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The Impact of Single Parent Families

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

There is a rising trend in families across the nation. The number of divorce proceedings initiated is mounting and it is timely to talk about the impact of families on the children and the institution of the family itself. By default, the absence of one parent in the family structure has a negative impact on the relationship between the parent and the child as well as their individual interactions with society as a whole. It is a sad fact that they have to deal with prejudice at work or in the community. The lower socio-economic persona that is attributed to them to make them a target of abuse and hardships which should not be present at all in the first place.

The picture does not become clearer with respect to the children. Several studies have pointed out both short-term and long-term effects of parenting. Children who lack the supervision of a male parent usually are prone to misdemeanor, drug addiction and rebellion. A daughter in the family is more likely to end up as a single mother herself after being exposed to such a situation at an early age. Hate may also develop among the children and could pose a threat in their relationships outside the family. The incidence of dropping out from school, smoking, committing crime and alcoholism may also become prevalent. Some studies even suggest that children born of single-parent families tend to end up being poor compared to those who have a stable two-parent family.

In a more recent study, it has been shown that better financial stance of a residential family may help lessen the negative impact of a single-parent family. The anti-social behavior of a child inside such a family will subside in due time and with no long-term effects if proper education and attention is given all the time. It seems that a parent would have to double his or her efforts to pay attention to the needs of the child, whether it is material or social in nature.

The bonds between the parent and child can also be strengthen in this circumstance because both parties are subjected to the same kind of stress and, therefore, they both share the same things they are going through. The responsibilities and challenges of living in a single-parent household necessarily would mean shared responsibilities among the remaining members. This creates a sense of pride in the work of each member and a consciousness that they have to contribute because their help is needed badly by the family. Experts have observed that children inside such families are able to mature early on because they are exposed to conflict, and depending upon their personality and upbringing, this can help them learn real world skills in mediation and diplomacy.

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