Sunday, June 21, 2009

Will Father's Day Someday Become Obsolete?

Today is the day children across America are celebrating their dads. Even though my dad is deceased, I still honor his memory because he was a great father who had a strong presence in my life.

But, unlike me, my daughter does not share that sentiment. She does not acknowledge her dad on this day---or any other day for that matter. Why? Because he was an absent father. Yes, we were married but his actions made him appear absent more often than not. When you see your mom struggle to make ends meet because dad doesn't pay child support, he doesn't try to stay in contact, doesn't participate in your school activities, or offer to help with college tuition, its easy to just forget rather than celebrate Father's Day.

The sad thing is there are many children who feel like my daughter and what's even worse is some children never have the benefit of knowing who their Father is because mama doesn't know. (Just watch a Maury show sometime).

A National Household Education Surveys Program shows that 28% percent of White students, 39% of Hispanic students, 69% of Black students, and 36% overall live without their fathers.

Here's another startling statistic from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy:

About 1.7 million babies were born to unmarried women in 2007, a 26 percent rise from 1.4 million in 2002 and more than double the number in 1980. Unmarried women accounted for 39.7 percent of all U.S. births in 2007 -- up from 34 percent in 2002 and more than double the percentage in 1980.

So you tell me, what does the future hold for Father's Day about 10 years from now?


rosie said...

This post captures some of the pain that many are feeling. Sometimes I tire of these Mothers Day and Father Day celebrations that should be something we do every day. Instead the retailers just make more money. Let us begin to address the pain that many feel with the loss that goes on and on.
Thanks for addressing this aspect

Beverly said...

You're right Rosie, it's just another way for retailers to make money. These stats are also a clear reflection of just how much times have really changed and the breakdown of the family unit as we, as boomers, knew it.

Thanks for your comments.