The Disenfranchised Father Syndrome – An Overview

The Disenfranchised Father Syndrome – An Overview

For many in a family the stress of divorce can be quite high. For fathers this is especially true. The sense of loss and in many cases the loss of being a father is just too great. For many fathers this means a sense of loss and often a great depression occurs in the father. What this does to the father’s world view is pretty obvious as the sense of betrayal and hopelessness can be overwhelming. All of these events in a father’s life can lead to what is called the Disenfranchised Father Syndrome.

What are the results of the Disenfranchised Father Syndrome?

For many fathers the first and immediate result is a depression that hurts the father’s ability to make a contribution to the world around him. Further on if left untreated this can lead to other physical illnesses such as heart attacks, stroke and other cases where the father will need to be hospitalized for some medical illness.

Most of the time these events occur in a very hostile and adversarial environment. Having your life turned upside down by someone you used to care about can be about the most stressful thing a father can go through. A hostile lawyer in the mix surely just adds to the stress and slowly chips at the father’s ability to cope with the world around him. This lack of ability to cope with the emotional onslaught of divorce can cause many men to become immobilized and frozen in their world.

The Disenfranchisement of Fathers

For many men the court system may seem weighted against them. Many men believe that the courts are biased towards men and lean too much on trying to help the women in the family. They see the world through their own pain and not through any objective means. For many men they can rightly say that they were disenfranchised in the courts and elsewhere. However that is not an excuse to stop living or paying for child support.

What can be done about this?

For many men the sense of loss because of divorce is just too much. That is where we can begin to attack this issue. The support groups for men need to be emphasized as equally as much for men and for women alike. Emotional health needs to be considered for both parents. Without this consideration many fathers are going to get into a lot of health problems that they might not be able to get out of.