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The Absent Black Dad Myth

Black Father

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently published new data on the role that American fathers play in parenting their children. Most of the CDC’s previous research on family life — which the agency explores as an important contributor to public health and child development — has focused exclusively on mothers. But the latest data finds that the stereotypical gender imbalance in this area doesn’t hold true, and dads are just as hands-on when it comes to raising their kids. That includes African-American fathers.

In fact, in its coverage of the study, the Los Angeles Times noted that the results “defy stereotypes about Black fatherhood” because the CDC found that Black dads are more involved with their kids on a daily basis than dads from other racial groups. 

In some cases, the differences between Black fathers and White or Latino fathers weren’t statistically significant. Nonetheless, the fact that there’s no dramatic drop-off for African-American fathers is still a surprising revelation for some people.

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