The contemporary myth prevalent to North American society that has most shaped my values, practices and worldview is the single parent myth. There are a number of myths in North America pertaining to single parents such as: Children from single-parent families have emotional and behavior problems and do poorly in school, being brought up in single-parent families is detrimental to childrens self-esteem, children from single parent homes are less likely to succeed both socially and economically. This paper will address the myth that children from single parent homes are less likely to succeed both socially and economically.
Single parent homes have long been criticized for the negative effects they have on children. However, single parent homes are no more broken than families with two parents. The definition of broken is, to impair or weaken the power, effect, or intensity of (Websters Dictionary, 2003, p.33). If single parent families were indeed broken, does this mean children would be powerless to succeed in life, suffer a negative effect on their future relationships and experience less intensity in their parents love? Children are not doomed to an unsuccessful, lonely and loveless life, simply because they were raised in a home with a single parent.
A child will not fail to succeed because he or she was raised with a single parent. Being a successful parent is more than providing food, shelter, and clothing. Teaching a child to make good decisions at home, school, and social situations is vital in their developmental process. These developmental teachings do not require both parents, just consistency.
Single parents have raised many well-rounded, successful people. Many negative predictions for children raised by a single parent have more to do with economic hardship than the lack of one parent. With hard work, love, positive discipline and good parenting skills, single parents can raise capable, content, and successful children. Many successful celebrities such as Audrey Hepburn, whose parents were divorced when she was very young, rose to very high success (Jackson). Oprah Winfrey, an acclaimed actress and successful talk show host was also raised in a single parent family (Walker). J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter Series, was a single parent and managed to rise to success in order to provide a stable life for her child (Rowling). The lists of successful single parent families are endless.
Oftentimes society says that children of single parent homes are unable to sustain healthy relationships later in life. However, recent study of over 6,000 adults directly contradicts this prejudice showing that 43% of children from a single parent home are now...