NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Most Americans believe good mothers and fathers must be loving, supportive and protecting, but few see the necessity of parents having a commitment to Christianity or religion, according to a recent survey.
Lifeway Research conducted a survey in March to gauge opinions of the expected roles of parents at a time when Americans typically begin giving thoughts toward Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.
According to the survey, “Loving” is the No. 1 characteristic deemed mandatory for mothers (85 percent) and fathers (79 percent). After “loving,” four of the next five characteristics are shared, including “supporting,” “protecting,” “encouraging,” and “involved.”
“The consistency of what Americans expect of fathers and mothers is a sharp contrast to many of the popular storylines in films and books,” said Scott McConnell, director of Lifeway Research, pointing out the characteristic “fun” garnered consideration from just 57 and 54 percent for mothers and fathers, respectively.
“While a little more than half of Americans say mothers and fathers must be ‘fun,’ more people expect parents to be loving, supporting, encouraging, and understanding,” he said.
What Americans don’t necessarily see as mandatory traits of good mothers and fathers are religious convictions, including being a committed Christian.