July 28, 2012 12:46 PM
Unwed mothers: 40% of all birthsWhat a sad day it was when the powers-that-be decided we needed to remove the stigma from fatherless families!
As one who grew up in a fatherless family, I'm glad I felt uncomfortable with my situation - and drew inspiration from more healthy families.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: while every individual deserves dignity and respect, it is wrong to say that all configurations of family are equal. Children have the best chance to succeed when brought up by a loving father and mother. Promiscuity, drug abuse, school drop-out rates are symptoms of the despair of growing up without a father.
Perfecting an ethic handed down by the Boomers.
One of the most alarming charts from Charles Murray's Coming Apart -- an unparalleled treatise on the decline of white America -- traces the increase in non-marital births during the 20th century. Between 1917 and 1965, rates of unwed motherhood in white America were well below 5 percent. Between 1965 and 2010, that figure spiked by over 25 percentage points.
And that's in white America alone. Including minority groups, the out-of-wedlock birth rate in the United States is now 40 percent, nearly half of all births. Perhaps more than any other cultural developments, unwed motherhood -- and absent fatherhood -- are having a disastrous economic and cultural impact on the United States.
Kay Hymowitz, writing in the Los Angeles Times, recently summarized the financial costs for households, particularly those headed by women ostensibly liberated by the feminist revolution:
Poverty remains relatively rare among married couples with children; the U.S. census puts only 8.8% of them in that category, up from 6.7% since the start of the Great Recession. But more than 40% of single-mother families are poor, up from 37% before the downturn. In the bottom quintile of earnings, most households are single people, many of them elderly. But of the two-fifths of bottom-quintile households that are families, 83% are headed by single mothers. The Brookings Institution's Isabel Sawhill calculates that virtually all the increase in child poverty in the United States since the 1970s would vanish if parents still married at 1970 rates.
In Coming Apart, Murray writes about the growing acceptance of single-parenthood households as both normal and good -- perhaps even desirable. "For the first time in human history, we now have societies in which a group consisting of a lone woman and her offspring is not considered to be sociologically incomplete -- not considered to be illegitimate," he writes.
Read more at American Spectator
Maybe it's inaccurate but it seems to me that men in our society have largely lost the idea of honor. We have become a society of adolescent men who never seem required or desire to grow up. This has left a great many fatherless households. I'm not sure how that gets turned around when we have a society that wants to extend that adolescence (ie. health care for 26 year old "children").
Posted by: Diane | July 28, 2012 5:01 PM
Big government and sexual revolution against Christian and/or moral standards have brought about a society that is self destructive by its very nature.
Posted by: Watchtower | July 29, 2012 6:46 PM
It breaks my heart to see how many single moms are out there because Dad decided that the responsibility of family was not his cup of tea after all. At the same time, while I am in no way an advocate of celebrating single parenthood as a beautiful thing, I am thankful that we have let go of the stigma of shame, as if all single moms choose to raise their kids without a father.
I feel the need to risk transparency here: I became a single mom a little over a year ago when my husband chose to leave our family. I am now in the final stages of a divorce, not because I gave up on my marriage but because someone else did. Aside from some child support and occasional visits, I am basically doing the parenting thing alone, again, not because I want to but because the choice was made for me. One fear I had in the beginning was that my sons and I would be judged and stigmatized by those who didn't know the whole story. Praise God, that has not happened. If it has, He has shielded us from it. He continues to surround this fatherless family with Godly role models, support, and love.
My great-grandmother, on the other hand, was completely snubbed by her community, including her church, when her husband left her with nine children, for another woman. All of her kids bore the scars of losing not only their dad but also their friends. I am so grateful that single moms and fatherless children no longer face this extreme. As least they don't face it as often.
If we are going to stigmatize anything, it should be irresponsible fathers who choose to bail out so they can live like teenagers.
Yes, statistics say that children who grow up without fathers struggle in many areas, but God also has a way of being incredibly gracious and bringing good out of painful circumstances. I have definitely seen this in my sons' lives. I know they suffer, especially knowing that their dad chose to leave, but they also know they are loved by many and see God providing in amazing ways, and I know that is making a huge difference.
I think it's important to remember that, no matter what happened with their parents, it is not the kids' fault that they are only being raised by Mom.
My current situation is softening my heart for single parents, not because I think this is the way it should be (Who in their right mind wouldn't choose a whole family?), but because I know that I never expected to be here, yet here I am. How many other women are, like me, just trying to survive and do their best?
I didn't mean to go on for this long, but did feel a nudge to share my views.
I continue to enjoy your blog, Barbara. Thank you for being so open to comments.
Posted by: Jeanette | July 31, 2012 10:20 PM