One of the reasons why it is so difficult for fathers to be single parents is because it can be hard to bond with the children they see, at most, 50 percent of the time. With the shuffling back and forth between homes and the countless hours spent away from each other, it is hard enough for fathers to bond with their children, but throw on a gender difference and it may be even harder. Georgia fathers who are raising daughters with a spouse may find it difficult to relate to their daughters, so it may be even more difficult for single fathers.

Fortunately for fathers in Georgia, a new study shows that playing sports with a daughter helps her to get closer to her father. In a recent issue of the Journal of Human Communication, a study found that for both fathers and daughters, the most-cited turning point in their relationships was engaging in sports. Whether it was tossing a ball around or coaching a daughter’s sports team, fathers who played sports with their daughters often had good relationships with their daughters.

For fathers who may be headed toward divorce, having a strong relationship with the children will make it much easier for them to get favorable custody awards. Although Georgia is officially neutral when it comes to crafting custody arrangements, some people still have a bias in favor of the mother. What this could mean, then, is that fathers who desperately want to be involved in their children’s lives may be granted such little amounts of parenting time that it may be nigh impossible to bond with their children, regardless of gender.

Ultimately, it is important that any father who is going through or has gone through a divorce work closely with an experienced child custody lawyer who is a strong proponent of fathers’ rights, otherwise a father may find himself out of luck when it comes to having an equitable parenting schedule.

Source: New York Daily News, “Playing sports together helps dads and daughters bond: study,” Feb. 21, 2013

If you would like to learn more about the issues fathers live with following divorce, please visit our child custody web page.