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The year 2009 reported that more than half of the children, born to mothers under the age of 30, were single women. Recent statistics indicate that single women with children have become the recent norm. In the past, the society was not uncommonly accommodative of single or unmarried women with children and, hence, most ended up in marriage. However, the statistics, indicating the rise in single women with children in the society, is an indication of the society’s acceptance of the practice (Hays, 2003). In most societies and in the United States, unmarried mothers have increased in number, hence, being accepted without stigmatization or discrimination. This research paper seeks to explore the subject of single women with children. In the current society, this is an intriguing subject as people come to terms with the change in the family setting. The most intriguing part of this subject is the notion of marriage amongst the single mothers. The paper will explore the different mind setting unmarried mothers have on marriage. In discussing this subject, the paper will also provide recent statistics on the single women with children, the notable differences in these statistics with the previous years. In addition, study paper will analyze the causes and consequences of single women with children in the society.
Discussion and Statistics
Marriage, in the present times, has become a luxury, righteousness, and so has family. The past society regarded marriage and family with high esteem to the extent that children born out of wedlock were termed as illegitimate. The past five decades have seen the steady rise of children born to unmarried women cross the threshold. Statistics show that more than half of children in America have single parents who are mostly their mothers. This trend is on the rise amongst women under the age of 30. The ideology of unmarried mothers was mainly related to poor women and the minorities of the United States. This has rapidly changed with reports indicating that the norm is now deeply rooted even in the Middle America. According to reports on this subject, this trend has been on the rise in the last ten years, especially amongst white women in their 20s who only have a college education.
2009 statistics had that 59% of married women entered their matrimonial home with children out of wedlock. The same report showed that there was a surge in births outside marriage among younger women, which covered for two thirds of children in the U.S. These records are a clear sign of the changing family set up and intimation of generational transformation. The only groups of women who resist the trend of being unmarried mothers are the college graduates. This, in turn, affects the family structure with a division according to class. People in the present society relate the economic and social rewards of marriage to people with high levels of education. Despite the records, the issue of unmarried mothers crosses the socioeconomic boundaries. There more women who have chosen the unwed mothers path, and yet they have high levels of education, are older and have a reasonable source of income.
However, these statistics drastically drop, when older women get involved in the issue of marriage and single parents. All over the country, four out of ten births are to unwed mothers. For instance, in Multnomah County, the rate stands at 34%, while Washington and Clackamas report more births to unmarried mothers. Sociologists, investigating family matters, report a substantial shift in the family set up, and it all has to do with women’s changing attitude towards marriage and men. Family settings have radically transformed, and the sociologists do not relate this to motherhood.
The records on single women with children keep rising with every year. In 2008, the figures indicated that 41% of children born did not have married parents. This was a rise from 28% in 1990 records. In addition, the study established a decline in the number of teenage mothers and in place, a rise in numbers of older parents. The United States research, drawn from census reports and health statistics by the Pew Research Centre, clearly summarized a trend of couples marrying in later life and delaying parenthood till they can comfortably meet the expense. 2008 figures expound on the subject that 10% of births were to teenagers and 14% to older women (Derr, MacNair & Huebl, 2005).
In relation to marriage, single women with children rarely get married. A small number of these unmarried mothers successfully settle in to marriage, while majorities remain single for the rest of their lives. The decision to either marry or remain unmarried lies with personal preferences or the prevailing circumstances. Accounting for her situation of being an unmarried mother, one interviewer relates the situation to the society’s perceptions. Despite her initiative, to try and find herself a husband, most men she met preferred women with no children. On the other hand, some unmarried women chose to raise their children on their own because of various personal reasons. The following section of the paper will explore the various reasons behind single women with children being unmarried even after attaining a certain age.
Causes of high numbers of single women with children in the United States
Researchers reached a conclusion that a majority of children, born and raised by single mothers, were not unplanned. Rather the pregnancies are between planned and unplanned, which means exceeding many young mothers wanted to have babies (Ludtke, 1997). People have varied reasons for having or wanting to have a baby. For most people, having a baby provides the mother with someone with whom they can show their love. A baby gives the mother a chance to extend love to a person who is more close to her, somebody who came from her own blood. This is usually the back bone of most pregnancies, and this can be from a remarkably tender age. According to the above statistics, the rise in the number of single women with children occurs mostly amongst societies with poor backgrounds. Poor women’s need for children seems to be linked to their financial relation and education hard-up situations. As for relation matters, poor women come from surroundings, which lack close and trusting ties. This lies in the women relationship with their male counterparts.
Being raised in an environment where men fall in the category of untrustworthy species and worse beings will have a negative impact to these women. Infidelity in these societies gives the impression of men being the problem and the major cause of family problems. In addition, there was an era, in which infidelity was a universal issue with fathers being the main culprits. The same time witnessed drug and alcohol problems, criminal behavior, and domestic violence. All these unfortunate happenings seemed to disrupt the family relation in America, hence, a low profile in relation to marriage and family. According to researchers, motherhood provided these women with an opportunity to create bonds of love. Studies relate to increase in single women with children to the need to establishing a long-lasting connection with somebody.
Other women relate to being unmarried mothers to hurtful experiences during her childhood times. Young girls who witness and experience domestic violence in their families, grow up with a negative attitude towards men and marriage. The idea of living with a man becomes unbearable because of the bad memories the woman had of her family. At this particular point, women opt to maintain distant relationships with the fathers of their children or just get babies and raise their own babies (Stein, 1981). Another personal reason for women choosing to remain unmarried is the fact that the men they love do not wish to settle down. Such men prefer to have a relationship with the women but not to be tied down in marriage. For this reason, women have to follow their decision and, hence, remain single for the rest of their lives. On the other hand, the single women have a negative attitude towards men and marriage. The empowerment of women gave rise to the ideology that what men can do, then, women can do it even better. In this respect, women believe that men are not significant in their lives as they have all the resources to raise their children perfectly. This notion is the principal reason behind the rise in unmarried motherhood numbers in America. Women have reliable sources of income, are highly educated and can raise their children on their own. In addition, the unmarried mothers believe that marriage will tie them down and, hence, miss out on advancing in their carriers.
Teen pregnancies happen almost every day, and with the strict laws on abortion, most young girls choose to keep and raise their babies. This means that young girls become mothers at a tender age. By the time they reach the appropriate age of marriage, their male counterparts fear settling with women who already have children. For a frightfully long time, the society has developed a negative attitude towards single women with children. To most men, settling in such relationships will be the start of several disputes. For instance, because of insecurity, most men will not be comfortable with their wives communicating with their baby daddies. However, this is an inevitable happening. These reasons force most women to remain single because of the several complicating issues, which arise once they get married. Single women also talk of their male counterparts not being reliable partners, hence, they are better of being unmarried. Finally, most young parents depend on the government safety net, which encourages them to stay single.