Guest Contributor: Gabrielle Jackson
In many African cultures, before Western colonization, fathers served as providers and brought legitimacy to the families' legacy. The social status of a family with a present father granted them certain privileges and honors within their community.
Fathers normally did not participate in the early childhood nursing process but became more involved as the child grew older. Today, Black fathers play a similar, but more involved role in our children's lives. Many of them are present participants from birth. Despite the common myth of the absent Black father, Josh Levs’s new book All In, shows that 2.5 million of 4.2 million black fathers — or about 59.5 percent — live with their children. His numbers suggest that Black fathers are not absent but actually just unmarried. Studies show that father involvement increases positive outcomes that reflect in the child's adulthood.
We love and appreciate present Black fathers and it is important that we dismantle the myth of the absent Black father.