Tuesday, July 07, 2009

What Is Missing? Dads 

This article by Katie Powalski of the Orlando Sentinel, published in the St. Paul Pioneer Press (PP) talks about a survey by Babytalk Magazine. In summary, Katie's article states that "Babytalk Mag. found many married women feel it might sometimes be easier to go the mommy route, alone." Key reasons for their conclusions included: The idea of not fighting with a partner over the best way to raise a child; not having the chore of keeping up a healthy marriage (69%); not dealing with in-laws (30%). According to Ms Powalski, single moms agree, with two-thirds of unmarried moms feeling it would be harder to be a parent if there were a man in the house.

I tracked other information related to the survey. Powalski's article was a bit selective in what it emphasize. Ignored in the PP/Sentinel article is the following statement from the survey: " a whopping 81% of unmarried moms also agreed that "marriage is a sacred institution" and that "a child needs two parents." And 64% admitted that they "wish they were married." Other key points were omitted, including the fact that a number of the people interviewed were in long-term, live-in relationships with the father of their child. The filter process was at work.

My husband and I just saw the movie, Up., a delightful story about a curmudgeon who takes a fantastic adventure with a young boy whose father is missing. Without spoiling the plot, it is quite apparent that the boy wants a man in his life.

I have done it all: Career, postponed first marriage, had a son, divorced, remarried 11 years after the divorce. During my "single parent" stage (of 12 years or so), I did everything I could to provide my son with male models (our family was out of state, his dad moved to the east coast, but our son did visit him): Doctors, Boy Scouts, Big Brother, karate, male teachers. Kids, boys in particular, need men in their lives because they do NOT need to emulate females. I was very fortunate, my son's step-dad provided that visible male role model that he (and all kids) needed. My second husband was there for most of my son's high school years, college, and now, career.

My conclusion on the PP/Sentinel article is that it focused far too much on the mom - it's the kids who need to be the focus. Survey after survey find that kids simply do better with dad in the house.

KING ADDS: Mrs. S and I saw Up between my trips, and loved it. If you are a father of a son with whom you have a less-than-full relationship, watch this movie and get your resolve Up.

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Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day 

To all our readers and families, Happy Mother's Day! It's a beautiful day to celebrate!

Mother's Day was begun in 1912 by Anne Jarvis who selected the second Sunday in May to honor individual mothers (hence the singular possessive "Mother's") and trademarked the phrase "Mother's Day". President Wilson began to include the day in official documents. If you go here , you can read some of the history of the special day which is celebrated at different times of the year in other countries. While there are feminists who would like to abolish the holiday, many of us know women, now deceased, who would be considered feminists for their achievements. We also know that it was our moms who at some point in our lives made that tough call, made us do something we didn't want to do (clean our rooms??? or more), and were there when everything was heading south.

They showed us that we do not need to do everything alone, that there would be someone there to help.

Thank you mom, grandma.