Single parents are the parents who raise a family without the help of the other parent. It could be a lone father or a lone-mother. Single parenthood comes about in various ways; some decided to be single parents, especially those women who have no mind married, but want to have kids, some came about due to the death of one parent or divorce, and others are teen-mothers.
Children in this single parent homes are affected greatly, as opposed to those living in a two-parent home, there are both positive and negative features of the single parent families.
Living in a single parent home is not an easy task, but it also has some benefits, especially, if prior to the single parent home there was a conflict between the two parents that led to divorce. A change from the two-parent home to single parent home will reduce the tension and hostility that was brought about by the conflicts and the fights between the two parents, this will lead to an increase in solidarity and family consistency when the tension has been reduced.
The conflicts may take a toll on the kids, as the parents may ignore the kid’s emotional needs, and the children may feel unnoticed, the parents may also fail to secure rules and regulations at home that will help guide the children. When that tension is gone, the single parent can now enforce the rules and concentrate more on the children’s needs.
Secondly, there is a lot of flexibility when it comes to the single parent homes in planning time. When two parents are involved, one parent will be distracted by the expectations and time demands of the other, hence, there is inflexibility, but when one is a single parent, there is greater flexibility to spend time with each of his/her children.
In a single parent home set up, the young people feel more needed and valued, since here the single parent cannot tackle the major responsibilities by him/herself, hence will need help from their child. This makes the children have a greater sense of personal responsibility and self-esteem. In this type of household, the girls and boys do not view roles in terms of gender on which gender is supposed to do what, and hence, you find boys doing house chores that are perceived to be for women and vice versa.
Nancy, D. cites that single fathers have to synchronize work and home-making, and this brings a whole definition of fatherhood. The single fathers are able to really understand their young ones and get more engaged in their lives, as opposed to most fathers in a two-parent family structure.
The interdependency could be developed in a single parent home. A single parent will require cooperation with his children, in order for the household to work better. Also they would initiate a working together approach to the problem solving, and all these could lead to interdependency in a single family set up.
Single family homes can also have a negative impact on the children that are raised in them.
First and foremost, the financial status of the family may decline, if a previously married will affect the children’s basic needs, as most of them depend on the financial curve. Financial problems can cause a lot of strain in the family for both the parent and the child, because the kids may not get what they want and even access better education systems.
Some single parents alienate themselves from others in the society, and they take the children with them in their alienation, and this may affect the children greatly, while they are growing up. This may lead to a low self-esteem and poor social skills.
Both the children and the single parent may lose their psychological strength, since the single parent has put up with a lot of pressures of being a single parent and not spending as much time as they wanted to with their kids, besides, children may feel left out and start acting out.
It matters whether it is a male or female-headed household. This is because statistics show that most single women get low paying jobs, hence, they face all the problems that low-income families face on top of the raising children by themselves, and hence, have to work longer hours. This means less time spent with their children, but on a positive note, single mothers are nurturing, as opposed to their male counterparts; they tell their kids that they love them and they hug their kids, hence, they have a more extensive support system. Women are mostly closer to friends and extended families who can help them in raising their children, and also when going through a difficult time.
Single-fathers, on the other hand, usually have a well-paid job, hence, finances are not a problem, but they have a problem, when it comes to communicating with their children, as opposed to the single mothers, and this leads to the lone-father families having children who have taken drugs, alcohol or were engaged in early sex.
Factors, such as; finances, races, age, geography and extended family support influence the success of the single family home in a number of ways, and it is upon the members of the single parent households to determine the success or failure of their family.
Finances affect the success of the single family homes in that where there is a high income, and finance is the least of the single parent’s worries, the single-parent home can survive, as more emphasis is put on their quality education, and the parent can spend more quality time with his/her children.
Race also has some effect, as statistics show that more blacks than whites have single-parent family units. Age is also another factor; in that a young single parent may have trouble raising a kid by himself/herself, as they have a lot of challenges, in terms of finances, and even getting a job because of their age. They may also have limited education, as they didn’t get to finish school, and this could bring a great problem on the proper way to raise a kid, and the children brought up by a young single parent may have trouble respecting other people and poor personal responsibility, due to their inexperienced upbringing.
Extended family support also influences a great deal on the success of single parent homes. A good extended family support will help raise the children of a single parent, and this will make the children well nurtured and taken care of, this leads to children with a good moral and societal sense. A good extended family support also eases the pressures put upon the single parent, and this makes the single parent be more focused on parenting and taking care of his/her children, hence, a successful single family home.
Even though family with two parents has been discovered to provide good growing environment for kids to grow up, if only both parents are not abusive to their children; both physical and mental violation activities to children from single parents home may have stable growing environment, if the single parent is financially stable and can take care of all issues affecting his or her child. All in all, the success of a single family household depends entirely on the determination, and will of the parent and children involved, and a positive environment without negative criticism, and stereotyping of single parenthood.