In a study that in no way has to do with human fathers, scientists at the University of Cambridge found that all the good dads in the burying beetle world were dying younger.

Burying beetles, BTW, are these nasty-ass bugs that find dead birds and mice and bury the carcass. They then lay their eggs near it, and the larvae hatch, crawl into the carcass and feed on the dead animal and we all throw up just thinking about it.

But we’re going somewhere with this.

Beetle Science

British scientists conducted a study with these dryheave-inducing beetles and found two important characteristics: first, that larvae receiving no infant care were far worse at parenting themselves once they had their own brood of disgusting carcass-eating beetles (and died younger), and second, that the good fathers picking up slack for bad mothers (or mums as they call them in the UK) died much younger than fathers receiving more parenting help around the house. The dead animal carcass house.

Burying BeetleIf there’s anything interesting about this study, it’s that scientists found that good beetle-parents were made non-genetically; as long as a beetle received good parenting (from any source), they would become a good parent.

“Good quality parents produce offspring that become good parents themselves, while offspring that receive poor parenting then become low quality parents,” said lead researcher Professor Rebecca Kilner from the Department of Zoology at the University of Cambridge. “Our experiments show how parental care allows offspring to inherit characteristics of their parents, but non-genetically.”

Though the research only applies to these nasty-ass beetles, humanity might operate on similar terms, though research indicates that even “good” parents are screwing their kids up any damn way. In the meantime, single fathers and those compensating for a slacking spouse should make sure to take a moment here and there to relax, lest they find themselves dead earlier, being buried by beetles and having larvae feed off their insides