What is single parenting?

A family is consists of father, mother, and child or children. The father plays the provider while the mother plays the nurturer of a family. But there are situations when one parent plays both the nurturer and the provider alone. It is a tough role but nowadays, single parenting is common and already acceptable in our society.

Single parenting defined

Single parenting is the practice of nurturing and raising your children without another adult equally involved in the process. In the United States alone, there are about 15 million single parents. Large percentage of these is composed of divorced or unmarried women, widows/widowers, surrogate mothers, or adopters. Women single parents are common than men. Throughout the world, single parenthood is more prevalent in the Western than Asian countries.

The difference between single-parent “family” and single-parent “household”

The practice of single parenting can be a single-parent “family” or single-parent “household.” A single parent family is when there is only one parent and the other parent is completely out of the child’s life. It can be through death, sperm donation, complete abandonment of one parent, or no contact is ever made with the other parent. On the other hand, a single-parent household is when one parent has primary custody of the child or children but the other parent not living in the house is still part of the child’s family. A divorce case where the mother has the primary physical custody of the child is one example of a single-parent household.

According to a study by Rodgers in 1996, prevalence of single-parent “family” cases in the United States are caused by the changing social and cultural trends, presence of welfare benefits that allows women to set up their own households, higher rates of divorce and non marital childbearing, higher employment opportunities for women, and, lower employment opportunities for men.

Single mother by choice is a case of single-parent “family”

Single mother by choice is an option for women who want to practice single parenting. A popular example of a woman who choose single mother by choice is Academy Award-winning actress Jodi Foster. She is a proud parent of two children and without a husband. She believes that women like her have the viable option of single-parent “family.” Single mother by choice is an option to women who are dedicated to motherhood, politically aware of their choice, financially responsible and mature.  An organization for women who want to raise children of their own and who may want to marry and not to marry is Single Mothers by Choice. They can be reached through the website: singlemothersbychoice.com.

Single Parenting (Mother-only and Father-only cases)

According to figures, vast majority of single parenting cases are female-headed. Male-headed single parenting cases are commonly as a result of widowhood or mother refusing custody. In case of divorce, a father increases their chances of winning custody when they pay child support or when the children are older and chooses the father. However, both male and female agree that regardless of sex single parenting is a challenging family option.

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