American families are changing; the role of Mom is changing too. How do you feel about trends in family structure?
Yesterday, I reported that 1 in 4 American children are living in single-parent households—and women are heading nearly all of those families. Single-parent families are much more common here than in most other Western societies. This trend is only one of several that are transforming marriage, family, and child rearing. Along with more single-parent families, more unmarried couples and more same-sex couples are raising kids—and more women are choosing to be single Moms by having children without a husband or male partner.
How do Americans feel about all this?
Americans are divided into three categories by their responses, according to a new Pew Research Center study that examined attitudes about single mothers and family-related trends:
- ACCEPTERS (31%) generally feel that these trends make no difference to society. Women are more likely to be in this group, as are Latinos, secular adults, and those who live on the East Coast.
- REJECTERS (32%) dislike every change in family structure, saying that these trends are bad for society. Rejecters tend to be white, older, Republican, married, and religious.
- SKEPTICS (37%) are tolerant of these changes, but worry that they may be bad for American society.Young Americans, Democrats, and minorities tend to be in this category.
There’s more! Single Moms get special attention, and it’s not positive. Almost all Skeptics and Rejecters agree that a single woman having children without a male partner to help them is bad for society. How did the Accepters respond to this question? Well, they were—more accepting. Only 2% of Accepters expressed the strong negative viewpoint on single motherhood. While they were accepting, however, they weren’t overflowing with praise. Only 13% of Accepters said that women raising kids without a male partner is good for society.
How do you feel about single Moms overall?
Are single Moms good or bad for our society?
Does single motherhood really make any difference?
(Originally published at www.OurValues.org, an online experiment in civil dialogue on American values.)