By Olayinka Awe
In recent years, our society has witnessed a significant increase in the number of single mothers raising their children independently. This rise in single motherhood has sparked discussions and debates about its far-reaching implications, not just for the mothers themselves but for the broader social fabric.
Single mother parenting is a multifaceted phenomenon that touches upon economic, emotional, and societal dimensions. This article seeks to explore effect of single mother parenting in our society, shedding light on the challenges faced by these mothers and the potential consequences for the communities in which they live.
A 74-year-old woman, Mrs Adebola Balogun Adesida while speaking with The Hope, lamented that in the issue it was a stigma in the olden days for a woman to marry and later divorce her husband.
” It was regarded a shameful thing and very few people that it happened to regarded it as a shameful thing and hid themselves. Some left the town to another place to hide. Once a lady gets married she stays in her husbands house forever.
“Even when she has any dispute with her husband she is turned back and never encouraged to stay in the family house but to stick to her husband’s house. But now it is very rampant and our women don’t see any shame in it anymore”.
She expressed that civilisation has now made the rate of single mothers to be high. She explained further that in those days, husbands work in the farm while wives assist in the farm or do petty trading.
“Wives no longer go to the farm with their husbands. With education, women began to work in government offices.
They now struggle with men, trying to claim equality with men. The women want to drive their own cars, build their houses, travel overseas and want to be independent! These ambition always cause dispute that may eventually lead to separation and divorce.”
She concluded that influence of Western culture and changing societal norms have also contributed to the rise in single mothers.
Mr Paul Epebinu, 85 argued that the economic condition of the country is another factor, saying that the rate of unemployment is high and many husbands cannot feed their wives nor pay school fees of their children.
“This factor leads to some mothers having extra marital relationships.This financial challenge increases the number of single mothers in the society,” he stated.
Mr Ayodeji Solomon, man in his late 30s said technology is a strong factor that has increased the rate of single mothers.
“This is because the world has become a global village where one can see what is happening in overseas countries in the comfort of one’s home. Misuse of phones where lies can easily be told often leads to deceit. All sorts of manipulations and pranks played by couples lead to divorce especially when the lies are discovered. He also said with the advent of social media and dating apps, it has become easier for relationships to form and dissolve quickly. The convenience of technology has made it simpler for individuals to connect with others, leading to more instances of single motherhood,” he lamented.
A pastor, Mrs Adetutu Oreofe said homes that are not built on Christ will fall. It is said that a home without Christ and patience is a home in crisis that may eventually fall.
She also stated that a home built on Christ and patience does not only provides a solid base for a family, but it also cultivates values such as love, forgiveness, and resilience.
A clergy, Lanre Johnson in his late 40s believed that the society also can be the cause of high rate of single mothers. He said parents of nowadays only care about what the society says or feel about them; and also that the society tends to only respect and celebrate the rich and let the poor family to see themselves as valueless.
” Everyone wants to be celebrated,so one way or the other it affect the relationship which leads to separation, he concluded.
An Alfa, who wants to remain anonymous said the men refuse to be men as they refuse to take responsibility immediately their partner offers to help. It is very challenging when men refuse to take responsibility and accept help from their partners. He said it can create an imbalance in the relationship and hinder personal growth. He said communication and mutual respect are key in addressing the issue and promoting equal partnership.
Mrs Aladegbaye, a grandmother said parents are at fault, for not training their male children well as their female children.
“Some parents concentrate on the female children alone thereby neglecting the male child. A good and well trained boy will naturally become a good husband in the future. When a good girl marries a well trained boy, both will go on together. There will be peace and understanding at home. Single mothers, will as a result, be reduced,” she explained.
Civilisation, unemployment, misuse of technology and not knowing Christ are mostly fingered causes of high rate of single mothers in our society
Awe is an intern with The Hope from Elizade University.