Lack of financial support for single moms – why?
Republican Rep Joe Walsh is the latest “Dad” to be listed as not paying child support. Although he claims not that much is owed, it’s hard to believe that his ex-wife would file an erroneous claim. Especially when you look at the number of dollars in support owed across the country. In FY 2010, the total amount of arrearages reported for all previous fiscal years was $110 billion but only $7 billion of these arrearages was collected and distributed (see FOS site below). A quick Google search will return millions of hits and stories about dads not paying child support. There has even been legislation (Single Parent Protection Act) introduced to try and help single parents
“Child Support” evokes so many emotions, most notably either “dead beat dad” or “gold digging mom”
However, lost in the valley is a waiting child caught in the middle of a fight they have no voice in. From personal experience, I have never received the court ordered financial support. I thought I was being very fair when we split up, asking for only $250 a month for two kids back in 1994. The court would adjust this amount as the kids grew older, unfortunately court orders were ignored and with the number of cases in California, my kids and our case was not a priority. Now, in 2011, my ex-husband owes thousands of dollars due to accrued interest and medical costs for the children. Fortunately, I was able to attend college, obtain multiple degrees and eventually secure a job that would provide enough to put a roof over our heads. But, my children still did without … more importantly, they were left with the empty hollows of life without an involved father while seeing their friends’ dads come to soccer games and take them for ice cream.
Stepping in and Helping Out
So, what can you do to help? Can you call your congressman? I am sure Representative Walsh’s office has been inundated. Yes, call your state reps, more importantly I ask the men in our country and others to stand up as examples. Talk about it on the job, at the ball park. If you see a friend of yours intentionally not paying, pull him aside and talk to him about the effect on his child. Send him to the blog below. I know a lot of relationships end in anger or a man may feel the money doesn’t go towards the child. First, he doesn’t know for sure where the money goes, that’s speculation. Second, never let your anger towards someone influence your relationship with your child or your responsibilities as a father.
To the men out there: Do you want your child to grow up having the feelings this blogger does? Don’t you want your child to have a better life than you did? Even if you hate your child’s mother, pay what you owe for the sake of your child and your child’s future. The dividends may not be seen right away. But instead of growing up to writing a haunting blog, your son or daughter may grow up to be President and have a platform to which you they will thank you from and be eternally grateful.
Resources and Facts