When a woman wishes to diminish her own value (as well as that of the covenant of marriage) by cohabitating with a man who is not willing to make the vow of committing his life to her, it’s a shame. When a woman with children does so, it too often becomes a crime.
Thirty years ago, nearly 80% of America’s children lived with both their Mommy and Daddy, who were married. Now, only two-thirds of them do. Of all families with children, nearly 30% are now one-parent families, up from 17% in 1977. The net result is instability, neglect, and the likelihood that children will be in homes with adults who have no biological tie to them.
Children living in homes with unrelated adults are nearly fifty times as likely to die of inflicted injuries as are children living with their bio-parents. (Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, 2005). Children of single parents had a 77% greater risk of being harmed by physical abuse than children living with both parents (National Incidence Study, 1996). Children living in stepfamilies, or with single parents are at higher risk of physical or sexual assault than children living with their bio-parents (University of New Hampshire’s Crimes Against Children Research Center). Girls whose parents divorce are at significantly higher risk of sexual assault, regardless of which bio-parent they live with (Family Law, Washington and Lee University).
It is righteous to judge the lifestyles of people who have children, because the results of their choices can result in harm (psychological, physical or sexual), as well as death to innocent children. “Six year old Oscar Jimenez, Jr. was beaten to death in California, then buried under fertilizer and cement. Two year old Devon Shackleford drowned in an Arizona swimming pool. Jayden Cangro, also two, died after being thrown across a room in Utah. In each case, as in many others every year, the alleged or convicted perpetrator had been the boyfriend of the child’s mother. (Associated Press, November 18, 2007).
The recent “Baby Grace” case was no different. According to news reports, the mother’s boyfriend beat the child to death because the child didn’t address him politely.
I am firm in my beliefs and advice that young women, pregnant out-of-wedlock, need to consider adoption as in the best interest of the child, and that divorced parents should not marry again until the children are grown (and if they do, they shouldn’t marry someone with children or create more children, because they will be sidelining their own children).
Of course, I get everything from “antsy” to angry feedback for these recommendations, as adults feel entitled to their happiness, freedom, and sexual adventures. My point of view is that the children’s needs should eclipse the privileges of adult desires.
A week ago, a 29 year old female caller to my radio program, with two small children from her first marriage, was now divorcing her second husband. Two divorces before the age of 30! Her question was should she let the new “ex-to-be” see the kids? How about this for a life? Each weekend, you alternate between different “daddies.”
I suggested she not date again until the children graduated high school.