Growing up without dad

Thirty-eight percent of American children are born out of wedlock, writes Juan Williams in the Wall Street Journal. Most grow up without a father’s love and guidance. Some 28 percent of white children, 50 percent of Hispanics and 71 percent of blacks are born to a single mother.

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, nearly a quarter of America’s white children (22%) do not have any male in their homes; nearly a third (31%) of Hispanic children and over half of black children (56%) are fatherless.

This represents a dramatic shift in American life. In the early 1960s, only 2.3% of white children and 24% of black children were born to a single mom. Having a dad, in short, is now a privilege, a ticket to middle-class status on par with getting into a good college.

The odds increase for a child’s success with the psychological and financial stability rooted in having two parents. Having two parents means there is a greater likelihood that someone will read to a child as a preschooler, support him through school, and prevent him from dropping out, as well as teaching him how to compete, win and lose and get up to try again, in academics, athletics and the arts. Maybe most important of all is that having a dad at home is almost a certain ticket out of poverty; because about 40% of single-mother families are in poverty.

Even in kindergarten, children from single-parent families lag behind classmates from two-parent families in health, cognitive skills and maturity, Williams writes .”They are in the back of the bus before the bus – their life – even gets going.”

Update: Barack Obama spoke movingly about his childhood longing for his absent father in a speech at a black church in Chicago.

“What makes you a man is not the ability to have a child. Any fool can have a child. That doesn’t make you a father. It’s the courage to raise a child that makes you a father.”

Mr. Obama spoke of the burden that single parenthood was on his mother, who raised him with the help of his maternal grandparents.

“I know the toll it took on me, not having a father in the house,” he continued. “The hole in your heart when you don’t have a male figure in the home who can guide you and lead you.”

In response to some of the comments: Children who grow up with two married parents do the best on measures of wellbeing; they also cope very well if a parent dies. Divorce hurts; acquiring a stepfather doesn’t help much. It’s better to be the child of divorce than the child of never-married parents: Divorced fathers are much more involved with their children than never-married fathers. Of course, there are plenty of exceptions, but this is what I heard from a researcher at a seminar on child poverty about 12 years ago.

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Comments

  1. There are many single-parent homes that work–always have been. Fathers have been lost in war, mothers have died in childbirth throughout history and somehow people have been okay.

    I wish that more writers and statisticians and social reformers would take a look at those single-parent homes that DO work and write about how and why, rather than focusing on the failures. Perhaps then, those who are in this situation would have an example of success rather than the nonstop stream of doomsayers’ words. We need to stop dreaming about this 50’s Beaver Cleaver attitude of what should be and deal with what is.

    My son is eight years old. He reads at a HS level, is an all-star pitcher, and is a compassionate, good person. I am a single mother since he was two years old. My son is NOT in the back of the bus. And I resent the people who insist that he should be there simply because his dad left us behind. That attitude is a huge part of the problem.

  2. McSwain–

    When I was 8 I read at a high school level, too. And I was raised by a single mom.

    And I would NEVER, EVER say that we should stop criticizing single parenthood.

    It was awful. Just awful. And my mother was incredibly wonderful, worked hard, we were never on welfare, and she ensured that I got a good education.

    But my life, compared to my children’s lives, was void of something vital. My kids have the security of a dad. My kids have far fewer emotional hangups than I did. And my kids are excelling in way more ways than I was, even though I went on to earn two Master’s degrees and am now relatively upper class.

    Sure there have always been single parent homes, but the research also shows that the cause of single parent homes results in different outcomes. In other words, in cases where the mother was widowed, the children do almost as well as from a two-parent family. But in cases where there was never a father, they do really badly. It’s the fact that they had a father who loved them, even if he didn’t have enough time with them, that matters.

    So single parent homes are not alike. I’m glad you’re raising your son well, and more power to you. My mother raised me well, too. But just because there can be single parent successes does not mean that we should stop saying that single parenthood is a problem. It is. You can’t get around the statistics. You can beat it on an individual basis, but not on a societal one.

    So we have to keep talking about this. The real divide in our society is not a class one; it is a marriage one. When we can acknowledge that, then maybe we can start getting to the root of some of these problems.

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  3. BadaBing says:

    Contrary to the opinion of Murphy Brown above, society should elevate the ideal rather than focus on the small minority of successful kids that grew up without a father. Nine times out of ten, I can spot the kids that come from broken homes in my classes, and they do not fare well socially or academically. Boys lack self-control, girls tend to be sexually promiscuous. And because of this phenomenon, society in general becomes ruder and cruder every year. The chickens of fifty years of liberalism are coming home to roost.

  4. Badabing,

    I am a very conservative Christian preacher’s kid, NOT a Murphy Brown. My point is not that we should not elevate the ideal. I wish I had the ideal, but I don’t. It was NOT my choice. My point is that the number of successful kids that grow up without a father is not necessarily a minority, and that rather than ONLY pointing out the problems, we need to look for solutions. Lots of solutions, not just “Dad should be around,” because frankly, in many cases, that is not going to happen. And we should NOT be condemning children from single parent homes to failure just because they are in single parent homes, and we should NOT be making assumptions about people who are having to raise their children alone, such as the one you made about me.

    Many of the kids from “broken homes” are easy to spot in my classes, too. And their success and easiness to spot seems to be more related to their parents’ attitudes than whether or not they are both in the picture.

    I once had a boss who said “Don’t bring me a problem unless you’re going to bring me a solution.” In this case, we’re told ONLY about the problem. What’s the viable solution? To start with, we need to teach the current generation to be unselfish persons of character. That right there would help stem the tide of disappearing fathers. Simplistic maybe, but it’s a start.

  5. I’m not sure there is any conflict between holding out the ideal of good fatherhood, and, at the same time, having respect for families without fathers. To say it is a good thing that children have a loving and reliable father is not to say it is essential in all cases.

  6. Andromeda says:

    I’m confused, because this post and article seem to be talking about “not having a father” and “having a single mother” as if they are the same thing. They’re not.

  7. greifer says:

    –Fathers have been lost in war, mothers have died in childbirth throughout history and somehow people have been okay.

    First, in history, when mom died in childbirth, a new mom arrived rather quickly. She was usually a sister to the mother who died, and she usually married the father of the children in short order. Not necessarily good, not necessarily happy, but a two parent family nonetheless. This is nothing like single women raising children without fathers.

    Second, in history, when dad died in war, a new dad arrived rather quickly. Whether that was a brother to the original, or a brother to the mom, or grandad, the father role was filled. And it was filled by someone who respected the sacrifice of the father and made DAMN sure to say how fantastic that father was, and how important it was to respect dad, even if he had died. This is nothing like single women raising children without fathers.

    Just because there are anecdotes showing that some single women manage to raise successful kids doesn’t mean a society that denigrates the role of fatherhood can survive. Looking through the lens of “what’s in it for me” isn’t a useful way to view society, or to analyze what’s good for it.

  8. Mrs. Davis says:

    McSwain, my hat’s off to you. Keep on with the good work, but recognize that you are the exception. I know that your son will live to appreciate your sacrifices and I hope you live to see that.

    1. There’s a big difference between a spouse dying, for whatever reason, and someone walking out on the other parent. One is a tragedy, the other is rejection. And the child usually feels responsible for the later but not the former. And the community comes out to support the survivor, but has to take sides in an abandonment.

    2. Historically, this situation has been dealt with by stigmatizing the child. This is unfair and I can’t imagine our society reverting to that. But we must find a way to stigmatize parents who abandon their responsibility and rewarding those who don’t.

    3. It’s time to abandon the no-fault divorce model. People need to expect that “till death do you part” means exactly that. And just as developers have to pay the community fees for public assets and services resulting from their development, the at fault parent should have to pay fees for the cost to the community of raising the child of their abandonment for them. Fully loaded. I’m tired of paying for the results of other people’s selfishness or immaturity.

  9. Nice of Juan to write this. Of course, if I wrote it, I would be a racist.

  10. Margo/Mom says:

    In the interest of full disclosure, I am a single parent. I started out that way–while I didn’t envision going the whole way alone, no one has ever showed up with sufficient interest in joining the family.

    There are all kinds of things that happen to families. My upper middle class, well educated parents were alcoholics. I got an education, and many other useful things. I also bear the scars of that upbringing. Each of my siblings had a unique way of dealing. Mine was to do really well in school to escape.

    Some wonderful two-parent families get hit with lost jobs or illness and death. Some get divorced. In some there is violence. Break-up hurts. It hurts less when parents are able to maintain respect for one another.

    Poverty hurts kids. Single parents, particularly when they are mothers, are more likely to have financial struggles–not guaranteed.

    I saw a lot of families before I decided to go on ahead with starting my own, on my own. One observation, among many of the kids I worked with–mostly low income–if I could bet on one thing to make a positive difference in their lives, it would be a mom with a job, not a mom with a dad. I saw a lot of single parent families that were doing OK.

    My basic feeling about single parenting is everybody talks about it, nobody wants to do anything about it. Anyone who wants to start a dating service for mom’s who think a special night is one is which someone else cooks and does dishes, please go ahead. And give me a call.

  11. Charles R. Williams says:

    Of course there are single parents that do well. The point is not to denigrate people who are trying their best. But single parenthood is not an arbitrary catastrophe that strikes a child like a bolt of lightning. The high percentage of children in single family homes is a consequence of changes in the culture and in family law. Parents are choosing what they think will lead to their own happiness at the expense of their children and the law facilitates this antisocial behavior. And the mass media fosters the illusion that this is just typical human tragedy.

  12. SuperSub says:

    As many have already mentioned, there are some fundamental differences between the causes of single parenthood, and yes, there are two-parent households that have their problems.
    Generally, though, a two parent household provides stability that benefits a child’s upbringing. Pregnancies are more likely to be planned or wanted, and a two parent household can better adapt to negative events like layoffs or medical issues.
    The other aspect that hasn’t been mentioned is the age of the parents. Many, if not most, of the single mothers are teens who are part of a culture that condones sex as a standard social interaction.

  13. Catch Thirty-Thr33 says:

    There are indeed single parents that do well, but by and large they are the exception…and let’s face it, isn’t it easier to have TWO parents?

    On two occasions I got a taste of what it would be like without a father: once when I was three, and once when I was thirteen. (Being an Army brat does this every so often.) No thanks.

  14. “It’s time to abandon the no-fault divorce model.”

    Indeed, although no-fault divorce is the symptom. What needs to change is the narcissism that has plagued our society since the 60s. Marriage is not about happiness or fulfillment. Marriage isn’t about you. Marriage is about the family. You sacrifice your interests for the good of the children. Period.

  15. Richard Aubrey says:

    The top fifteen kids at our high school (academically, plus as a sort of sideline they had a list of other activities as long as my arm) all came from two-parent families and their last names were the same as their parents’.
    The latter means there’s a good chance there was no divorce and remarriage, either.

  16. “McSwain, my hat’s off to you. Keep on with the good work, but recognize that you are the exception.”

    I assume there are some statistics that will support this claim?

  17. Elizabeth says:

    My grandfathers were raised by single moms (due to death). Their early lives were very hard. Both overcame poverty to become well-off. They both (1) worked harder than most, (2) consciously limited their family size, and (3) always made sure they had resources saved so my grandmothers would not have to live in dire poverty. Back then, your “Status” had to do with what you could do, not how much bling or street cred you had.

  18. Stacy in NJ says:

    Oh, come on folks, this is all about culture. Our underclass culture encourages and supports irresponsible procreation. It’s a cultural phenomenon of the last 4 decades. There have always been women and men left without a spouse, who have stuggled mightily to successfully raise their children. But, the pure numbers are now staggering. 51% of Hispanic and 71% of African American kids are fatherless, or near fatherless? This isn’t about the random woman who finds herself married to and abondoned by the worthless bum. It’s about droves of children without the necessary support to guide them through a very tempting and dangerours world.

  19. I recall reading some biographies of 19th century men. When a father died and remarriage was not an option the children were often farmed out to relatives and friends of the family. This was pretty common.

    I may be politically incorrect to give another contradictory example, but Robert E Lee’s father abandoned his family. I think he turned out okay.

  20. Cardinal Fang says:

    I posted this on the thread below, but I’ll copy it here: Barack Obama’s remarks on Fathers Day

    He comes down hard on absent fathers and parents who neglect their responsibilities.

  21. Yes, and as Katharine Lopez pointed out on NRO, Obama’s talk is cheap, unless he plans to back it up, which he will not.

  22. Stacy in NJ says, “This isn’t about the random woman who finds herself married to and abandoned by the worthless bum. It’s about droves of children without the necessary support to guide them through a very tempting and dangerous world.” I totally agree with this. She also says, “this is all about culture”. I think we would all agree with that. So what is this culture? It seems so foreign to me. What are they thinking? Stacy says it’s a phenomenon of the last four decades. Wouldn’t that pretty well place it with “welfare, as we knew it” from the Great Society of Lyndon Johnson to the massive change in welfare in 1996? Is this the key to the problem? The idea that welfare, AFDC in particular, imposed destructive incentives is not new.

    Another thought is that some of the ideals of the sixties, “let it all hang out”, “if it feels good, do it”, “Sock it to the man” have been a lot more corrosive than we might have realized.

    Is a form of misguided feminism involved? The phrase, “A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle” comes to mind. I can see some truth to that, but switch it around a bit and its limitations become apparent. Is it true that, “A man needs a woman like a fish needs a bicycle”? Is it true that “Anyone trying to raise kids needs a committed responsible partner like a fish needs a bicycle”?

    Could it be that in the culture we are talking about it is accepted conventional wisdom that a husband in the house is just one more kid to deal with, one more burden to bear? If so, what does that do to that last fish-bicycle statement? And if that is the case how in the world did the culture arrive at that state?

    Maybe we can blame progressive education. The pronouncements from Teacher’s College have not been too helpful for the last hundred years. Maybe they’ve been downright toxic to the culture. Progressive education doctrine is certainly anything but a coherent and developed philosophical system, but I think it is fair to say that it has always put a lot more emphasis on creativity, adjustment, and social ideals than on any sort of discipline or school-as-work or deferred gratification ideas.

    Maybe we can blame it all on Dr. Spock (not the one with the pointy ears).

    Maybe we can blame it all on advertising.

    But placing blame is not the ultimate goal. The ultimate goal is to got to a more healthy society. Placing blame, that is understanding just what people are thinking and where they got these thoughts, may help us get to that more healthy society.

    I am optimistic. People, and societies, do learn. They learn agonizingly slowly, they are brought kicking and screaming to the obvious conclusions they should have seen all along, but eventually they are brought there. They learn as a last resort when all else has failed. We may get hopelessly lost before we are willing to acknowledge the obvious, or read the instructions, or ask for directions, but eventually we do. Thank you, Cardinal Fang, for the link to Obama’s fathers day speech. He said the right things, mostly, and I am glad. A cynic may say he only said what the audience wants to hear, but that may be the most hopeful thing of all.

  23. Elizabeth says:

    Some of the vitrol of the Feminist Movement was a backlash against the 1960’s leftist/hippie misogyny- it was actually the radical men who first rebelled against responsibility, taking care of a family, and being “tied” to one woman. Pre-1960’s Feminism had more to do with correcting legal, educational and employment opportunities.

  24. Well, while placing blame may not solve a problem, if you can’t NAME a problem, you probably can’t solve it.

    The Baby Boomer narcissists and their intentional bringing of these attitudes into the world created this disaster. And just like most progressive and leftist ideals, it hurt the minorities and poor more than it hurt the upper class elites espousing the ideas in the first place.

    Elizabeth, whatever pre 60s feminism was, 60s Feminists were anti man, anti family, and anti anything but communism. They got what they wanted, social breakdown of the family and reliance on govt. We got screwed.

    Rightwingprof is right. “Marriage is not about happiness or fulfillment. Marriage isn’t about you. Marriage is about the family. You sacrifice your interests for the good of the children. Period.” Sadly, however, everything is about oneself now, and if it’s good for self, then it is Good for society. no longer is the question asked the other way around.

    Maybe when the boomers die off, it’ll change. Doubtful though. Heck, they may live forever, anyway.

  25. Ragnarok says:

    Mrs. Davis said:
    “It’s time to abandon the no-fault divorce model. People need to expect that “till death do you part” means exactly that. And just as developers have to pay the community fees for public assets and services resulting from their development, the at fault parent should have to pay fees for the cost to the community of raising the child of their abandonment for them. Fully loaded. I’m tired of paying for the results of other people’s selfishness or immaturity.”

    BRAVO!

    As for Mr. Obama, I notice that his “reform” consists mostly of legislation to further enforce child-support. What if the father *wants* more time with his kids, but the courts or the mother won’t allow it? What of the mindless tilt towards the mother, no matter how unfit?

    No, I doubt that Obama will produce anything more than hot air.

  26. SuperSub says:

    It’s funny watching pre-1990 movies with regards to their sexual innuendo… it’s all over the place, but many of the movies themselves aren’t about sex but about dating a guy/girl with the hopes of doing something much later in the future.
    Now, of course, many of the movies and TV shows stigmatize individuals who decide to wait a whole 3 dates before jumping in the sack.
    And back before the “free love” movement, holding hands in movies was risque.
    I’m not blaming media (at least not wholly) as it is mostly a reflection of our cultural standards. Teens and unmarried individuals who engaged in sex were highly stigmatized and it is the lack of that same social pressure that allows teens now to have sex and become unwed parents. I graduated in 1998 and I remember a girl who became pregnant and dropped out of school due to shame… now a student of mine is pregnant (as a sophomore) and the kids at school threw her a baby shower.
    The only true reform will come when someone prominent tells these single parents that they were boneheads to engage in sex and pulls government support out from under them… but I dare say that Obama will be last one to say this because they probably make up a large part of his voting base.

  27. Margo/Mom says:

    Supersub and others (Griefer, for instance), do not make the mistake of assuming that history is linear. When I was in high school girls got pregnant (I think that is something of a constant throughout history), but they disappeared. They went to visit a brother, cousin, aunt, whatever and then came back. Nobody talked about why they took their little vacation in the middle of the school year. Although, when I moved to a district in a smaller town, it was different. There when a girl got pregnant, she got married (unless the father to be was an athlete with a potential scholarship–getting married wasn’t allowed, but, you know…). My physics teacher was married to a former student.

    I guess I am too old to appreciate Supersub’s sense of nuance between the 90’s and now. But 70’s sexual behavior (influenced by “the pill” and all those health classes that taught that sex was wrong because you could get pregnant) was different from post AIDs behavior–for a while anyway. The film code that was prevalent in the 50’s was pre-dated by a more open set of values in earlier films. (Do you know, until I read the play, I thought that Blanche Dubois’ husband in Streetcar Named Desire killed himself because he wrote bad poetry?).

    All that said–I do not vote for a return to a time in which marriage was a finacial necessity for women because they were denied entry into the same fields as men, denied such things as bank credit and equal pay for the same job (we are still working on equal pay for equal work). So call me a destroyer of the family. But you might want to take a look at who it is raising the children and maintaining “family.” In my experience, it is overwhelmingly the women. And if someone wants to send a man my way, I am willing to take another stab at riding a bicycle.

  28. Cardinal Fang said, “I posted this on the thread below, but I’ll copy it here: Barack Obama’s remarks on Fathers Day. He comes down hard on absent fathers and parents who neglect their responsibilities.”

    Yes, he did. And then, he went on to recommend more government programs to take care of the fathers who live with their kids. Just what we need–more “assistance” from the governemnt that helped to create the problem in the first place.

    Obama, like most liberals, gives the same tired old solutions that haven’t yet worked.

  29. SuperSub says:

    Margo –
    Just to clarify… I understand that there has always been teenage pregnancy, but I was commenting that across the whole society it has become much more accepted as an inconvenient result of the “normal” act of sex amongst teens. This was an attempt to explain the large increase in single parentage today.

    That being said, increased divorce rates and women being able to support themselves financially have also caused an increase is single parentage, but I’d say their effects are minor compared to teenage pregnancy and that it is primarily teenage pregnancy that is to blame for a good part of these uncontrollable children.

    Perhaps I am wrong, but it seems as if you are taking criticism meant for a whole group of unresponsible single parents as an indictment of your own situation, which is an individual case and, from the sound of it, seems to be a positive environment for children.

  30. Elizabeth says:

    Greifer- the 60’s “feminism” was the female counterpart to the male-led 1960’s “sexual liberation” – i.e., a man should be able to have all the fun he wants w/out responsibilities – it was a nihilistic/commmunistic movement that had uniquely “male” and “female” counterparts. These worked in concert to destroy our traditional culture.

  31. Margo/Mom says:

    Supersub:

    I don’t know–peruse some of the following:

    “And I would NEVER, EVER say that we should stop criticizing single parenthood.”

    “And it was filled by someone who respected the sacrifice of the father and made DAMN sure to say how fantastic that father was, and how important it was to respect dad, even if he had died. This is nothing like single women raising children without fathers.”

    “Our underclass culture encourages and supports irresponsible procreation.”

    “whatever pre 60s feminism was, 60s Feminists were anti man, anti family, and anti anything but communism. They got what they wanted, social breakdown of the family and reliance on govt. We got screwed.”

    Seems like there’s an awful lot of painting with broad brushes going on. It’s not really helpful to say “well, I didn’t means you.” What would be helpful would be to really THINK about what people are advocating and who they are mad at–and whether the facts support their point of view. When I point out the exceptions, it is with the hope of spurring some willingness to look at whether the rules are holding true in the light of reality.

  32. The problem is you’re not pointing out exceptions; you’re presenting anecdotes as evidence. I had a cousin Julie, and she inherited a million dollars, and she didn’t like penises so she decided to raise a kid all by herself, and he turned out okay! So there!

    Sorry, but that’s crap. Individual cases say not a damned thing about the issue one way or another. Any issue, as far as that goes. See, cause somebody else had this cousin Jane, and she inherited a million dollars and raised a kid by herself and read “heather has two mommies” to him and he turned out to be a serial killer, but as least he wasn’t judgmental!

    And bringing in wages, etc., is nothing more than a strawman. These are separate issues, that bear not at all on the issue in discussion. But that’s always the strawman used, isn’t it? Oh, you want to go back to the fifties when men beat their wives!

    What crap.

  33. Ragnarok says:

    Margo/Mom wrote:

    “And if someone wants to send a man my way, I am willing to take another stab at riding a bicycle.”

    Apparently you chose to have a kid by yourself, to be a single parent, to deny your kid a chance to have a father. Sounds pretty selfish to me.

    And now you’re willing to give a man a chance if someone else sends one your way? Very kind of you.

  34. Margo/Mom says:

    Ragnarok:

    Well–actually, my kids are adopted. If you are familiar at all with how adoption works, single parents don’t get “healty white infants,” (unless they are much further up the economic food chain than I am). Some social workers are even able to say with a straight face that kids with multiple problems do better with single parents.

    So–there were not a bunch of married couples hanging around that I knocked out of line. In fact, the folks who make policy were originally willing to look at parents like me so that they could move more kids into permanent families. I have never considered myself to be opposed to being married (or being single). But it apparently matters a good deal to other people–so, yes, I say to them, bring on the matchmakers.

  35. Stacy in NJ says:

    Margo/Mom, I’m gonna have to agree with the rightwingprof on this. It’s not about YOU. Did you see? 53% of Hispanic kids and 71% of Black kids are fatherless. That’s terrible. Your trying to turn your personnal experience into a truism that relates to a larger social issue. It really doesn’t fit. Did you get pregnant as a teen? Have multiple children without an engaged husband and use welfare as your means of support? YOU are probably raising and loving the results of irresponsible baby making. And, Thank God for you.

    Obviously, not all fatherless children are born to teen welfare moms but a significant portion are. The question is, at least in my mind, how to convince these young women and men that being a parent is a deeply serious commitment. Welfare reform helped address the financial aspect of it, now we need to talk about the moral/social costs. Previously Bill Cosby, now Juan Williams and Barack Obama, are speaking of it within the black community. To me they seem incredibly timid. I think it’s an area that most white American won’t touch, at least in company. Ah, another 3rd rail in American politics. We knew all this way back when Daniel Patrick Moynehan wrote about in the, was it early 70’s?

  36. The plural of anecdote is data. The evidence is the evidence. We choose to ignore it at our peril.

  37. Margo/Mom says:

    Anon–the plural of anecdote is NOT data.

    Stacy–I am not advocating that my experience proves anything. I am countering some of the folks (like Ragnarok) who categorize single parents as a group–and me in particular–as “selfish,” and a bunch of other things.

    I gotta wonder–how come its the single moms who get the heat? Trust me, I have been doing this for a long time, and there have been no lack of teachers or others who are really angry at me because I am not the parent that they want me to be. I am not available to drop everything and run when I get a phone call. Because I am a professional person, I don’t fit neatly into a properly submissive role when the district wants to bulldoze me into believing some fiction about what it is that they want to do. I would rather donate cash than clip labels to raise money for playground equipment.

    Whether we like it or not–the face of parenting has changed dramatically. And having grown up with a stay at home mom who suffered all kinds of depression related ailments as a result of that suburban isolation, I am not sold on the idea that this is altogether a bad thing. Personally, I believe that I have provided a greater level of stability for my kids than others who have spent their time trying to regain a two-parent family after the first loser shoved off.

Trackbacks

  1. […] Juan Williams interesting essay in the Wall Street Journal on the sorry state of fatherhood (HT: Joanne Jacobs) in America.  Williams point was as familiar as it is depressing: an enormous number of children […]

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