An Ode to Dads: Then and Now

It goes without saying that becoming a dad is one of the most important jobs you can have in your life and being a dad is a lifetime proposition. It was true in the 1950s and it’s still true today. It is a commitment that involves patience, perseverance and, of course, love. We thought we’d take a snapshot of dads seventy years ago and fathers today. What has changed? What hasn’t?

Time to Settle Down

According to The United States Census Bureau[i], In the 1950s, the average age for a man to marry was about 23. By 2020, that number had jumped to just over 30. Although many men are still getting hitched today, many others are in committed relationships outside of wedlock. A phenomenon that was less common sixty, seventy years ago.

A Bun in the Oven

Men’s roles in pregnancy and child-rearing have unequivocally changed over the decades. While men were definitely involved and supportive of their partners in the 50s, they were generally kept out of the loop when it came to the big day.

The truth is, whether we look at the patriarch of the family now, seventy years ago or even two hundred years ago and further back still, fathers have always played a vital role in creating, educating (school of life), and leading their respective children from babies to grown men. When a man is honorable, respectful, hardworking, and kind, chances are there’s a good dad behind that.

Work/Life Balance

This is most probably where the most change can be seen in terms of men’s reality seventy years ago and their situation now. Men were typically the only or main breadwinners back then. It wasn’t uncommon for the center of men’s lives to be their work, often staying at a job their whole working life.

Today, many men have several jobs throughout their lifetime, often opting for quality of life instead of a bigger paycheck and prestige. Dads realize that time with their kids is precious. Many are opting to work virtually and can even maintain a heavy workload all the while being more present in their children’s day-to-day routines.

A Look at Men’s Health

One really noticeable and important change between men now versus then is that today’s guys are much more conscious about their overall health and well-being compared to men in the 50s. This is shown in the decline of low-age death rates among men nowadays.

According to the CDC[ii], men’s life expectancy in 1950 was 65.6. In 2007, that number had jumped to 75.4 and climbed to 76.6, reports Worldometer[iii].

Men are more active today compared to their predecessors. Today’s fellas exercise more, eat better, practice de-stressing activities such as yoga, meditation, and other mindfulness practices and they even, more and more, have started to include supplementation in their diets without any coaxing or arm-twisting from their significant others. Men know that proper weight management, healthy joints, and a happy heart, are all crucial to living a long, energetic, and vibrant life.

So, Happy Father’s Day to all the dads who have created, educated, and led their children to be well-rounded individuals. Thanks for all that you do and please, keep taking care of yourselves. We really love having you around.

 

References:
[i] https://www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/visualizations/time-series/demo/families-and-households/ms-2.pdf
[ii] https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/hus/2010/022.pdf
[iii] https://www.worldometers.info/demographics/us-demographics/#life-exp

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