Any man in Indiana who has become a father knows how dramatically this event changes their lives. The world is simply never the same again once a person moves into the role of parent. To think that society for so long tried to keep fathers out of the parenting role to a large degree is a shame but that is changing. Whether married to a child’s mother or not, taking paternity leave when a new baby arrives is important for dads and their new loves.
Research from Cornell University indicates that paternity leave is directly linked to more positive outcomes for children in the long term and a stronger father-child bond. In addition, when more dads take their paternity leave, they may be taking steps forward for gender equality in the workplace as well as at home.
As explained by Parents Magazine, other research has shown that children who have had significant time with their fathers early on develop larger and more advanced vocabularies even by three years of age. Superior cognitive development has also been linked to the involvement of dads in a newborn’s life.
Currently, men are allowed to take the same amount of leave from work as their female counterparts to care for a new child. The 12 weeks guaranteed under the Family and Medical Leave Act are unpaid, however, and this can be a barrier for some men. It might be helpful to consider taking leave in stages rather than in one 12-week period to help manage the financial ramifications of this leave.