We talk about deadbeat dads all the time. Do we really know the impact of not having a father figure around. It is staggering what the statistics say about fatherlessness. Money is an issue but the bigger issue seems to be the many social ills that occur from deadbeat dads.
Those of us who come from a single-parent home know the personal struggle of not having a father in our lives. We see other individual’s father in the picture and the feelings are sometimes overwhelming. The financial and mental stress affects so many of us. With that being said, this has to have a great impact on our society. Some kids ask at an early age, “where is my dad”, and later this can lead to resentment, anger issues and educational problems. We all know that the ideal situation is a two parent home but when that doesn’t happen there are consequences.
First of all, we have to know what constitutes a deadbeat dad. A deadbeat dad is defined as a father that does not financially take responsibility for his child. What is even more important is the fact that a father figure is not present. This seems to be the more damaging aspect of absenteeism. In 1998, President Clinton passed Deadbeat Parents Punishment Act. This act would punish those who flee to avoid payment of child support. Now this bill addresses mothers as well but the fact that we need a law enacted lets us know how much of a problem we have with deadbeats.
When it comes to financial support only 7% of mothers do not receive child support, this may come as a shock to many especially being that deadbeat dads get such a negative rap. But we can look at more statistics that seem to paint a pretty good view of what’s going on. 63% of youth suicides are from fatherless homes, 90% of all homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes, 85% of all children that exhibit behavioral disorders come from fatherless homes, and 71% of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes. These are only a few social problems that are caused by fatherlessness. They impact just about every facet of our culture.
In our capitalistic society we tend to focus on the financial aspect of deadbeat parents. But it is evident that the psychological, sociological and educational aspect not only affects the individuals involved but the rest of society as well. We should be much tougher on deadbeat dads as well as educating people on their options such as adoption, abstinence, and safe sex.