Family can exist in many forms and as a single parent, there are some things I know to be important. What lies in the epicenter of that are the people who consider themselves family and the love that they have for one another. These bonds are important because family helps us get through the most disastrous times and the best times. Family is important because they can offer support and security coupled with unconditional love; they will always look to see and bring out the best in you even if you cannot see it for yourself. Family is important because they will, for the most part, be the only ones who can really understand you and bring you back to that place of peace.
Family is also very crucial to guide you down the path of morality when it comes to outside influences such as dealing with drugs, alcohol, peer pressure, bullying, or someone saying negative things to you. Your family might not be able to shield you from everything, but they will be able to assist you through the hard times and give you the tools you need to diffuse or avoid the situation. Family will provide you with a home if you do not have one and they will point you in the right direction so that you can get back on your feet. Family will tell you what you do not want to hear, but they do it out of love to help you grow.
Another reason family is so important is because they can teach us to know our family history, which can shape our persona into something positive and give us a sense of direction. Marcus Garvey once said, “A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin, and culture is like a tree without roots.” Why am I stressing the importance of family? It is because there are some people who are not blessed with two parents and those that are blessed with two parents might not be close to their parents and are closer to their aunts, uncles, or grandparents. That being said, for the last 6 years, single-parent families have held a steady rate of 35% of total households in the United States. In 2016, that percentage totaled out to approximately 24 million kids living with single parents in the United States, which is more than the population of Florida. According to the Kid’s Data Center, in 2016, 32% of single parents were living in poverty compared to 7% of two-parent family homes. There is a clear understanding that growing up in destitute can present academic obstacles, reduced access to safe communities, quality enrichment activities, and can cause a heightened risk of physical, behavioral, and emotional issues. That is why I speak so emphatically on the significance of family. when family comes together, they can make the impossible become possible, and give hope to those that they love so dearly and give them a fighting chance in this life. Parents, both married and single, and elders must hold each other accountable because our children are worth it. “One generation plants the trees and another gets the shade.”
Kids Count Data Center (13 April 2020) Single Parents are Raising More Than One-Third of U.S. Kids. Retrieved from: https://datacenter.kidscount.org/