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Single Black Mothers: Child Rearing and Socialization

Essay by   •  July 4, 2012  •  Research Paper  •  1,466 Words (6 Pages)  •  1,818 Views

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Families, Delinquency and Crime

Single Black Mothers: Child Rearing and Socialization

Thesis statement: Single black mothers have numerous risks for a depressed fate, but with appropriate assistance, their futures can be full of positive outcomes.

Single black mothers are faced with various adversities. They are disproportionately in lower income brackets, uneducated, younger and have little or no support from their baby fathers. Many of these women also have come from dysfunctional, fragile homes with the same cycle of growing up fatherless or in a home with maybe a father figure that was less than desirable or in and out of the home momentarily. The future might seem depressing for those outside looking in but there is hope for them with available outreach programs, family support and other outlets for these women. Single black mothers are not a lost cause or an issue to sweep underneath a rug. They are important and their problems do not need to be put on the backburner for their issues, or also part of our society and every child needs to be socialized including their offspring.

Black children have a higher chance of being born in a single parent home as compared to whites, Hispanics and Asians. To explain the increases in the number of single-parent families, the study gave specific attention to racial, ethnic, and social class differences, as well as to changes in norms and values about family formation (Murray, Bynum, Brody et.al.). Some of these young women or even more stabilized older women might have dealt with a man who did not want to take responsibilities or in other cases a woman might see fit that she can raise a child on her own without the help or financial backing from the child's father. But as in the case of many single black mothers, this is not the case, they are seeking the love and emotional support from their significant others and the existence of these men are often times nonexistent. These women are left to be both the mother and father and at times the role of being both can be overwhelming and stressful. Monetary issues and the void of a missing companion can have detrimental effects on these already delicate women.

Therefore, even though family income may account for some of the marital status effect, this model predicts that marital status will relate to the psychological health of African American mothers over and above their financial resources. The cultural equivalent perspective also suggests that unmarried African American mothers, like other unmarried mothers, are at risk for mental health problems, but the effects are mainly attributable to the significant differences in family income between unmarried and married mothers. Also the Census Bureau in 2007 reported that more than 51% percent of black children were product of single parent homes ( Spjeldnes and Choi). For instance, in 2004, 28.4% of single-mother families lived below the poverty line compared to only 5.5% of married couple families (Mandara, Johnson, et.al.). This theory simply suggests that the being married does help with financial stability, relieving some of the anxiety and unease that comes with being a single parent having to maintain a household on a sole income.

Another issue that correlates with single black mother and single mothers in general is that many of these women do not get to spend as much time with their children as married women. This is self-explanatory for many women have all of the bulk of the financial responsibilities falling on them, so they have to work more to provide just the basic needs for her children. And to go further into this discussion, Sarah M. Kendig and Suzanne M. Bianchi, and their study "Single, Cohabitation, and Married Mother's time" they explained that maternal education and education play a big role in how much time the child spends with their children because one with more education and more money could alter their destiny with a better full time job verses a mother with inconsistent employment that many single mothers without formal education and more income can provide.

Single mothers as explained earlier, might have come from a home that was inconsistent and without a father figure. The support that they might need from their own mothers for help and guidance is low because their mothers might be even still young themselves and are still in unreliable situations that could put their children at risk. Single mothers need extra assistance for their available sources are lower because of the area that they live in and that their emotional stability

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