Holly Carmichael on the Tragedy of Depriving Kids of Their Dads


Holly Carmichael writes in Town Hall:

A recent news article praised a children’s book for promoting the biological fiction that a child can have “two moms” or “two dads.” The article contained one of the saddest passages I’ve seen in a news story:

[A seven-year-old boy] has been teased for having two mothers. The Mountain View third-grader, who attended Wednesday's reading with mother Shannon, said that some kids have asked whether his father is dead. "I don't even really have a dad," he'll reply. "Nobody's dead."

The loss of a parent—regardless of age or circumstance—is an awful, tragic thing. Even if it were biologically possible, is anyone better off to never have a father? Yes, there are some misguided dads who inflict more harm than good in their children’s lives. But our society suffers if we simply delete fatherhood from life’s equation. More poignantly, the little boy in the article will suffer. He has already suffered.

Despite the pain of absence or loss, the void left by a missing parent serves a valuable purpose: it drives us to seek something we know is missing.