As the divorce rate rises in America, and the number of unmarried couples having children increases, our nation is now faced with a staggering statistic: 1 in 3 American children live without a father in the home. And, as this article from the Washington Times notes, in many urban areas, only 1 in 10 children live with both parents. The article has some sobering statistics about the break-down of American families.
These statistics present some hard problems for our society: How do we help families stay together? How do we help families learn to do what is best for their children even when the parents are living apart? In what ways can we help the children affected by parental conflict?
None of these are easy questions. As Family Lawyers, we all too often see people enter into a marriage flippantly (or decide to have a child) without thinking through the consequences of what happens if they later decide to divorce or split up. Ultimately, it is the children who are left in the middle. While some parents can make things work, many parents simply are incapable of parenting with their ex-spouse/ex-boyfriend/ex-girlfriend, etc.
As a society, we simply must do a better job of promoting strong families. They have been and will continue to be the bedrock of our nation. And, we must also learn how to help those families that do break apart know how to put their children first.
This article talks about one group, the National Fatherhood Initiative, that is trying to do something about these issues. What are other ways that you have seen that have been effective in quelling these problems?