Are Fathers Valuable In Our Families? new post on Healthy Relationships 101 blog (see below)

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From: Mary L. Pepper <>
Date: Sat, Apr 7, 2012 at 9:55 AM
Subject: Are Fathers Valuable In Our Families? new post on Healthy Relationships 101 blog (see below)
To: Bill Coffin <>

      Are Fathers Valuable In Our Families?       


Are Fathers Valuable In Our Families?

When I was a young child, my dad often came up to my bedroom, sat on my bed and would read my sisters and I poetry.  My memories of these special times included Edgar Allen Poe’s poem, Annabelle Lee, “It was many and many a year ago, in a kingdom by the sea, that a maiden there lived whom you may know by the name of Anabelle Lee. ” When I became an adult, I asked my dad why he had chosen to read that type of poetry to us.  (Annabelle Lee is a morbid, sad story, not a Disney style or child-like story).   With a joyful face, my dad told me how he loved the rhythm, the cadence, the movement and the flow of the words in those particular poems.  My dad  took the time to be involved in his children’s life.  My 7 siblings and I benefited greatly from having a close relationship with our father.
 Do fathers have value in families? What contributions can they make?  How might they influence the well being of their children?  How might growing up without a dad affect the well being of their children?  And  how is the father’s role in a family being expanded and/or redefined?

Fathers are indispensable if society is to persevere (Popenoe, 1996).  At the Fourth National summit on Fatherhood, the guest speaker, President Bush, stated that raising children requires sacrifice, effort, time and presence. He asserted that children look to their father to provide protection, to provide discipline and care, guidance, and most importantly, unconditional love (2001).   Existing data show that father-child interactions are important for children’s development.  Father’s involvement both at home and at school have been found to be significantly related to children’s school success (Halle, Moore, Greene & LeMenstrel, 1998).  A father’s task is to help raise his children so that they can be constructive members of society.  A father needs to transmit to his children those cultural values they must have to succeed in life.  A noted psychologist, Henry B. Biller, said that the father is extremely important for the child’s intellectual, emotional, and social development.  A father is important for the psychological well being of his children including happiness, life satisfaction, and the absence of psychological distress (Popenoe, 1996).  Data from the Fatherhood Initiative shows conclusively that when fathers are involved in their children’s lives, their children evidence greater self-esteem higher educational achievement, a more secure gender identity, and a greater success in life (Levine, 2000).
  An involved father brings positive benefits to his children that no other person is likely to bring.  A father provides protection, economic support, and a male role model.
A father gives a child guidance, instruction, encouragement, care and love (Popenoe, 1996).  A father’s role is to be a protector and provider for his wife and their children.  .  Fathers also bring discipline and authority especially to raising boys.  A father is a role model for their sons and daughters.  This is done through identification and imitation.  Sons learn how to be a man from their father.  Sons identify and bond with their father.  Sons learn about male responsibility, achievement, about how to be suitably assertive and independent, and how to relate acceptably with the opposite sex  (Popenoe, 1996). Frequent opportunity to observe and imitate an adequate father contributes to the development of the boys overall instrumental and problem solving ability (Parke & Brott, 1999).  Daughters learn from their father how to relate to men, about heterosexual trust, intimacy, and differences.  Daughters learn that they are love-worthy from their dad as well as learning assertiveness, independence, and achievement  (Popenoe, 1996).  Finally, fathers are important in helping children make the difficult transition to the adult world.  Boys require an affirmation that they are “man enough”.  Girls require an affirmation that they are “worthy enough” (Horn, 1999).
     Children develop best when they are provided opportunity to have warm, intimate, continuous, and enduring relationship with both their father and their mother.

 Mothers and fathers have different but complementary parenting styles. They bring different qualities to children.  This is important for optimum childrearing.  In regards to discipline, dads often seem more powerful and firm. Fathers provide an ultimate predictability and consistency. Mothers are more responsive and adjust to the child’s needs and emotions of the moment. Mother’s provide an important flexibility and sympathy in their discipline.  Both dimensions are critical for an efficient, balance, and humane childrearing regime (Popenoe, 1996). In regards to interactions, men seem to stress physical and high energy activities while women stress the social and emotional aspects (Parke & Brott, 1999).   In regards to play, father’s play is more physically stimulating and exciting with a rough and tumble approach (Popenoe, 1996).  T. Berry Brazelton states that most fathers seem to present a more playful, jazzing up approach (Parke & Brott, 1999).  It is the way that children learn self-control (Popenoe, 1996).  A father’s play help children to learn how to express and appropriately manage their emotions and recognize other’s emotional cues (Parke & Brott, 1999).  Through father’s physical play and his caretaking techniques, a child learns competition, challenge, initiative, risk taking and independence. Mother’s play takes place more at the child’s level (Popenoe, 1996).  A mother plays more visual games with more verbal interactions.  In her caretaking role, she stresses the emotional security and personal safety. In regards to moral senses, there are fundamental differences between men and women.  Men stress justice, fairness, and duty.  These traits are based on rules.  Women stress sympathy, care and helping others.  These traits are based on relationships (Popenoe, 1996).  Mothers and fathers parent differently, but both can parent well and make a difference in their children’s lives (Parke & Brott, 1999).    
 Children learn about male and female relationships by seeing how their parents relate to each other.  Children learn about trust, intimacy, and caring between the sexes.  The parents’ relationship provides children a model for marriage (Popenoe, 1996).  If fathers treat mothers with dignity and respect, then it is likely that their sons will grow up to treat women with dignity and respect.  If fathers treat mothers with contempt and cruelty, then it is likely that their sons will, too.  Fathers are also critical for the healthy emotional development of girls.  If girls experience the love, attention, and protection of fathers, then they are likely to resist the temptations of seeking love and attention elsewhere- often through casual sexual relations at a very young age (Horn, 1999). 
  On the other side of the coin is the research of children who are raised without their father.  Generally, children from father absent homes have lower test scores, lower GPA’s, lower school attendance than adolescents from two parent homes (Parke, & Brott, 1999).  Children with absent fathers are subject to higher levels of physical and sexual abuse, neglect and emotional maltreatment.   Fatherless children experience significantly more physical, emotional and behavioral problems than do children growing up in intact families.  Many of these problems continue into their adolescent and adult years generating steeply elevated rates of juvenile delinquency, crime and violence, out of wedlock pregnancies, and substance abuse (Popenoe, 1996).  Prisons are populated primarily by men who were abandoned or rejected by their fathers (Dobson, 2002).  Seventy-two percent of adolescent murderers and sixty percent of America’s rapist grew up in homes without fathers (Parke, & Brott, 1999).  A few years ago, a greeting card company decided to set up a table in a federal prison, inviting any inmate who so desired to send a free card to his mom.  The lines were so long, they had to make another trip to the factory to get more cards.  Due to the success of the event, they decided to do the same thing on Father’s Day, but this time no one came.  Not one prisoner felt the need or had the desire to send a card to his dad.  Many had no idea who their father even was (Dobson, 2002).

     Children in single parent households are disadvantaged by loss of economic resources, too little parental supervision and/or involvement and greater residential mobility (Popenoe, 1996).  Patricia Fry in an article, ‘Fathers in America’, states that fatherless children do learn from their father.  They learn not to trust and they learn to live with the pain of rejection (2001).  Long time affects of absent fathers include the closeness children feel to their father when they become adults.  Only 31 % of adult children of divorced parents felt close to their father.  An overwhelming 77% of adult children whose parents are still married and live together felt close to their father (Parke & Brott, 1999).

     Now, that we know the value of fathers in a family and the flip side of the coin of what happens when the father is absent, what are some of the current roles that some fathers play in their family.   The quality of a father’s involvement is crucial.  Simply being there is not enough; being available and involved is what really counts ( Parke & Brott, 1999).  For those men whom have chosen to stay married and have integrated themselves into the fabric of family life, their role as dad is evolving (Levine, 2000).  As Ken R. Canfield in his book The Heart of a Father states “It takes quantity time to build a relationship of mutual trust, and trust is absolutely necessary for real quality time”.    Some fathers are choosing to be more involved in the primary child care (Popenoe, 1996).  They are walking the walk and talking the talk.  They are creating a balance in their lives between work, marriage, and children.  Because they are involved in their children’s lives, their children evidence greater self-esteem, higher educational achievement, a more secure gender identity, and greater success in life (Levine, 2000). The expanding role for fathers allows them to be more nurturing than in the past, to share in domestic pursuits and the day to day care of their children.  Being an active and an engaged father can be one of the most deeply satisfying and meaningful aspects of his life’s endeavors.  Children give men a perspective on what is really important in life as well as the important sense of interpersonal connectedness across the generations.  Children enhance these virtues in men:  patience, kindness, generosity, compassion and prevents the preoccupation with self (Popenoe, 1996). 
  Society at all levels can promote and encourage men to be active and involved fathers.
Wives can encourage their husband to engage in the daily childcare by relinquishing some of the control they have of that area.  Local agencies can help by giving men the tools they need to know in order to be involved fathers.  They can offer fathering classes that teach men about child development and basic skills needed for child care.  Everyone can benefit greatly from fathers being involved in their families (Parke & Brott, 1999).

The president of the National Fatherhood Initiative, Wade F. Horn asserts that the best home for a child is one where both the mother and the father are happily married, actively and lovingly involved in the life of their child.   Let's strive to give this gift to each and every child!
 Change is still needed in our culture’s attitude about the value and importance of a father in a family.  Fatherhood must be esteemed and promoted and become a valued,
integral part of our society. 

     Amato, P.R., & Rogers, S.J.(1999).  Do attitudes toward divorce affect marital quality?  Journal of Family Issues,20 (1), 69-86.
     Ballard, C. (2002).  Who But God?  The Institute for Responsible Fatherhood and Family Revitalization [On-Line].  Available:
     Blankenhorn, D.(1995).  Fatherless in America:  confronting our most urgent social problem.  New York:  Basic Books.
     Bush, G.W. (2001).  Remarks to the fourth national summit on fatherhood.  Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents, 37(23), 859-862.
     Dobson, J. (2002, March).  The essential father.  Family News, 1-6.
     Halle, T., Moore, K., Greene, A., & LeMenestrel, S. M. (1998).  What policymakers need to know about fathers.  Policy & Practice of Public Human Services, 56(3), 21-35.
     Horn, W. (1999).  No substitute for parents.  Child and Family, 22(3), 57-63.
     Levine, S. (2000).  Father courage – what happens when men put family first.  New York:  Harcourt, Inc.
     Parke, R & Brott, A. (1999).  Throwaway dads:  the myths and barriers that keep men from being the fathers they want to be.  Boston:  Houghton Mifflin Company.
     Popenoe, D. (1996).  Life without father:  compelling new evidence that fatherhood and marriage are indispensable for the good of children and society.  New York:  The Free Press.
     The Fatherhood Project Home Page.  Available:

‎"Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to an all-knowing God."

Live Simply Love Faithfulness

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Date: Fri, Apr 6, 2012 at 2:31 PM
Subject: Live Simply Love Faithfulness


Posted: 06 Apr 2012 05:25 AM PDT


It’s a powerful word that means more than just avoiding the act of being unfaithful. It’s all about where your heart and mind are and whether they are FOR your marriage or against it.

&copy; Liaurinko 2775908 Subscription Monthly L 300x199 FaithfulnessWhen we get married, hardly any of us consider that one day we might not actually feel the same head-over-heels way we did on our wedding day. At that moment, it’s hard to imagine anything but butterflies and rose petals. But as I mentioned yesterday, elation can quickly become frustration and how you deal with that is totally up to you.

You can choose to be faithful to your spouse, your vows and your commitment to the marriage or you can allow a seed of bitterness, resentment or unfaithfulness to be planted in the foundation of your relationship. Ask anyone who’s been party to an affair {whether physical or emotional} and inevitably they will admit it started out with something small—a little flirtation here, a minor sense of dissatisfaction there, a day-dream about Mr. or Miss so-and-so-at-work or the thought that the grass must be greener elsewhere.

Some will say, “Those are harmless thoughts/actions.” Or “I’m not hurting anyone.” But those are lies. Faithfulness is a choice you make every day. On the good days, it’s easy. But it’s those bad days where the decision really counts—whether it’s in the face of temptation, hurt feelings, anger, dissatisfaction or laziness.

How would you answer these questions?

  • Would you ever ride in a car or have a meal alone with someone of the opposite sex? Why or why not?
  • Do you have any secrets from your spouse?
  • Are there any conversations you’ve had that you’d be embarrassed or anxious about if you knew your spouse had been listening?
  • Do you have an emotional connection with someone of the opposite sex who is not your spouse?

What about these?

  • Do you talk about your spouse with the utmost respect, especially when he or she is not present?
  • Do your actions communicate faithfulness towards your spouse and your marriage?
  • Is your marriage a top priority in your life?
  • If a neutral party examined how you spend your time, money and thoughts would your faithfulness to your spouse be obvious to them?
  • How do you handle disappointment in your spouse/marriage?

If you were looking for something a little less weighty, check out my previous posts from the AtoZ Challenge: Always, Beloved, Conflict, Date Night and Elation. Or come back tomorrow to see what I write for the letter G!

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2012 NARME Conference – Weekly Buzz!

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Subject: 2012 NARME Conference – Weekly Buzz!

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Live The Life

Spring has made its way across the nation, love is in the air, and the National Association for Relationship and Marriage Education (NARME) is excited about the buzz surrounding the upcoming NARME Conference to be held July 20-25 in Baltimore, Maryland.

Registration is now open at

Don’t miss your opportunity to get early bird specials for registration!

There are so many opportunities to learn from the BEST in the field. Just try to imagine how much you will learn from the preconference training masters:
3-Day (Friday/Saturday/Sunday - Jul 20-22)
3T-1 Active Adults, Fathers, Couples, Families & H.S. Youth Certification Training**
Kelly Simpson & Anthony Landry/Karen Anzak
This training equips and immediately certifies you to teach six Active Relationships curricula for MILITARY and for civilians and for Spanish-speaking singles, fathers, couples, parents/caregivers and children ages 3+! (Plus a program for MS/HS youth)

3T-2 World Class Marriage Training **
Patty Howell & Ralph Jones
Become trained to teach World Class Marriage, a dynamic evidence-based curriculum that gets rave reviews and strong outcome data. Fun and easy to teach with strong support materials. Great for large or small groups; exceptionally popular with Hispanics

3T-3 Relationship Intelligence Training

Richard Panzer & Linda Haft
Does sex have a meaning? What can brain research teach us about stages of bonding and intimacy? What impulse in men and women is stronger than the sex drive? What steps can teens take for more fulfillment in relationships?

3T-4 Certified Family Wellness Instructor Training: Survival Skills for Healthy Families**

Ana Morante & Wib Newton
Participants experience the content of the six basic sessions that provides families with effective tools and skills for healthy interactions. At the same time, they will learn and practice interactive techniques that have proven effective in the last 30 years to work with large groups of families, such as coaching, role play, sculpting, group activities, etc.

(Saturday/Sunday - Jul 21-22)
2T-1 Got Your Back
Natalie Jenkins
Got Your Back is a curriculum designed specifically for singles that includes some emphasis on common military concerns. It promotes skills such as self-awareness, communication, stress & anger management, goal-setting, and mindful choices, in addition to skill-building within romantic relationships.

2T-2 Strength Training for Strong Dads and Moms
J. Michael Hall

Learn how to provide parents the tools that they need to work together regardless of whether they are married, co-habitating, or sharing the custody of their children.

2T-3 TWO-IN-ONE: How to Avoid Falling for a Jerk or Jerkette and Couple (formerly Marriage) LINKS Certification Course**

John Van Epp & Randy Mewhirter/Fred Goff
TWO Certifications: 1) PICK: teach singles (youth/adults) how to safely build new romantic relationships & five areas of marriageability; 2) LINKS: teach couples how to successfully run their relationships & skills for keeping strong bonds.

2T-4 Adventures in Marriage CERTIFICATION TRAINING
Richard Albertson & Darin Saley
Qualify to become certified to teach Adventures in Marriage, a highly interactive program that teaches specific, practical skills for healthy, successful relationships.

2T-5 Becoming the Nonprofit People Love to Support: Peer-Proven Practices in the New Age of Charitable Investing
Bernice Smoot

People today do not give; they invest. Learn how peers are raising millions of dollars, despite tough times, by demonstrating returns on investment for government, taxpayers, and businesses.

(Sunday - Jul 22nd)
1T-1 PREPARE/ENRICH Certification**
Peter Larson
The customized version of PREPARE/ENRICH is the most advanced couple assessment tool available. The online format automatically tailors content for dating, engaged, or married couples. Learn to administer inventory and provide feedback. (Materials also available In Spanish!)

1T-2 A Better Me - Children’s Curriculum Training

Eva Fleming & Sarah Pichardo
A Better Me teaches children, ages 4 to 11, how to apply social-emotional learning skills and ethical values in everyday situations - enhancing cooperation, self-regulation, and moral behavior.

1T-3 Start Smart - Comprehensive premarital preparation**
Richard Marks, PhD & Darin Saley

Become certified to teach dating/engaged couples how to “Start Smart” through this comprehensive premarital program that offers flexible program options.

1T-4 WAIT (Why Am I Tempted?) Training

Joneen Mackenzie, RN
WAIT Training Certification educates, equips and empowers adolescents / emerging adults with the skills necessary to develop healthy relationships, build strong marriages and form safe and stable families in their future.

1T-6 Prepare,Enrich,Inspire for Teens! TOOB**
Jessica Pool

Based on decades of (P/E) research, P-E-I explores how relationships impact quality of life and teaches skills necessary for teens to create healthy relationships (now and in the future).

1T-7 10 Great Dates Master Trainer Certification**

Claudia & David Arp
Get certified as a Master Trainer to teach and train others to teach proven, widely-used Great Dates programs that combine fun dates with marriage skills.

1T-8 Training in the Zoe Engaged and Zoe Marriage inventory.
Jeff Meyers & Dr. Bryan Salminen
Learn how to effectively use both the Zoe Engaged Inventory and the Zoe Marriage Inventory to build stronger marriage relationships.

1T-9 Date Night Bootcamp

Tim Popadic & Sarah Meyer
Learn about, and walk out with, a Date Night experience to reach, engage and digitally connect with your constituents.



Strengthening Marriages and Families

P.O. Box 14946 | Tallahassee, FL 32317 US

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DCoE News - Warrior Resilience Conference Day 2: Trust, Support and Responsibility

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Subject: DCoE News - Warrior Resilience Conference Day 2: Trust, Support and Responsibility

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By Jayne Davis, DCoE Strategic Communications

Themes of resilience, trust, well-being and personal health dominated the second day of the Warrior Resilience Conference hosted by Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE) in Washington, D.C., March 29-30.

Cmdr. George Durgin, DCoE resilience and prevention division chief, set an upbeat tone in his opening remarks. "I'm looking forward to a full day of learning and taking back tools and tips (we) can utilize," Durgin said. Throughout the conference, military and civilian providers focused on the human dimension in restoring readiness." target="_blank">

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Special Children’s Bureau centennial live event

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Date: Thu, Apr 5, 2012 at 2:17 PM
Subject: Special Children’s Bureau centennial live event
To: Bill Coffin <>

Strengthening Families and Communities

Join us for a special broadcast of the Children’s Bureau centennial commemoration

April 9, 2012, 2:00-4:00 p.m. ET on  

Broadcast live from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
Headquarters in Washington, DC, including remarks by:

Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary, U. S. Department of Health & Human Services
George Sheldon, Acting Assistant Secretary, Administration for Children and Families
Joe Bock, Acting Associate Commissioner, Children’s Bureau

And featured speakers:

Dr. Olivia Golden, Former Assistant Secretary,
Administration for Children and Families
Joan E. Ohl, Former Commissioner, Administration on Children, Youth and Families
Mary Williams, President, National Association of Public Child Welfare Administrators
Bryan Samuels, Commissioner, Administration on Children, Youth and Families

Entertainment by the Washington Youth Choir

Presentation of the Children’s Bureau Centennial Award
in honor of extraordinary vision and leadership

Watch the event live on HHS TV at

Find out more about Children’s Bureau history at

Live Simply Love Elation


Posted: 05 Apr 2012 07:59 AM PDT


Remember the way you felt when he proposed? It’s one of those out-of-this-world experiences the moment you realize you are going to spend the rest of your life with the one you love.

Fotolia 21380723 XS ElationElation bubbles to the surface when you stare at that super-sparkly ring for hours on end. When you remember word-for-word {or try to at least} what he said when he proposed. When you dream about what the wedding will be like, what your dress will look like, and how you’ll be the Princess-For-a-Day.

And it’s not JUST about the wedding day. What about waking up next to him every morning? Sharing your dreams and fears and joys? Going through the ups and downs of daily life…but to know you get to do so together?

I can’t think of a better word to describe what the idea of getting married is like for many who are still waiting on that day.

But what happens when elation turns to frustration? We enter into marriage knowing it’s not going to be perfect. We can’t predict the trials we’ll face or exactly what formerly adorable characteristic of our spouse will eventually start to bug after a month or two under the same roof.

It was one of the most difficult things for me about being newly married. Because I still wanted to be elated! I thought something was wrong with me. Until I started to be honest—with myself and with the Husband. And then with trusted friends who loved me enough to be truthful about their struggles without judging me for mine.

Once we got past “yours and mine”—whether it was about our stuff or the way we did things differently—we were able to work through the frustration to get back to elation. But now I think I’d give it a different word—contentment.

What were you elated about when it came to your thoughts about marriage? 

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Live Simply Love Always

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Date: Sun, Apr 1, 2012 at 2:20 PM
Subject: Live Simply Love Always

Posted: 01 Apr 2012 05:49 AM PDT


It’s the first day of the A-to-Z April Challenge. Today’s post is brought to you by the letter “A” – and the topic: Top Ten things to Always practice in your marriage:

  1. Kiss goodnight. Pucker up and plant a wet one. Don’t let anything stand in the way of this daily expression of love before you move into slumber land.&copy; javarman 1566363 Subscription Monthly L 293x300 Always
  2. Be honest about your failures. No one is perfect. In fact, we all mess up A LOT. When you make a mistake or misstep, confess the truth and ask forgiveness. Then, be willing to forgive when you feel hurt.
  3. Put your spouse above any other human. Your marriage comes first—before your kids, parents, siblings, work, girlfriends or poker buddies. Pay attention to how you treat your spouse compared to others. If something is out of whack, refer back to #2.
  4. Treat him with respect. One of his greatest needs is to be respected by you. Examine your thoughts. Are they respectful? If not, those feelings will come out and bite him {and you} in the backside. Don’t speak poorly of him to anyone. It WILL affect your marriage. And not in a good way.
  5. Treat her with love. It’s one of her greatest needs—to feel and be aware of your love for her. Tell her, but most of all show her that you love her. This is different for every woman, so if you’re not sure what this means, ask her how you can do a better job of communicating your love.
  6. Reserve a little one-on-one time every day. Even if it’s just 5-10 minutes, take time to connect. Right before you go to bed, after you wake up, during dinner or after little ones go to bed. Just do it!
  7. Seek to learn something about your spouse. It may begin to feel like you know each other inside and out, but we are always growing. Make the effort to be a student of your spouse.
  8. Give the benefit of the doubt. He or she did not wake up this morning with the intention to hurt you. Assume the best whenever possible, even when you feel hurt.
  9. Pursue deeper intimacy. Be emotionally and physically vulnerable with each other. Share your hurts and fears. Express your desires. Tell each other your dreams. Make every effort to draw closer to each other, especially in difficult times.
  10. Express your appreciation. Live with a heart of gratitude for every little blessing and then TELL your spouse what you appreciate about him or her.

Is there anything else you would add to this list? 

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NCFMR News and Notes

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News and Notes

March 2012 

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The National Center for Family & Marriage Research (NCFMR), established in 2007 at Bowling Green State University (BGSU), welcomes you to News and Notes, our monthly electronic newsletter. News and Notes aims to keep you informed about the activities of the NCFMR. We will also announce funding and research opportunities, provide registration details for conferences and workshops, and keep you updated on current research findings.



What's New at the NCFMR...

Register for the NCFMR
Fathers & Fathering in Contemporary Contexts
2012 Research Conference 

Registration is required and seating is limited! Please email your name, title, and affiliation to After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with further details.

Just Released Data Resources


Family Profiles

Original reports summarizing and analyzing nationally representative data with the goal to provide the latest analysis of U.S. families.

The Data Source

Documents describing newly released data sets used by the family research community.

Working Paper Series 
A collection of working papers written by faculty affiliates, researchers, and advanced graduate students

NCFMR in the News
For a full list of NCFMR in the News items and for media links to each item, visit the NCFMR in the News webpage. 
  • Divorce Rate Has Remained Stable Over the Past Two Decades, Says Susan Brown
  • Wendy Manning's Research Finds Cohabiting's Effects on Marital Stability Have Changed
  • New Research by Susan Brown, NCFMR Co-Director, and I-Fen Lin, NCFMR BGSU Research Affiliate, Addresses "Gray Divorce" Among New Generation of Empty Nesters
  • Lisa Diamond and Angela Hicks, NCFMR Pilot Data Awardees, Find Couples Who Share Financial Problems Are the Most Satisfied
  • Susan Brown Comments on Large Families Surrounding Leading Presidential Candidates
  • NCFMR Research Finds Crossover in Median Age at First Marriage and First Birth
  • Susan Brown Comments on Changing Views of Marriage
  • Karen Benjamin Guzzo, NCFMR Research Affiliate, Discusses Path to Financial Fertility
  • Recently Released Research by Susan Brown and I-Fen Lin Addresses the Trend of Growing Old Single

NCFMR in the News



Proportion of Births to Unmarried Women in the U.S. Has More Than Doubled Over the Past Three Decades 

Over 40% of all U.S. births are to unmarried women. Most of these unmarried women are cohabiting with the child's father. One in four births is to a cohabiting woman, whereas fewer than 1 in 5 births is to a single, unpartnered woman. The rapid rise in unmarried childbearing coupled with the growth in cohabitation makes it important to disaggregate unmarried births to distinguish between those that occur to cohabiting versus single, unpartnered women.

Percentage of Births by Informal Marital Status of Mother,
% of Births by Informal Marital Status  
Source: NSFG 2006-2010

Family Profile

Upcoming Events 



April 2012 


Call for Proposals -- Wisconsin Council on Family Relations

Sustainability: Thriving in Challenging Times

Contact for submission deadlines and details 


Call for Applications -- CU Population Center 

Introduction to Spatial Demography: Geospatial Data and Spatial Regression 

Date Due: April 2

Link to University of Colorado at Boulder  


Call for Submissions -- Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD) 

2012 Themed Meeting: Transitions from Adolescence to Adulthood

Date Due: April 5

Link to SRCD 


Minnesota Association for Family and Early Education (MNAFEE) Conference

Dates: April 11-13

Link to MNAFEE 


Breakfast with NCCP

Help honor individuals who have made a lasting imprint in the battle against child poverty in America

Date: April 14



Call for Applications -- Feminism and Family Studies Awards

The Outstanding Research Proposal from a Feminist Perspective

The Outstanding Contribution to Feminist Scholarship Paper Award

Date Due: April 15

Link to NCFR 


Call for Applications -- Summer Institute in LGBT Population Health

Date Due: April 16

Link to Center for Population Research in LGBT Health 


International Organization of Social Sciences and Behavioral Research (IOSSBR) Spring 2012 Conference

Date: April 23-25

Link to IOSSBR  


Center for Adolescent Research and Development (CARD) 2012 Conference

Adolescence in the 21st Century: Constants and Challenges 

Date: April 28 

Link to Mount St. Mary College

May 2012


Call for Applications -- NIJ PhD Graduate Research Fellowship Program

Date Due: May 2

Link to U.S. Department of Justice 


Call for Applications -- W.E.B. DuBois Fellowship for Research in Race, Gender, Culture, and Crime

Date Due: May 2

Link to U.S. Department of Justice 


New Integrated Fertility Survey Series (IFSS) Data Set Introductory Workshop

To be held at the PAA 2012 Annual Meeting (see PAA below)  

Date: May 2

Link to Population Studies Center (PSC) IFSS Brochure 


Population Association of America (PAA) 2012 Annual Meeting

Dates: May 3-5

Link to PAA 


Northwest Council on Family Relations Spring Conference

For Better AND Worse: The Revolution in Family Life

Date: May 18

Link to NWCFR 

2012 NCFMR Annual Research Conference

Fathers and Fathering in Contemporary Contexts

Dates: May 23-24

Link to NCFMR Conference Website 


15th Annual Welfare Research and Evaluation Conference

Dates: May 30-June 1

Link to Office of Planning, Research & Evaluation, An Office of the Administration for Children & Families (ACF)   



June 2012


The Center for Research on Families (CRF) -- UMass, Amherst 

Summer 2012 Methodology Workshop Series 

Dates: Varied Dates in June

Link to CRF 



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Dr. Susan Brown

Dr. Wendy Manning


Social Science Data Analysts

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