While an involved mother can also help stave off a teen’s sexual activity, dads have twice the influence.
It’s something predatory men and teenage boys have known for hundreds of years; maybe forever: girls without fathers are easier to have sex with. The less prominent the fathers role in the girls life, the higher your chances of getting her to have sex with you with little coaxing or commitment. Perhaps in the past this was due much more to protectionism and the family structure of older times where father knows best and curfews were at 9 o’clock, but despite the cultural shift, the reality and reliability of the father-daughter rule remains.
Teenage boys know the rule all the more. You have a massively higher shot at getting laid by a girl raised by a whose parents are divorced, single mom, or who just hates daddy. This is frequently pointed out by male shock entertainers like Howard Stern and the now in exile Tom Leykis.
Now research by Boston College social psychologist Rebekah Levine Coley confirms it all with scientific observation in a study that surveyd 3,206 teens, ages 13 to 18, who all came from two-parent homes. The teens were asked about both their sexual behaviors and their relationships with their parents, including how much each parent knows about how they spend their time when they’re not home, and how much time they spent with each parent on activities like eating or playing games.
The impact of family time overall was especially notable. One additional family activity per week predicted a 9 percent drop in sexual activity.
Linda Carroll, an MSNBC contributor, writes in response to the study that when it comes to preventing risky teen sex, “there may be no better deterrent than a doting dad”.
Patrick Tolan, a professor of psychiatry and director of the Institute for Juvenile Research at the University of Illinois in Chicago explained, “if you’re spending time talking to them, they’re going to get your values and they’re more likely to think things through rather than acting impulsively.”