15 Responsibilities (Duties) of a Husband and Father (Family Man)

Last Updated on February 14, 2024 by Lifevif Team and JC Franco

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When you become a father, everything changes. Suddenly your responsibilities increase, and you may be left feeling a little lost or overwhelmed. Even though your responsibilities increase as a father, it’s important to remember that you are still a partner to your wife. Knowing your responsibilities as a father and husband will give you a solid foundation to work from. 

As a husband and father, there are essential responsibilities that you have to face up to. Today we’re going to discuss how you can step up to the plate as a family man. To be a better husband and father, try to incorporate these responsibilities into your life. 

These are 15 main responsibilities of a husband and father:

1. Be in control of your emotions and reactions.

As a husband and father, all eyes will be on you to lead the family with a sense of calm confidence. If you lose your temper easily or have emotional outbursts, that’s going to set a level of fear within your family members, and that’s no way to lead your “team”. Learn to have your emotions under control along with your reactions. This doesn’t mean that you can never get mad or frustrated. It means that you have to seek out healthy outlets for these feelings. 

2. Be willing to provide for your family. 

In the past, men were the sole providers for the family. That has undoubtedly changed over the years, and now husbands and wives tend to share the financial responsibility. Even if you share the responsibility with your wife, be prepared to put in the time and effort to ensure that your family is always provided for. 

3. Protect your family.

As a husband and father, you are the protector of your family. Make sure that you implement safety measures to keep your family members safe. Keep in touch with each family member to ensure that they are safe at all times. 

4. Be a good example for your family. 

Fathers don’t lead with an iron fist. Instead, lead by setting a good example. If you want your children to grow up kind and caring, make sure that you show them just how kind and caring you always are. If you want your children to always be honest and take responsibility for their actions, show that you are always willing to do so yourself. 

5. Develop a healthy work-life balance.

It’s not bad to be dedicated to your career. If you are, try to set aside dedicated family time so that your wife and children don’t start to feel neglected. Developing a healthy work-life balance is important. Try to keep to regular work hours and try not to bring work home with you. 

6. Help around the house.

Gone are the days where all the household chores were the responsibility of the wife. Nowadays, husband and wife share the responsibility equally while looking after the kids. 

It sometimes helps to have a chore schedule so that doing your bit becomes a part of your routine. Perhaps you can handle some of the tasks such as taking out the trash, doing the dishes a few nights a week, or managing dinner for the family a few nights a week. Not only will your wife appreciate the help, but your kids will learn what a real equal relationship is all about and will be able to ensure that they aren’t taken advantage of in the future or don’t unwittingly take advantage of someone else.

7. Educate yourself on parenting.

Some dads don’t immediately feel a natural connection to fatherhood, and the reality is that mothers are at an advantage. Having carried the baby for 9 months, mothers are more connected, and natural instincts kick in early. Fathers, on the other hand, have to learn as they go. 

While your wife can teach you a lot along the way, it is your responsibility to educate yourself as much as you can so that you can step up to the plate. You can find books on parenting and fatherhood as well as many videos on YouTube to watch. You can also spend some time talking to other dads who can impart some of their own wisdom with you. 

8. Keep the romance alive.

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Being a father can be busywork. It can even be a little overwhelming. While you are focusing on all the new responsibilities that fatherhood brings, you might start to neglect keeping your relationship interesting and alive. Keeping the romance alive is essential. Set aside some time for a date night, or get a babysitter and whisk your wife away for an exciting weekend. Try to ensure that you don’t neglect the very reasons why you got together in the first place.

9. Get to know the kids – bond with them.

Being a husband and dad is not just about being there to help with chores and provide safety. Instead, it’s more about bonding with the kids as well as your wife. Having a relationship with each and every one of your family members is important. 

Spend time with each of your children separately as well as together as a group. When you know what makes each of them tick, it is easier to get through to them, easier to lead them, and easier to discipline them. Your wife will also absolutely love your dedication to your children, which will certainly strengthen your relationship too. 

10. Be a good disciplinarian.

Being a good dad doesn’t mean being the fun dad who never puts his foot down. If you want what is best for your kids, you have to take responsibility and ensure that your children are accountable for their actions. When the kids do something wrong, you need to be prepared to discipline them in a way that will really hit home for each of them. 

11. Serve your family.

Fathers lead the family by serving them. You can’t lead your family by simply telling them what to do. You can lead more effectively by serving them too. If you can be humble, giving, hardworking, and selfless for the sake of the family, it will not go unnoticed. The rewards for this approach will also be great. 

12. Put your wife first and let the kids witness it.

One of the biggest responsibilities fathers and husbands have, is showing the kids what a respectable and healthy relationship looks like. Your children will watch how you and your wife treat each other and deem that to be “normal”. It might seem harmless, but it isn’t. What they see, they will accept for themselves in the future. Putting your wife first will be a good lesson for the kids to see. Love each other, and your kids will see the importance of this. 

13. Be patient and slow to anger. 

A good husband is patient and faithful. A good father is patient and slow to anger. You need to focus on being the type of father and husband that’s approachable and understanding. Your family won’t feel like they can come to you with their problems if you are impatient or quickly get angry. 

14. Put your family first and support each member individually.

The most important thing in your life should be your family. If you find that your friends, hobbies, job, or other interests come first before your family, you are not living up to your responsibility as a father and a husband. Work with your wife to create the type of schedule that allows you to put your family first without having to drop all of your hobbies, friends, and other interests. Planning can really help in this particular area.

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15. Bring an element of fun into the home.

As a husband and father, you can really bring the family together at the end of a long day by providing a bit of fun into the home. Gather the kids around, make them laugh, tease your wife, and generally lift the mood. This will undoubtedly become something that the family starts to value and look forward to. 

All things considered

Some of these responsibilities might seem obscure, but if you are willing to work and improve in these areas, you will see your relationship flourish with each and every member of your family.  

Being a husband and dad can be overwhelming, even though it’s highly rewarding. Taking the time to learn what your responsibilities are and how to step up to the plate can really help you to become the best husband and father you can be without losing too much of yourself.

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This article was co-authored by our team of in-house and freelance writers, and reviewed by our editors, who share their experiences and knowledge about the "Seven F's of Life".

JC Franco
Editor | + posts

JC Franco is a New York-based editor for Lifevif. He covers topics like spirituality, philosophy, finance, sports, games, and food. JC earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business with a Marketing Concentration at Mercyhurst University. He is a certified USPTA professional who teaches tennis in the New York City Metropolitan area. He has passed the Level I exam of the CFA program.