Girl sitting on smiling man's shoulder. Statistics on Fatherhood
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In this article, you will find 30 statistics on fatherhood from across the world.

In our last article, we explored what it means to be a father with three Jamaican dads as they give us their views on the topic.

However, this article looks at the statistics on fatherhood in some common areas to show you the real numbers behind being a dad.

General Statistics on Fatherhood

Girls smiling touching smiling man's face. Statistics on Fatherhood
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1. There are an estimated 74 million dads in the United States, and 72 million of those are biological fathers.

2. Of the 72 million biological fathers, 5.9 million or 8.2% have never been married.

3. 73.4% of the fathers are married, 12.9% are divorced, 3.2% are widowed, and 2.3% are separated.

4. 3% of Black dads are aged between 15-19 and 24.9% are aged between 20-29 years old.

5. Men aged 40-50 years old with a Bachelor’s degree are less likely to have children than men with a high school diploma.

6. An estimated 1.4 million men are stay-at-home dads.

7. In 2020 there were 6.96million families with a single father.

8. In 2020, data show that there are about 1.3 million Black single fathers, 3.5 million White single fathers, and 1.69 million Hispanic single fathers.

Number of single fathers in the USA 2020 graph statistics on fatherhood
Data source:

Time Spent on Unpaid Care Work and Childcare by Fathers

Fathers’ share of unpaid work and childcare has increased in recent years but the share of care work that men do at home is still significantly less than what women do.

9. Finland is the only country in the world where men spend more time with school-aged children than mothers. Finnish men spend on average 8 minutes more than women on child care.

10. Globally, between 1998-2012, men’s time per day spent on unpaid care work increased by 13 minutes while women’s time per day spent on unpaid care work decreased by 10 minutes.

11. According to the State of the World’s Father, at this pace of change, it will take 92 years to achieve equality in unpaid care work between men and women.

12. However, if men were to do 50 per cent of unpaid care would, they would need to increase their time spent on unpaid care work by 50 minutes per day. 

There is however hope for change. Men want to contribute more and have reported that they contributed equally to the share of domestic care work.

13. A comparison of women and men who say they share routine childcare equally shows that in Nigeria, 25% of men said they share childcare equally, while 44% of men in Tanzania said the same, but 13% of Ugandan men said they share childcare equally.

14. Also, 85% of men in high and middle-income countries said that they “would do whatever it takes to be very involved in the early stages of taking care of their newborn or adopted child.

Statistics on Father Involvement in the lives of their Children

When it comes to fathers being active in their children’s lives, the data show that fathers who live with the children benefit more. The data below are from a Pew Research analysis of the National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG) in the United States which surveyed over 13,000 people between 2006-2008; 6,139 were males.

15. The data show that 93% of dads who live with their children said they talked to their children about things that happened in their children’s day several times a day. This is compared to 31% of fathers who do not live with their children.

16. Similarly, 94% of fathers who live with their children said that they ate meals together several times per week whilst only 16% of fathers who do not live with their children said they ate meals with their children.

17. The majority of fathers who live with their children (63%) said they helped their children with homework several times per week. This is in comparison to 10% of fathers who do not live with their children.

18. Additionally, 54% of dads who live with their children said they took their children to and from their activities several times per week. Meanwhile, only 11% of dads who do not live with their children did this.

There is a greater benefit for fathers’ involvement in their children’s lives if the fathers live with their children than those who do not, and this is also true for fathers of young children.

19. 98% of fathers who live with their children said they played with their young children under 5 years old several times per week.

20. 95% reported that they fed or shared meals with their children under 5 years old several times per week.

21. Meanwhile, 60% of fathers who live with their children reported that they read to their young children several times per week with 25% reporting that they occasionally read to their young children.

22. This trend continued with 89% of fathers saying that they bathed, dressed and helped their young children with toileting several times per day.

Statistics on Fatherhood
Photo: Margo Morrison

Parental Leave and Paternity Leave: Fatherhood Statistics

Studies have shown the benefits of paternity leave on child development, the family and the individual. However, there are still many countries that do not have established paternity leave laws for fathers to take advantage of. Even more so, very few countries offer paid paternity leave.

23. Only 71 countries guarantee parental leave for fathers only. Fathers are more likely to take parental leave if encouraged to do so by quotas and bonuses.

24. In Nigeria, 14 days of paternity leave is given to Civil Servants while in South Africa, 10 days of unpaid parental leave is granted to men.

25. There are zero laws in the English Caribbean, including Jamaica, for paternity leave.

26. Data from a 2016 OECD Policy Brief show that Korea tops the list of countries that give paid paternity and paid parental leave to fathers; it offers fathers 53 weeks. The Netherlands and Greece of 2 days while Italy offer fathers 1 day. Meanwhile, the USA, Canada and Switzerland offer none.

weeks of paid paternity leave and paid parental leave for only fathers 2015 statistics on fatherhood
Data source: OECD

Celebration of Dads

It is safe to say that Father’s Day Celebrations are a big deal. Similar to Mother’s Day, dads are recognised with their very own day where their children and family members show them love and appreciation with gifts.

27. A survey of over 8,000 people showed that in the US, 76% of people said that they plan to celebrate Father’s Day.

28. When compared to mothers, fathers a more likely to say that they want nothing for their special day. Based on a survey of over 1,000 people, 19% of dads said that they wanted nothing for Father’s Day while 11% said that wanted a card. Others preferred electronics (7%), alcohol (6%), a day to themselves (6%), chocolate/candy (6%) or flowers (1%).

Data source:

29. A survey of 8,297 people shows that on average, people aged 24-35 years old in the US plan to spend $250 on Father’s Day gifts.

30. A comparison between men and women shows that 54% of men said they plan to buy a Father’s Day gift for their father or stepfather. However, women are more likely to buy a Father’s Day gift for their husbands and other men in their lives.

who do you plan to buy Father's Day gift for? Statistics on Fatherhood.
Data source:

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