts, the only place in the country known to use electrical skin shocks as aversive conditioning for aggressive patients. (Sept. 15) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins