Thursday, November 20, 2014

Dear Single Mothers

Dear Single Mothers:

I want to say thank you for all the hard work you do with your children. I believe that it must be difficult to raise a child on your own, and that there are many sacrifices that you have to make in order to care for your children. This is admirable.

Now having said this, I do have an issue or two I would like to take up with you. And there are many of you who will be very angry with what I say. But I'm going to say it anyway.

The first issue is the work place. Do you all really think it is fair for you to start a job and demand a better work schedule than individuals who have worked there much longer than you. And the simple reason an employer needs to provide this perfect schedule for you is because you have a child? I have heard this so many times over the years. Yes, I do believe employers need to work with you. I believe that they need to make reasonable efforts to cater to you and your responsibilities. But I believe the key word there is reasonable. It is reasonable for your co-workers to cover for you if on occasion your child is ill and you have to leave work early or miss a day of work. It is not reasonable for you to say that you are unable to work a shift on a rotated schedule because you have child care issues. Yes, you want the same pay as your co-workers, but you are not willing to do the same work as your co-workers. That is inconsiderate and selfish. Sorry it just is. Your co-workers may not have toddlers, but they do have parents, boyfriends, and friends who depend on them. These people are just as important as your toddler.

The second issue is disciplining your children. Trust me I do believe that it is difficult for single mothers. It is difficult for any mother. But I have observed many single mothers who are looking for other individuals to discipline their child. And I mean specifically they are looking for a boyfriend or spouse to discipline the child. It seems to me that you might be asking for trouble when you do this. Yes, they do need to help you, but they may not have the same ideas about how a child should act. That individual may believe that corporal punishment is okay, when you don't. Think about these things. Remember that bringing a boyfriend or new spouse into your child's life is a choice for you. It often isn't a choice the child is able to participate in. Most men are good, but there are some who aren't. It's your responsibility as a single parent to assure that your child is disciplined with the correct techniques that fit with your values.

I realize that there are those faithful followers who will say I am not being sympathetic to single mothers. I am sympathetic to them I believe that they do make unimaginable sacrifices. There are other faithful followers who will say I don't have the right to make statements about single mothers because I am not a single mother. I used to agree with that statement until one day a friend pointed out to me that I made all the right choices in not becoming a single parent, so I have just as much right as any single mother to voice my opinion. So I have. Single mothers I do value you, but keep in mind that all of us made choices in life. Your choice was to be a parent, and it's alright for you to expect for others to help you. It is alright for you to expect others to make some concessions on your behalf, but it is not alright to expect individuals to set limits on the concessions they make.

Music to blog by Modern Love by David Bowie
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