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to ask why society hates single mums?

309 replies

maxxytoe · 06/09/2015 13:30

Just why?
I very rarely see the press mention anything about single mums in a good way , it's always vilifying them for being single , on benefits etc
Even on facebook people I know (who have been raised by single mums may I add Hmm ) do status' saying something along the lines of 'the single mums will be out spending the child benefit in town tonight' Hmm

There's a guy at my work who got custody of his children and people cant praise him enough and say how he's doing a great job etc
But yet my colleague who is a single mum doesn't get the same ?

What is societies problem with single mums?!

OP posts:
spanisharmada · 06/09/2015 14:12

Sadly iI agree with oneday

cruikshank · 06/09/2015 14:14

I think it's just good old-fashioned misogyny - a combination of - my God, those women have had sex and the kid is proof, but they're single, which means they're going to eat some unsuspecting guy's cock, who might be married. They're out of control. Plus - fuck me, they're earning their own money, they really don't need us at all, this is truly unacceptable.

Interesting that you get the judgement from men and women though. I've often had people especially mums at school (like I'm going to blart out my relationship history to you while checking for pe kit, you fucker) try to work out if I was a 'worthy' single parent - questions about how long I was with my ex for, who left who, am I a victim and therefore obv not a threat but rather deserving of pity etc. People phrase it in different ways, but loads of them feel the need to fit you into a narrative. It's tiresome.

SurlyCue · 06/09/2015 14:15

For example i have ways rented since my DC were born, i reduced my hours at work to part time and have never been earning enough to save for a mortgage. Renting has limited where i can live and so exposes my DC to some of the elements of society i would rather they werent around.

Their dad however has been free to work all the hours he likes and pay no childcare costs so was able to buy a very nice house in a very nice area a couple of years ago. Had we still been together we wouldnt be sharing the benefits of a two income household, childcare etc and i very much doubt would be living in rented accomodation where i am now. If as teens my DC do end up in something they shouldnt be involved in i think its fair to say the absence of their father in their home on a purely financial never mind emotional level will have been a contributing factor.

MrsGentlyBenevolent · 06/09/2015 14:18

I get cross when people like this try and justify themselves with "oh but a child needs a man around". Well yes, it would be great if a child could have a dad in their life, but it doesn't mean he needs to be with the mum to help raise the child if it makes both adults unhappy. Some (mostly dads) just chose to walk away, it's either all or nothing. My own father chose to do this anyway, what was my mother suppose to do? Just find any old bloke to play dad? Single parenthood must be tough, no one can "imagine" doing it. However, whether by choice or through circumstance, it happens - and it's not the end of the world. People of both sexes cope with raising kids alone, heck even those in a relationship - if your partner is in the army, are you not basically a single parent anyway? I cannot see how it is up for 'judgement' in this day and age, agaisnt women at least. Or extra praise for the blokes who do it alone. There are only two types of parents in this world as far as I'm concered, bad ones and ones who just get on with it, no praise needed

godsavethequeeeen · 06/09/2015 14:23

I've not had any negativity from other people, but lots from the government who keep doing things to make my life harder.

The logistics of everyday life are harder though and it's easy to be isolated and exhausted. Work doesn't always stimulate and allow you to talk to adults and lots of us never get a night off.

maxxytoe · 06/09/2015 14:27

My sons dad takes him out for 5 hours on a Sunday and all I ever hear is how great he is for giving me a break Hmm

Never hear how great I am bringing a child up single handed , with no financial or emotional help from the father !
But he buys him a couple of sweets and a fruit shoot and he's dad of the year Angry

OP posts:
Emjones88 · 06/09/2015 14:36

To add another slant. I talk about my 8 year old step son as he is my own. Just always have. Only if the conversation requires it does the fact he is my step son come up. He knows so it nothing to do with that just I see no need to clarify generally. To me family is about love and trust not blood lines necessarily.

Anyway, people often look confused when I say my son is 8 and they state "You don't look old enough to have an 8 and half yr old" some even asking how old I am (I'm 25) When or if they find out he's my step son who I have raised since 6months as his mother didn't want to know and me and his dad did, I suddenly go from( and I can tell by their "oh's") slut to hero in a sentence.

Why wouldn't a biological 17yr old mother and 22yr old dad deserve the same praise and affection as we suddenly get once people know a back story?

CookieMonsterIsOnADiet · 06/09/2015 14:37

I don't think any parent deserves praise as such just for being a parent, whether married or single.

I think the media plays a part as they portray most as being on benefits or having delinquent children. The sad fact is many will be costing the state rather than supporting themselves so they will naturally get a bad press. You do hear the odd success story of successful career woman who juggles that with parenthood.

VaviaVive · 06/09/2015 14:41

I wonder who gets the most asbos: MALE children or FEMALE children?

Who's the REAL problem?

SurlyCue · 06/09/2015 14:42

The sad fact is many will be costing the state rather than supporting themselves

This would be solved if the state actually made parents meet the needs of their children rather than them thinking theyre a saint for paying minimum child support.

damselinthisdress · 06/09/2015 14:44

I see lots of comments like this on FB and Twitter from young men I have grown up with who were also often raised by single mums.

The majority of "ordinary" people probably don't think like this, but those easily influenced by the media (and I know lots of those!) seem to. They are the types who think they're super-intelligent so can't acknowledge the fact that they are literally paraphrasing DM headlines most of the time, but also shun the media when it suits them - "How dare they talk about young men from council estates, we are GOOD PEOPLE" type of thing.

sakura · 06/09/2015 14:50

Can't really add to what has already been said.

I had to laugh at the post about mums at the school gate trying to work out what kind of single mum you are.

It brings out the worst misogyny in people, doesn't it? It's absolutely connected to the idea that women are for men, so if a woman is on her own then what on earth is she for^ ...

The only place I would say being unpartnered is an asset is possibly the workplace, but only in terms of general attitude towards you as a person, not in terms of practical help. There is a grudging respect from men in the workplace, from what I have experienced.

A couple of gay guys on my team at work asked me if I'd "seen anyone I liked the look of in the workplace"? I replied I was happily single and intended to remain so.

It seems it would be less of a taboo for me to be miserable about being a single mum and searching for someone to fill the gap. When I make it clear I am fulfilled just the way things are it causes confusion. It seems that they want you to have a man, any man at all, but please stop parading your independence around the place...

TheStoic · 06/09/2015 14:59

You do hear the odd success story of successful career woman who juggles that with parenthood.

It's 'odd' because most single mothers don't have the luxury of being able to devote enough time to their career. And if they did, they'd be labelled selfish anyway.

3CheekyLittleMonkeys · 06/09/2015 15:03

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

antimatter · 06/09/2015 15:06

I think I would not say society, in your post OP you say press and I would stick to that.

Press doesn't represent society only editors of that paper.

SurlyCue · 06/09/2015 15:14

Oh cheeky you little shitstirrer you! Grin

Osolea · 06/09/2015 16:43

I'm a single mum for the second time now. I was single when my dc were very small, and now that they're teenagers I'm widowed. I have never experienced any negativity for my position and I've never felt vilified by the press or anything like that. But I've never been out of work and have always supported myself and my children.

I don't think society has a problem with single mums at all, I think it has a problem with people who are healthy enough to work yet expect the state to support them without even trying to work part time. Which is fair enough really.

goblinhat · 06/09/2015 16:50

I don't think society hates single Mums at all.

Sometimes gutter press vilifies an easy target, but I don't think the majority of us buy it for a second.

I have read crap in crap newspapers, but I don't come across this kind of judgement in real life.

fedupbutfine · 06/09/2015 17:03

I don't think society has a problem with single mums at all, I think it has a problem with people who are healthy enough to work yet expect the state to support them without even trying to work part time

so why do single mums experience the playground inquisition (I have had it countless times, makes me want to pull my own eyes out and eat them), if people don't have a problem with us? As a mum with a ring on my finger, no one ever said a word to me. As a mum without a ring on my finger, I am constantly bullied (because it is bullying) into explaining my very existence and if I resist, the gaps will be incorrectly filled in and I'm damned anyway. Single parents are seen as everyone's business.

I have yet to come across a single parent who 'expects the state to support them'. I have come across many single parents who struggle to hold down a job because you can't look after 3 children who get sick twice a year for a few days at a time and retain your employment.

It's 'odd' because most single mothers don't have the luxury of being able to devote enough time to their career. And if they did, they'd be labelled selfish anyway

Ah yes, the dilemma...
....don't work, you're a 'scrounger'. Poor ex husband, having to pay maintenance. part-time, you're less of a 'scrounger', but as you're healthy and capable of full-time work (bar the childcare issue, and the logistics of having 3 children in 3 different settings and you in a 4th etc. etc. ), you're a 'scrounger' nonetheless. Poor ex husband having to pay maintenance. full-time and it's 'what did you have children for if you weren't going to bother looking after them? Poor, lost souls, in childcare ALL day'. Greedy bitch, asking for maintenance from that poor, hard-working ex husband.

Fuck off. Just fuck off.

Osolea · 06/09/2015 17:16

I have no idea fedup, because it's not something I ever experienced when my dc were starting school and I was meeting new mums without a ring on my finger. I've never been aware of being labeled selfish for working either, nor have I ever known of any NRP being labelled as 'poor' for having to pay maintenance. That is just bonkers.

Andrewofgg · 06/09/2015 17:30

Shiningdew You say Single fathers are unusual. Many will be widows rather than divorcees - Single fathers who are WIDOWS must be very unusual indeed.

Those who are WIDOWERS - less so Smile.

DS had a school friend who had been brought up by his father since his mother died giving birth to his brother when he was three. The brother survived so there they were, a household of three males. By the time I met them (when the boys were 13 and 10) the father was very much "first among equals" - it was an interesting household.

JuJuMun69 · 06/09/2015 17:34

Ive never come across it. Im a single mum and alls fine. But then again I was 35 when I had my son.

fedupbutfine · 06/09/2015 17:37

poor as in what a shame

not poor as in no money

does that make a difference?! I guess it reads both ways!

Osolea · 06/09/2015 17:49

I read it they way you meant it, so no, it doesn't make a difference. Our of all of the things you said you've experienced I found that one the most bizarre tbh, I thought everyone would expect a non resident dad to pay for their children and if anything, it would be the resident mothers that would have less expected of them financially. That's by far the most common impression I've got.

FayKorgasm · 06/09/2015 17:59

I read once that men get the better deal from marriage than women. I think it's the fact that women do not need to be living with a man to be a mother,that scares them.

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