If you think raising children on your own is a badge of honor showing what fortitude you have, you might want to rethink that decision. While it may be true that we canâ€™t always prepare for what life throws at us and relationships can fall apart, far too many of us act is if weâ€™ve won a prize for reinforcing behavior that puts our entire community at a huge disadvantage.
Far too many women are singing some variation of the â€œHe Done Me Wrongâ€ song as well. Thatâ€™s followed by the even more popular â€œ I Can Make It Without Youâ€ song in relation to rearing the offspring that have often been left behind.
The statistics donâ€™t bear good tidings. The number #1 consequence is likely to be poverty. I know many reading such a stat may take pride in knowing due to their advanced degree or high-salaried job that they are not hurting financially. There may even be an air of class superiority at play. If you were to ask the children though, they would freely express their need to have a cohesive parental unit. They are hurting emotionally and in so many other intangible ways if they are raised missing key components to stability. If the children are the offspring of a heterosexual couple they want a mother AND a father. Regardless children need to watch and learn from healthy interactions between men and women. The ties that bind us biologically are powerful. Even children whoâ€™ve been adopted and raised in loving homes want to know who made them and where they came from.
Women may give birth to but cannot raise boys to manhood. What often happens in the black community has become the new normal but itâ€™s an aberration. Due to the lack of protection many young girls are at serious risk. Itâ€™s one thing for an adult couple to be together but there are too many instances where the abandoned â€œwomanâ€ is barely 18 and the male who moved on is a good decade or so older. The women tend to be hardest on their own gender hence the phrase, â€œraise you daughters but love your sonsâ€. Itâ€™s the epitome of reinforced sexism where the males are prized just for breathing and the females are told to prepare for â€œlifeâ€. Nothing will break the cycle when thereâ€™s no accountability, no acknowledgment of the huge imbalance and no reparations. **I havenâ€™t even mentioned how the explosion in HIV rates have coincided with the out of wedlock birth rates.
Males that see their mothers doing everything by themselves are most likely to presume that other women will do the same. Fatherless males are less likely to make adequate partners across the board. Any girl questioning the wisdom of this indoctrination is told sheâ€™s being selfish for even expecting her needs to be considered.
While other racial and ethnic groups also are experiencing an increase in out of wedlock birth rates and you may personally know other non-black single mothers they are not dealing with the particular problems that have plagued the black community. There are Scandinavian countries with large populations of never-married mothers but they have governmental infrastructure to offset the burdens such as state-sponsored health care and child care, paid time off and other catch-alls that prevent people from falling through the cracks. Here we have the opposite in cases like Banita Jacks. Grandma canâ€™t step in to help you raise your kids anymore. Those other groups are already thriving or taking whatever steps are necessary to continually elevate the status of their people.
This is also why the focus on attaching oneâ€™s fortunes to another groupâ€™s rise is dangerous. Itâ€™s a compensation tactic that has only exposed our weaknesses to the masses. Nobody else is pushing for â€œrainbow coalitionsâ€ at the expense of their own groupâ€™s stability. The lack of leadership from the top makes for a very shaky foundation and until that is addressed things will continue to spiral downward.
Women cannot and should not try to step in to replace the lack of participation by the males in their community. The males have proven themselves unable and incapable as a collective to do their duty and meet even the most basic needs for the group. They need to stop being supported immediately! That’s why I said this is the non-PC evaluation. Our survival depends on it. For many of us may be doing everything right but we may come into contact with those who’d seek to harm us. As for the children – itâ€™s too late for those that are already here but we can stop the continued bleeding for the next generation if we tell the unvarnished and uncompromised truth.
CRIME â€“ Black on black killings (by males) seem to be the only time anyone focuses on intra-black conflicts but we have the largely unreported street harassment and sexual assault of black girls and women to consider. The more sensational crimes against them may have only now just begun to get coverage (i.e Dunbar Village) but thatâ€™s because of the bravery of a handful of black women whoâ€™ve publicly ripped the veil of silence off and demanded it. The violence that occurs in predominantly black residential areas is only escalating.
UNEMPLOYMENT â€“ Again, the conversation is steered toward the suffering of black males because their numbers are so huge. Yet when I read about it I get the feeling someone is trying to apply guilt and accountability to non-blacks to resolve it. So the reliance on others to resolve the failure of males to protect and be self-sustaining is also displayed here. Why isnâ€™t anyone talking about the lack of creation and support of black-owned businesses? Black women and children arenâ€™t the only thing that was abandoned. The entire infrastructure was gutted in favor of integration. The problem is many black males equate proximity to white women (or other non-black women) with success and continue to do so today. Their focus is on fulfilling a sense of inadequacy through their co-mingling with other women and will gladly offer all of their resources to do so. Which is their choice, but the blowback is indicative of who and what was considered importantâ€¦and what wasnâ€™t.
EDUCATION â€“ The poor performance and fast-tracking to special needs that is happening to black children is also the result of the lack of infrastructure. Teachers can only do so much. Reading fundamentals and comprehension is mandatory. Kids that are malnourished and under stress will not be able to perform well in school or retain what theyâ€™re being taught. Not to mention the fact that education lies beyond the school curriculum. If your child is not prepared to compete they will be left behind.
INTERPERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS â€“ It is a very real threat to the status of a group when the family structure has been eviscerated. Now is the time to rethink the idea that the only viable mate for a black woman is a black male. Iâ€™m stating that specifically because the learned habits of African American females have been to steer them toward intentionally limiting their choices. How often have women who â€œknow betterâ€ experimented with the quality of her life by choosing a lesser-than? Too many think what theyâ€™re drawn to was their own free will talking versus the reinforcement of indoctrination that resulted from their being around a small group of people parroting each other with failed ideologies.
THE IMPACT- Skewed ideals of whatâ€™s normal now permeates the collective. Despite having a black President our political capital has sunk to an all new low. The imbalance of service to trying to save the community means black women are not using their talent and resource to help themselves or the greater society as a whole. Our civic service has been redirected to appealing to those who hold us in contempt. For all we know the next big innovative initiative that was to be found through someoneâ€™s daughter may never take root. There are important relationships to be built and conversations to be had that we are being pulled away from because our focus lies elsewhere. The burden is too great. The assault on our femininity and sanity must not be allowed to continue unchallenged.
SOLUTIONS â€“ Stop lying! Donâ€™t limit yourself! Reevaluate everything youâ€™ve been taught and think about what drives you. Start singing a new song, â€œWhatâ€™s In It For Meâ€. YOU are not the community and itâ€™s not your responsibility to self-sacrifice. If you attend a church that passes the collection plate around 8 times and has you sitting there the whole day on Sunday and doing things 3-4 times a week ask yourself why. Especially if you mostly only see other black women such as yourself AND youâ€™re singleâ€¦ If you seethe in the presence of other black women before any of you have spoken to each other think about that. Expect a monogamous relationship with that guy who claims heâ€™s feeling you where he takes equal responsibility for meeting your emotional and physical needs where youâ€™re both practicing safe sex. If you are too afraid or prideful to admit youâ€™re drowning ask for help. Be willing to do something in an entirely new way especially if itâ€™s a challenge to what youâ€™re used to. Tune out all the â€œblackâ€ shows, movies, music youâ€™re used to participating in. Stop thinking in terms of race and start thinking in terms of gender. Ask yourself what do you NEED? Know that itâ€™s okay to be angry about this huge imbalance and the way black women have been mistreated. At some point though you have to let it go and move on. That is key: MOVING ON. Thereâ€™s an entire world awaiting to bask in your loveliness.
As long as people (read that as males) continue to talk around the problems and refuse to adequately address the choices that have resulted in these problems there are no â€œsave the communityâ€ solutions forthcoming. The only ones who will resolve the male abandonment (and racialized misogyny) problem are other males. The ones who get it canâ€™t make the masses step in line either because this has gone on too long. This is about pulling a few conscious people out of the Matrix. As we see by the overwhelming majority of people attempting to address this are women (who are themselves a small minority subgroup) most will continue to ignore, obfuscate and watch the house burn down.
The only course of action to take is to speak truthfully about this and put out a warning message for others. We canâ€™t change the past but we can change course for our future. Being honest in admitting raising kids alone doesn’t work will only strengthen us. Life isnâ€™t perfect or fair so weâ€™ve got to make the best of it and learn to make solid choices. For those women who are fed up now is to remove themselves from the contamination, get well and inoculate themselves and their loved ones, especially the young girls from making those poor choices to begin with.