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What Does It Mean To Be A Single Parent?

2034 words - 8 pages


What does it mean to be a single parent? Many have his or her own opinion about what it means to be a single parent, but being a single parent means that it is now the job of one parent to be both mother and father to their children. Many debate on how children in single parent homes are affected. Some believe that children in single parent households are more at risk than children in a two parent households, but that outcome may vary depending on many different situations.
For the past twenty years single-parent families have become more common than the nuclear family that normally consist of a mother, father, and children. Now there are households headed by a single mother or a single father or sometimes other relatives. One leading cause of single parent households are unintended pregnancies. Unintended pregnancies make up almost thirty-seven percent of births in the United States.
Doctors say whether a baby is planned or not has important consequences for the health of the mother and the child. Mothers who have unplanned pregnancies are more likely to get little to no prenatal care, smoke cigarettes during their pregnancy and to decline to breastfeed, a practice known to have health benefits for mother and baby. Unintended babies also tend to have lower birth weight.

These unintended pregnancies especially in teens can lead to the father leaving and deciding not to be a part of the child’s life.
The popularity of marriage has fallen as the proportion of single women aged eighteen to forty-nine who have never married has doubled. The proportion of women of the same age who live with a partner, but are not married, has tripled from just 11 per cent to 34 per cent.
The U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplements found that:
Sixty-four percent of children ages 0–17 lived with two married parents in 2012, down from 77 percent in 1980. In 2012, 24 percent of children lived with only their mothers, 4 percent lived with only their fathers, and 4 percent lived with neither of their parents. Seventy-four percent of White, non-Hispanic, 59 percent of Hispanic, and 33 percent of Black children lived with two married parents in 2012. The proportion of Hispanic children living with two married parents decreased from 75 percent in 1980 to 59 percent in 2012.
The US Department Of Health/Census found that sixty-three percent of youth suicides are from fatherless homes. Ninety percent of all homeless and runaway children are fatherless homes. The Center for Disease Control found that eighty percent of all children who show behavior disorders come from fatherless homes. The Justice and Behavior found majority of rapist with anger issues come from fatherless homes. The National Principals Association Report showed that seventy percent of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes.
New research has shown that children whose parents divorced when they we young have a hard time creating a close...

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