My feed

to access all these features


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:
Bottlecap · 08/09/2015 20:02

Census data? HMRC? FSM?

I'm not entirely certain, but I check a 'marital status' box several times a year on various government forms (mostly tax related).

SurlyCue · 08/09/2015 20:07

Yes i check "single" on forms. However it doesnt ask whether i was or wasnt married or whether i divorced or was widowed.

FSM arent just for lone parents. Couples on low income can be eligble too.

Not sure about census or HMRC.

I would really like to see the evidence for the claim that unmarried parents are far more likely to separate than married parents.

ladybug201 · 08/09/2015 20:12

how do single parents cope? I mean, how

You get on with it (I was widowed young and elicited not to remarry.)

Lurkedforever1 · 08/09/2015 20:12

Same as surly I'm rarely ill. I had a really bad do with d&v when dd was about 10months. I was up all night sat on the loo with my head in a bucket, but luckily by the time dd woke up the d part was mostly over. I threw dds nappy stuff down the stairs, bottom shuffled us both downstairs rather than risk fainting carrying her. Then spent the day dry heaving into a bucket and pinching myself to stay awake, and dragging myself across the floor to attend to dd. Which mainly involved giving her bread and butter to eat ( her fave), a nap on the rug, and nappy changes. House was pretty baby proof and stair gates shut. By early eve when I was getting close to serious dehydration and was close to passing out, neighbours were home from work, one minded dd till she went to sleep, and my friend came and took me to pharmacy to get something to stop the heaving so I could at least drink and for the dehydration. Took about a week to recover, but the worst part was first 24hrs.

Bottlecap · 08/09/2015 20:22

Surly I would guess that it's probably a matter of sampling. I'm aware that FSM is not for lone parents, but it's a primary barometer of childhood poverty in the UK so I would guess they mine the data.

Helpmeoutofthemaze · 08/09/2015 20:29

I don't think people hate single mums. Just a few gobby people write stupid stuff like about spending benefit money in town.

I know plenty of single mums. All lovely apart from one who is a thief, liar, manipulator. But it's not because she's a single mum, it's just because she is a horrid person.

fedupbutfine · 08/09/2015 22:17

In a sense, society is put under an uncomfortable obligation to pay for the needs of children whose mother cannot support them

sorry? single mothers don't support their children? single mothers expect society to pay for their children? what evidence of this do you have? how many single mothers have you surveyed who have said 'it's your responsibility to support my children?'

You remind me of the woman who once told me she too would love to be a teacher but she couldn't 'because I have a husband who works'. Confused

Bottlecap · 08/09/2015 22:28

In a sense, society is put under an uncomfortable obligation to pay for the needs of children whose mother cannot support them

Well, that's true. You will see this on MN all the time. I would be very interested to see if anyone thinks this is not the case.

car0line123 · 08/09/2015 22:46

I expect single mums to cope exactly the same way than married mums whose husband is away for work (for weeks at worst) or just can't take any time off from work!

What do you think? Just having a partner doesn't make life magically trouble free. You do get moral support, but that doesn't help when you don't have the strength to stand up and your hubby is not in the country.

MrsJorahMormont · 08/09/2015 22:46

helpmeout I have one like that as a tenant at the minute. Complete nightmare. She's the kind of person who puts LLs off letting to single mothers. I know 2 LLs who won't let to single parents because they've had such bad experiences (won't pay rent, houses trashed, won't leave). So maybe as others have said there is a subset of single parents who do fulfil all the prejudices people have and then when the Daily Mail spews hate everyone nods sagely and says, Oooh yeah, I know that type, that sounds like X. When actually they're just horrible people who happen to also be single parents but all single parents get tarred with the same brush because we instinctively filter the world through our own beliefs and experiences.

SurlyCue · 08/09/2015 22:55

Oh FGS caroline! No-one is saying other people dont have struggles too. I would hazard a guess that most partnered people have their partner at home for most of the time. (And i speak as a former forces partner whose partner left for a 6 month deployment when our son was 11 days old) it isnt a competition. I hate, hate when some people just cant resist letting single parents get a bit of praise for something (coping when sick) and have to get in with their "but but but theyre not so special 'cause X,Y and Z"

SurlyCue · 08/09/2015 23:03

mrsjorah my dad used to spout the same shite about single mothers (tramps as he called them Hmm) and how they destroy all the houses (in their pyjamas smoking and drinking of course) theyre given and run off leaving thousands of pounds of unpaid rent and damage.

And then i became one. A teenage one at that. And carried on working, (not in my pyjamas Wink) and ran my house like a palace and paid my rent on due date every month.

I wont say complete, but he had a real change of mindset after that. I actually overhead him advising a friend who was considering BTL that lone parents were nothing to worry about as a LL, ignore what you hear, theres plenty of good ones about.

He still talks shite about loads of other stuff but im glad hes seen the light on that issue at least.

UrbaneFox · 08/09/2015 23:12

Some women are scared of single mothers. People will rush to give what single mothers do the most negative interpretation possible.

It is depressing. But it sorts out the wheat from the chaff. There are some very shallow people in my home town who wouldn't have me in their glossy posse because I'm a single parent.

This thinking does still exist. I didn't marry my children's father because he wouldn't marry me.. I was a people pleaser, I didn't understand the repercussions of being a people pleaser. a 'giver' and a 'taker' often end up together. It's human.

so many rights are given to fathers, he'd no reason to get married. I had a low self-esteem. I am a different person now, but for people who managed to find a good partner to say that I oughtn't to have had children, it's really offensive. But I knwo that my children aren't "disadvantaed" because we split up. They had the privilege of being brought up in a home with no fighting and no sexism. Not all of my married friends' children have had the privilege tbh.

MrsJorahMormont · 08/09/2015 23:15

That's the thing Surly. If I were a single parent, I would pay the rent before I paid ANYTHING because a roof over our heads would be top priority. I would hazard a guess that 90% of single parents are the same. So in many ways it makes sense to say, yes take single parents, excellent tenants!

I just happen to have a stupid, feckless, entitled tenant who also happens to be a single parent. I know that rationally but tbh we're not always rational. I know the other 2 LLs who had a bad experience will never let to a single mother again.

UrbaneFox · 08/09/2015 23:16

"In a sense, society is put under an uncomfortable obligation to pay for the needs of children whose mother cannot support them"

Even if this is true, why is the judgement directed at the mothers? why not the fathers? and why do sahms in receipt FIS escape (totally escape) notice and judgement?!

My x wasn't forthcoming with maintenance, I had to go to court twice, but he has paid an awful lot of tax (as have I) and at one point he was a "deadbeat dad" on 90k a year. so if anybody had said this to me they would have been shredded.

UrbaneFox · 08/09/2015 23:19

unless a married mother earns enough on her own that she could fund rent or mortgage, pay childcare and pay bills with no help from the state, then she has no business judging a single parent. It is fugly and hypocritical

dementedDementor · 08/09/2015 23:25

Single mums - shit
Single dads - amazing
SAHMs - don't pay their way
SAHDs - selflessly allowing their partners to pursue their career
WOHMs - selfish
WOHDs - providing for their families

Yep exactly. My pil's recently were talking about how their other son's wife (a sahm) is 'spending all his money' and 'does nothing'. Yet not so long ago were telling my dp to not let me go back to work full time because it would be unfair on our dd and we 'don't want her going to a nanny'.

I have heard them ranting on about single, teenage mothers in the past. They seem to forget my mum was a single mother who worked bloody long hours too.

SurlyCue · 08/09/2015 23:31

Yes thats just it jorah, your tenant would probably be just as bad a tenant if they were married. My marital status has no impact on how tidymy house or pay ing my rent. In fact its tidier now exp has gone as he was a lazy bugger. Also i do know some married couples who if you were their landlord cry at th state of their houses. Kim and aggie jobs.

dementedDementor · 08/09/2015 23:32

SurlyCue I like the story about your dad. It's nice to hear something like that.

MrsJorahMormont · 08/09/2015 23:32

Urbane I cannot understand the mentality of a man who refuses to provide for his own children. I truthfully cannot imagine myself into the mind of someone who can walk away from their own children without a backward glance, especially one earning a really good salary Sad

MrsJorahMormont · 08/09/2015 23:34

Surly I was a bit of a Kim and Aggie job myself tbh - moreso before I was married ironically. If I ever end up alone they'll find me buried under mountains of books half eaten by cats Wink

SurlyCue · 08/09/2015 23:37

I cannot understand the mentality of a man who refuses to provide for his own children.

Well EXp's mentality was "the government give you money for the child, you just want to have your cake and eat it" he genuinely thoughy that whatever extra i got in tax credits and Child benefit meant his share was covered.

UrbaneFox · 08/09/2015 23:39

ps @ cruikshank and fedup, I know exactly what you mean about the questioning to try and figure out HOW much they need to judge and pity you!

And yes, something akin to pity for the x paying maintenance as well! Appalling, their husbands share the financial sacrifice for having had children, but they feel single mothers ought to shoulder the financial sacrifice alone!?

Or, that it is not feminist to want financial support for children that are half his.

For a long time, I never said anything about my x up at the school, because he made me feel I was the enemy, that we were at war. But now that things have calmed down, I know I have said things about him (positive things) not because I think well of him or admire him but to rip apart lazy judgemental people's narratives about me/us (my kids, my x).

Lurkedforever1 · 08/09/2015 23:40

bottle true to a degree. Just like society is under the obligation to provide support to any vulnerable group. I actually think that's kind of the whole point of society in the first place.
Its like when nice married women have babies that require a bit more from conception onwards than a community midwife, and yet they use the nhs. Society is obliged to take up the burden because they can't provide for their own children.

Or when nice married people have dc, placing an unfair burden on society to support those kids in state schools, because they can't support their own kids.

Or when a nice married person has a disability, or their dc does, placing an obligation on society to support them because they can't do it themselves.

Or when pensioners haven't got private pensions, obliging society to support them.

Nice married people who can't get well paid jobs, leaving society with the burden of support.

You get the picture? I don't think it's remotely fair to say it about single mums, when it's not trotted out about any other group that places an 'obligation' on society.

UrbaneFox · 08/09/2015 23:41

mrsjorahMormont, he pays now. I think he feels better about himself now. He can hold his head up now. My mother pointed this out to him as he walked out of court looking like he'd taken a beating with a baseball bat. She walked up to him like she was congratulating him and said 'great news, you can hold up your head now'' and he must have decided, right, guess I've no choice but to play that role then.

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.