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Men as parents.

 
 
Reply Mon 5 Nov, 2018 07:05 pm
I am a single parent. When I make this claim, some people get really upset, as if I am disrespecting "real" single parents (i.e. women).

There is a teenager who lives with me about two thirds of the time for whom I have been responsible, in great part, for raising. No one would question a woman with a child being a single parent no matter how involved the father is. We as a society have an assumption that women are parents and that fathers are minimally involved. More and more this is untrue.

If we are going to have an equal society, the assumption should be that fathers have an equal role in raising children. There is no reason to believe there is something gender specific about nurturing, caring and teaching children. The assumption that mothers have custody has to be changed, and there should be great respect given to committed parents (regardless of their gender).

This is one set of deeply ingrained gender stereotypes that aren't being challenged... even by the people who claim to be challenging gender stereotypes.
 
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rosborne979
 
  2  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 05:45 am
@maxdancona,
I’m a single parent with a daughter. Nobody ever seems surprised or upset about that. What do people say to you exactly? I’m not sure I understand.
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maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 05:51 am
@bunnyhabit ,
Huh?. The teenager who lives with me is my daughter. I thought it was obvious. I think you are overreacting a little bit.

I am also guessing you are not a fan of adoption in general.
PUNKEY
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 06:53 am
@maxdancona,
I don’t know where you live but that’s an outdated mentality that fathers can’t parent. But I do agree, there is a difference. Many weekend fathers I see are lax about the kids’ hygiene (showers and hair care) and bedtime hours enforcement. And if they aren’t cooks, there’s lots of fast food on the menu.

The positive is the male bonding and - if done right - firm but loving discipline.

(Just an observation from many years watching)
maxdancona
 
  -2  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 07:55 am
@PUNKEY,
Your experience matches the gender stereotypes I am talking about.

1) The term "weekend father" implies a parent with minimal time and little involvement with their kids. A parent with equally shared custody is not a "weekend parent"... more and more divorces end with shared custody. And, there are cases of "weekend mothers".

I am just a father.

2) "Dad's house, dad's rules. Mom's house mom's rules". This is the most logical and equal way to deal with differences in parenting styles. My daughter has always understood this, both parents are parents and both make the rules.

My ex-wife is now upset with the clothes I buy for my daughter. I mostly bring my daughter to the mall with a set budget and general guidelines (you need something for cold weather) and she is perfectly capable of choosing her own style. She picks jeans, t-shirts with sarcastic sayings, hoodies and flannel shirts. Her mom is angry with me because "her" daughter should be wearing "girl clothes".

The "dad's house (in this case dad's money) dad's rules" standard works fine... although my daughter doesn't want to wear the clothes mom buys her.

The idea that the mother sets the rules based on what she knows is best for the kids, and the dad is just a support role is rather outdated.

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izzythepush
 
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Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 11:44 am
@maxdancona,
You're not a single parent. You're a part time parent. Real single parents are just that, on their own. Maybe the main carer could be classed as a single parent at a push but not you.

It's not down to gender, it's down to being the only parent because the other one has either died or deserted them.

I'm a real single parent. When my wife died my eldest was 12 and my youngest 4. I brought them up on my own.

I'm a single dad, you're not.
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 11:49 am
@izzythepush,
It is all about gender.

- A divorced woman is assumed to be a single parent no matter how the effort of raising a child is split between her and her ex-husband.

- A divorced man is only assumed to be a parent if his wife has died or deserted him.

The gender stereotypes are pretty obvious. Would you attack a woman who claimed to be a single mother if the ex-husband still had some part in raising the kids?
engineer
  Selected Answer
 
  2  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 11:54 am
@izzythepush,
izzythepush wrote:

You're not a single parent. You're a part time parent.

I am neither so perhaps I don't have standing, but I think there is room to recognize both as "single" parents even though each has a unique set of challenges. I have never differentiated.
izzythepush
 
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Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 12:14 pm
@maxdancona,
I notice you deleted your previous post. This is my reply regardless.

No you weren't, you were a parent. You've never been a single parent. And yes, when you describe yourself as such it's a huge insult. Being a single parent is hard work, you have to do everything yourself.

You have never had to tell a four year old boy that his mother is dead and he will never see her again because you're not a single parent. And for you to claim that you're a single parent isn't just insulting. It's disgusting, something that's real low life.
izzythepush
 
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Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 12:15 pm
@engineer,
I repeat, Max has never had to tell a four year old boy that his mother is dead and he will never see her again because he's not a single parent.

That's not just a different set of challenges.
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maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 12:17 pm
@engineer,
In a good marriage fathers aren't "part-time" parents even though the mother is around. It is a partnership, but both mother and father are full-time parents. After divorce, the partnership is more difficult to maintain, but the role of a parent remains.

My daughter got in an accident walking to school. There was an ambulance involved (she is fine now), they called me. I dropped what I was doing... no good father is going to say "sorry, it isn't my time"... the parenting schedule didn't matter. She is my daughter all the time. The same is true for her mother... the idea that she is a "part-time parent" would be just as insulting to her.

Sure, there is an advantage to having someone who can take your kid for a weekend so you can have a social life. But, that is true for married couples as well.

Fathers and mothers are both parents "full time" regardless of whether they married or divorced.
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maxdancona
 
  -2  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 12:20 pm
@izzythepush,
izzythepush wrote:

No you weren't, you were a parent. You've never been a single parent. And yes, when you describe yourself as such it's a huge insult. Being a single parent is hard work, you have to do everything yourself.


The question is whether you consider divorced mothers in the same way you consider divorced fathers. I don't question that your situation was more difficult than mine. But I don't think that your taking offense at that word is reasonable. Would you attack a woman in the same way if she claimed to be a "single mother" even though the father still provided some help?

There are lots of divorced women calling themselves "single mothers". Do they offend you?

If you are consistent with your definition of "single mother" and "single father" then I retract my claim it is about gender. I would still disagree with you about the definition of the term.... and I do think your attacks on single parents as a result of divorce are unwarranted.
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 12:27 pm
@maxdancona,
You are not a single parent. This has got nothing to do with gender it's all about you claiming to be something you're not.

I really don't care what you think, but if both parents are still alive and taking an active role in parenting neither is a single parent.

Don't you know what single means? It means one. You're not a single parent, you're an attention seeking feckless dilettante. You could never raise children on your own.
maxdancona
 
  -2  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 12:29 pm
@izzythepush,
I do think it is about gender. I don't think you would attack a single mother in the same way.
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izzythepush
 
  4  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 12:30 pm
In fact there are unique challenges to being a single dad, and it would be nice to talk to other real single dads about it, but Max's attention seeking misogyny has pissed all over another serious issue.
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maxdancona
 
  0  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 12:45 pm
In the US at least, the term is commonly used the way that I am using it (gender stereotypes aside).

I am dating a single mother... and I very much appreciate the fact that some weekends her kids go with their father Wink. There is nothing wrong with that. Making sure that kid-free weekends sync up is a strange ritual of dating as single parents.
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Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 01:25 pm
@maxdancona,
All I can say is I agree with you.

For the record I know and have met many dads that are better over all parent.

If it helps I do think this is noticed more -
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Linkat
 
  0  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 01:28 pm
@bunnyhabit ,
bunnyhabit wrote:

As soon as men get pregnant and carry a fetus for nine months then suffer through child birth i am sure your wish will be granted. Is the teenager girl you are cohabitating with a relative? Surprised CPS has investigated why a man and teenager girl are living together. Woman almost always gain child custody unless judged unfit.


Sorry Max -- I stand corrected. Just note that not everyone feels this way.

It is unfair to state about men being pregnant - it isn't possible.

And to state about a teen girl --- what if you (assuming you are woman) had a teen boy --- would that be the same issue? I have often times left my teen daughter alone for several days with her dad when I was traveling - should I have been worried?
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TheSubliminalKid
 
  0  
Reply Tue 6 Nov, 2018 03:20 pm
@bunnyhabit ,
bunnyhabit wrote:

As soon as men get pregnant and carry a fetus for nine months then suffer through child birth i am sure your wish will be granted.


Trans and intersex guys can do this
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