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Fatherhood by the Numbers

Becoming a father is a life changing event, and one that will influence your decisions for the rest of your life. While that may sound daunting, it’s simply something to celebrate. Being a father means many things to many people, but to all of them, it means sharing a life of love and opportunity. To help you know you’re not alone in fatherhood, here are a few ideas of how many others are in your boat.

70.1 million Estimated number of fathers across the nation in 2008, the most recent year for which data are available.

24.4 million Number of fathers who were part of married-couple families with children younger than 18 in 2012.
• 21 percent were raising three or more children younger than 18 (among married-couple family households only).
• 3 percent were a subfamily living in someone else’s home.

1.96 million Number of single fathers in 2012; 16 percent of single parents were men.
• Nine percent were raising three or more children younger than 18.
• About 44 percent were divorced, 31 percent were never married, 20 percent were separated, and 5 percent were widowed.
• 42 percent had an annual family income of $50,000 or more.

Thinking of You, Dad

7,368 The number of men’s clothing stores around the country (as of 2010), a good place to buy dad a tie or shirt.

15,542 The number of hardware stores (as of 2010), a place to buy hammers, wrenches, screwdrivers and other items high on the list of Father’s Day gifts. Additionally, there were 6,764 home centers across the country in 2010.

21,418 Number of sporting goods stores in 2010. These stores are good places to purchase traditional gifts for dad, such as fishing rods and golf clubs.

79.1 million The number of Americans who participated in a barbecue in 2010. It’s probably safe to assume many of these barbecues took place on Father’s Day.


Stay at Home Dads

189,000 Estimated number of stay-at-home dads in 2012. These married fathers with children younger than 15 have remained out of the labor force for at least one year primarily so they can care for the family while their wife works outside the home. These fathers cared for upward of 369,000 children.

18% In spring 2011, the percentage of preschoolers regularly cared for by their father during their mother’s working hours.


Child-Support Payments

$1.9 billion Amount of child support received by custodial fathers in 2009; they were due $3.5 billion. In contrast, custodial mothers received $19.5 billion of the $31.7 billion in support that was due.
34% Percentage of custodial fathers who received all child support that was due in 2009, not significantly different from the corresponding percentage for custodial mothers, 42 percent.

70% Percentage of custodial fathers receiving noncash support, such as gifts or coverage of expenses, on behalf of their children. The corresponding proportion for mothers was 58 percent.


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