New Study Finds Parenthood Makes People More Law-Abiding

Parenthood is both wonderful – and wonderfully challenging.

Raising children takes a lot of hard work, sleepless nights, and self-sacrifice. But most everyone will tell you it’s also worth it.

And according to a new study, parenthood doesn’t just benefit the children at the expense of parents. It helps parents become better, more law-abiding people.

The study was conducted by two doctoral students at the University of California, Berkeley. It found that when couples first find out that a baby is on the way, the average number of crimes the mom and dad commit drops dramatically.

For moms, “Pregnancy triggers enormous positive changes: drug, alcohol, and economic offenses decline precipitously at the start of the pregnancy, bottoming out in the months right before birth.”

And for fathers, “Men sharply desist from all crimes at the start of the pregnancy and continue to offend at lower levels following the birth, with reductions around 25 percent for economic and drug crimes.”

This is great news and confirms why we at Focus on the Family are so passionate about protecting babies in the womb and helping moms and dads parent well.

Over the past year, Focus on the Family has helped more than 172,000 parents work through a crisis with their child, and has equipped at least 770,000 moms and dads to build stronger and healthier families.

But a reduction in crime rates isn’t the only way that marriage and parenting is good for couples. An additional benefit for Christian couples is that the family helps us obtain a glimpse of God.

Scripture tells us that children are gifts from God. “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward.Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth” (Psalm 127:3-4).

As we move forward into the new decade, if you have children, consider how God has used them to help you to see Him more fully.

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Jim Daly

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