Remember the village it takes to raise a child, with everyone willing to help, support and sustain each other? Guess that's just talk. Maybe I shouldn’t post this right now since I’m emotional and I don’t have time to expound on my thoughts. Probably some of you have heard about this report on MSNBC.
"Gay families more accepted than single moms
Pew study find Americans are split evenly overall on accepting 'non-traditional families' but disparage single moms”
Really? Disparage? In case you aren’t sure what disparage means, here are some definitions from online.
Disparage: to lower in rank or reputation, to depreciate by indirect means (as invidious comparison), speak slightingly about, express a negative opinion of, insult, ridicule
There is part of the study that I think is good and I do agree with: “a third (Rejectors) consider non-traditional arrangements to be damaging to the country’s social fabric”. Yes, the destruction of families creates difficulties for the adults and for the children in that family, but also is destructive to society. There have been books written on this subject.
“[These consequences] are not only to be expected, they are virtually inevitable. What we sowed we now reap. If you want the truth in all of this, it is that the law of the harvest cannot be repealed. The law of the harvest is the same in every historical period, in every nation, in every culture. . . . That society that sows the wind will reap the whirlwind. We are reaping the whirlwind of family destruction."
Elder Alexander B. Morrison of the Seventy, Utah North Area president, May 2, 1997 (at the annual convention of the Association of Mormon Counselors and Psychotherapists)
I just wrote about The Family: A Proclamation to the World in a post recently. “The family is ordained of God.” I do believe that children deserve to have a father and mother in their home. If that is what the people are expressing in the study, I agree. Since the questions are not included in the study, we cannot know what the opinions really are. Were they asked if single women should be allowed to adopt? Or if it they thought it was acceptable for single women to have children outside of marriage? Or something else?
“While 98 percent of Acceptors think there’s nothing wrong with women raising their children alone, 99 percent of Skeptics and 98 percent of Rejectors believe that’s bad for society. (The survey only asked about single mothers, not single fathers.)”
BUT the byline actually says Americans “disparage single moms”. That leads me to believe that there were questions that asked about how people VIEW single mothers. If that is true, it’s very sad.
Friends who were friends with you and your ex-spouse don’t want to take sides or don’t know what to say, so they stop calling or inviting you to do things. You no longer have a spouse to talk to your friend’s husband so you aren’t invited to dinner with your family and theirs. Just when you feel lonelier than you ever have, some people stay away. I am so grateful for the friends I have that have helped me by listening and by calling or texting just to ask how I am. I have been blessed with a family (parents, brothers, sisters, and their spouses) who love and support me and accept me.
I really believe that despite the byline, many people do not look down on single mothers in general. But it is still very hard for me to accept and to tell others. I am still embarrassed to say that I am divorced, let alone that I’m a single mother. I already felt that some people (not everyone, I know) judged me and now with this headline, I’m not feeling better about it.
Most of us single mothers aren’t single mothers because we aspired to be or even chose to be. Many of the single women I know work many hours when they would love to be a stay-at-home mother, nurturing and rearing their children, but that choice was taken away from them. A couple of my friends have two jobs to be able to support their children when the fathers chose not to. Thankfully that isn’t always the case. They cook, clean, help children with homework, do all the daily tasks married mothers do, but they do them alone. They love their children and juggle their schedule so they can see their children in school plays or attend sports games. Most want the blessing that many others enjoy of a loving companion. Instead of disparaging, step up and offer a listening ear or lend a hand. Be a friend. Stop judging.