A new study looking at the behavior of children from two parent and single parent homes found that those raised by single mothers may have more behavioral issues. Children of single mothers were also found to have more instances of poverty and negative outcomes.
A study focusing on 14,000 children born between 200 and 2002 in Britain may have a negative outlook on single mothers. It found that children raised in two parent homes had fewer behavioral issues and other problems than those by single mothers. Only 6 percent of those from two parent homes displayed behavior problems, while 12 percent of those from single mother homes did.
Family make-up, parental qualifications and household income also played major roles in the behavior of children.
The study involved asking mothers to rate their children based on their hyperactivity, conduct, emotional problems and relationships with peers. The researchers then organized the children into three categories ranging from “normal” to “serious behavioural problems.” Nearly twice as many children from single parent homes were rated as having issues than those from two parent homes. However, children in homes where one parent was a step-parent had even higher levels of behavioral issues, at 15 percent.
Lisa Calderwood, from London University’s Institute of Education, said: “Living apart from natural fathers can be associated with poverty and negative outcomes for children.”
Young mothers were more likely to become single mothers, or to have step-fathers in the home. The researchers say the study shows that young mothers, such as those with teen pregnancies, need more government assistance to help create stable homes for their children. Children of single mothers are shown to have less economic security and receive less parental attention than those with two parent homes.
What this study fails to point is that it’s tiring for single moms to do everything. Clearly the results mean that this hard working group needs more support. Support and help for single mothers, such as others who can provide some help with childcare, is very important for these families. – Summer, staff writer
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