Single Fathers Treated Like 2nd Class Citizens

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I would like to take a moment to talk about a topic which is near and dear to my heart: single fathers, and their children.

Sad to say, in our society and many others (England is a notable example), single fathers are treated not as parents to their children, but as open wallets whose sole purpose in life is to be made to pay and pay, and whose only motivation for anything which they do is assumed to be to try to get out of paying and paying, and to “control their ex-wife and children”.

This make me so upset and sad, because I know first hand that nothing could be further from the truth.

In a previous life I was a noted advocate for single fathers and their children. And I am here to tell you that the vast majority of single fathers want only one thing: to be able to remain involved in the lives of their children. Ironically, the one thing which our family law system does best is to remove single fathers from the lives of their children, and facilitate controlling ex-wives (oh the irony) completely excising a father from their children’s lives.

Come on, people, you may be divorcing your husband, but your children are not divorcing their father!

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Children need both parents. They are painfully aware that who they are is half Mommy, and half Daddy, and any negative statement made in their presence about Daddy is internalized as a negative statement about themselves.

Do you really want to do that to your children?

It’s been demonstrated time and again that teenage girls who have been raised without their father in their lives in a meaningful way are more than 100% more likely to become single teen parents themselves, as they seek to fill the void left by the absence of their father.


Do you really want to do that to your children?

And if you have a son, rather than a daughter, consider the myth of the replacable male role model. Because that’s just what it is, a myth. Boys need their father in their lives, not “Uncle Jim”. Even if their father is a terrible role model, he is still their father, and nothing can change that. And they need to know him and make up their own minds about him.

So what does any of this have to do with patroling the Internet?

Well, I have noticed a striking similarity between single fathers, with whom she used to work, and anti-spammers, with whom she currently works. In both cases the vast majority of them are very decent, principled people. And that is often their downfall. Because they cannot imagine that a legal system would do anything other than “the right thing” – in the case of single fathers that is upholding the right which they assume they have to an ongoing relationship with their children; in the case of anti-spammers that is upholding the right which they assume they have to keep spam out of their own computer networks.

And in both cases, they are usually wrong. The legal system removes children from their reach, and delivers spam to their computers.

At least we can get Congress to pass a Federal anti-spam law. Fathers shouldn’t hold their breath waiting any time soon for a national “keep fathers involved in the lives of their children” law.

For those of you who may care about this issue, I recommend highly looking at the website. This is where I still keep my hand in these issues, albeit quietly and mostly behind the scenes.

To all of you single fathers out there – take heart, and hang in there. Keep doing the best that you can, and no matter what that looks like, your children will know. No matter how bad it is, children have a funny way of growing up, moving out of the house, and coming to see things as they really are.

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14 thoughts on “Single Fathers Treated Like 2nd Class Citizens

  1. I agree with Aunty. I am a college student in the U.S writing a report over “deadbeat dads”, and how they are over generalized and stereotyped. However, the vast majority of single fathers are very loving,caring, and will do anything for there children at the drop of a hat.

  2. As to the posting from the reader in comment #8 you must be a “frustrated,selfish stuck up,heartless BITCH” to make such a comment,with no clue of what really goes on in family court today!And as to apologies,the only one should be yours..

  3. Children are developing human beings, who have rights to develope, learn , and grow responsibly. For the most part, they are concieved in love, in a warm and intimate relationship.
    As single parents, our relationship with our former has companion has been terminated, generaly in a cold,hostile legal environment by uncaring,unscrupilous, amoral representatives who proport to having “representated” us, and state that they act in the “best interests of the child”. This envireonment often is one sided, with no voice for the father,frequently named as the ‘respondant’, nor the children, who are frequently named ‘dependent’. The civil,legal, Constitutional, and Human Rights of the respondant and dependant’s are ignored, giving rise to the precept that: “What goes on in Criminal court is civil, and what goes on in Civil Court is criminal !!” The dicotomy lies within the application of the Law, not in the letter of the Law.
    I learned this lesson from expierience, from my former companion and her attourney. But what else could I expect, as my former companion is the Third generations of divorce ?
    I can only hope and pray for my children to act more responsibly in their own lives, as my former companion/wife has provided them a role model as “the nurturor” which I find morally, legally, and spritually corrupt.
    Power and control are just as addictive as any drug !!

  4. has a very comprehensive list of related links.

    As to answer no 8. as to where all the abused men are. Their in family court!

    When men get “attacked” they defend themselves. Not to worry… they still end up in jail. (not a shelter)

    Sadly, a lot of women are abused without “physical” provocation.

    Bottom line of articles above….. Children are better off with the guidance and emotional support of both parents after a divorce. No ONE parent should have “FULL control” only to use THEIR child as a possession or opportunity for financial gain.

    Tom B

  5. A woman’s priorities for wanting to get married are totally different from a man’s.
    A woman wants financial security to raise HER children. When push comes to shove they are always hers. This attitude is a non starter because you can never own another humanbeing.
    A man wants to secure the woman he loves, but often finds that after the first child is born. He is “an also ran” and is no longer the most important person in her life. That is not the reason he got married in the first place, and is quite a shock.
    Most but not all women have a biological need to have children. This is not so with men.
    To bring another humanbeing into the world is not a right but an enormous responsibility and in all honesty requires the consent of both partners. Two yesses or one no is no!.
    Most Women considder that having bringing a baby into the world is a right. It is not. Especialy now as they have a choice.
    This point is critical. In a democratic society each person has the freedom to make responcible choices. Not only responcible to themselves but also to the rest of society.
    Bringing another person into the world to suffer just because she wants a baby is the most selfish thing I can think of.
    The usual retort to this is. “Well if we didn’t have children them the human-race would die out. This is B.s. because that is never a consideration.

  6. A response to anonymous comment number 8. I hope you die a slow and painful death! A recent scholarly article on the opinions of divorced spouses on family law showed that nearly 2/3 of the women had positive opinions of the outcomes and felt vindicated by the process while virtually no men (a figure of 5-10% was assigned since the only men responding positively were lawyers or others involved in the system) felt treated fairly. For every woman in a battered woman’s shelter there are at least ten, and more likely a hundred, men victimized by the system and denied access to their children. What’s worse, the custodial parent (read ex-wife) can block access to anyone she wants, usually grandparents and anyone associated with the husband. While the law has provisions for asserting visitation if blocked, de facto it is known that a custodial mother needs to get over 25 contempt of court citations before the court will even consider action against her while the father (ex father really) is hounded by a multibillion dollar collection agency for every penny he has. Many men are driven into backruptcy and awards of more than a man makes are common, even if not the majority. In short, men are screwed by the system, and children are screwed even worse. The system is run by principles laid down by Anna Freud in her book “Beyond the Best Interests of the Child” (far beyond them indeed). The system is largely staffed by raging feminists and most men describe their divorce as the worst experience of their lives. Many thoughtful scholars attribute a good fraction of the problems with today’s young men to the Feminists and the system of family so-called law that they set up. So, anonymous, spare me your testimonial advertising about the few woman who are still abused physically in marriage. I know it still happens, and it should be stopped, but it is a much less statistically significant problem for society than the problem of middle and working class males who are abused by the system every day. The press refuses to cover these stories (I’ve been told this by an editor of a major east coast daily) because of political correctness so Aunty’s courage in raising the issue is to be commended. However, she understates the problem. Men are treated like criminals in family law, and being treated like second class citizens would be an improvement.

  7. Heartfelt thanks from this recently-single dad for your remarks. I’m still in the process of finalizing a divorce and have yet to find a single facet of the dealings that made me say, “Good, at least the law gave me a fair shake on that one.” There are just so many layers of inequity. Discovering that my wife’s repeated acts of adultery (and her stealing funds from the family bank account to buy expensive gifts for her lovers) were not only “not illegal” but also have essentially no impact on her control of custody still has me reeling in sheer disbelief. And we needn’t discuss the perverse incentives in divorce law that encourage vengeful ex-wives to avoid taking meaningful employment. The financial prison that results for many single dads like me is just an enormous insult added to the already profound injury of being marginalized from our children’s lives. Truly there is a special place in hell for the divorce attorneys that exploit these laws on a daily basis to “punish” husbands who the law automatically assumes to be the cause of most divorces. I’m sure there are many divorces where the men “had it coming,” but my marriage wasn’t one of them. I pity my wife for not understanding the irreparable impact her actions (and insistance on divorce) will exert on our kids. And mostly I pity my kids. Hopefully advocates like you will get legislators to put some meaningful balance in the system in the future.

  8. Seen far too many shelters for abused women (where are the shelers for abused men?)to take this bullshit seriously! I’m nearly ready to unsubscribe from this newsletter, but I’ll hang around to read Chris’s personal apology to the single mothers accross America.
    I can’t stop myself: YOU SUCK!

  9. Dear Auntie Spam… Thanks! Contrary to my nature, your article made my eyes leak. I won’t go into any great detail, but my divorce from my wife and what happened after that was pure evil. I was given visiting rights with my four children, that is, if my ex would allow it. She used my visiting rights as a way of controlling everything I did.

    Going to court consisted of several people sitting there with calculators, trying to determine how much money they could squeeze out of me. There wan’t enough money left to pay rent on a small appartment. For a while I had to live in my car. When my ex and I left that court room, she cackled like a demon. You could have seen the evil in her face. What was the cause of the dirvorce, you might ask? She had just spent two years going to bed with my brother, and I found out about it.

    I found her disgusting after that. I didn’t even want be in the same house she was in. Did the courts take her infidility into consideration? Not in the least. They could not have cared less. They wanted my billfold – period.

  10. >You should all be aware that it was a condition of my continued visitation rights
    > that I not visit any site allied to Is it worth risking your visitation
    > rights just to view this site ?

    Surely you are mistaken; or someone involved with your case was. is a site which, in its support for single fathers, espouses both parents working together for the sake of the children. Perhaps you (or the other side in your case) was thinking of one of the sites which tries to incite and enflame fathers to angry action?

    If it is the case that your visitation order in fact states by name, forbidding you to visit it, I would like to see your order, as it is blatantly unconstitutional. You can send it in care of Aunty, thank you.

    In all of my years in practice as a fathers’ rights attorney I have never once heard of such a restriction, nor would it be permitted by any sane judge. There is not a person in the United States who should be concerned that viewing such a site could impact their parenting time. The site was developed by an attorney invited by the courts themselves, and indeed the then-sitting Governor of California, to educate judges and family law social workers on the issues which single fathers face.

    Anne P. Mitchell,
    Attorney at Law

  11. You should all be aware that it was a condition of my continued visitation rights that I not visit any site allied to Is it worth risking your visitation rights just to view this site ?

  12. Dear Congressperson:
    I would like you to be the sponsor of the paternal rights bill and introduce it to congress. It is about time that the paternity of all children be established, beyond the shadow of a doubt, now that DNA paternity tests are less than 10% of the cost of child births.
    The bill reads as following:
    “To assure the paternity of the child. To insure the paternal support of the child. To insure the paternal rights of the father. All necessary means will be utilized to confirm the identity of the father of all children born in the United States, it’s territories and protectorates.”
    The reasons for this bill are many.
    1: To prevent women who do not wish to have a man in their life from using men as sperm donors. No longer can a woman ( a professional career woman or a lesbian) who wants a baby but not a man use men as free sperm donors. In effect these women are stealing babies from fathers. If they really want this they will have to buy their sperm from a sperm bank where men have signed away their paternal rights. This prevents the woman from seeking child support from a man, who didn’t know he was a father, when the woman has financial problems. If the women can afford a sperm bank than she can probably afford to bring up a child on her own.
    2: To prevent welfare abuse by women who make an “under the table deal” with the father where the father will pay her half the normal child support if she claims the father is unknown on the birth certificate so she can get full child support from welfare. This would also prevent her from stealing babies just to get more welfare. It would also force men to be more diligent about birth control or they will be paying a lot of child support ( I’m sure you’ve heard about boastful men who say they have 9 kids and don’t pay child support to any ). Men would have to become more responsible and in control of their reproduction.

    3: To prevent the father from worrying that the child is not his. No longer will the father wonder if he’s paying for someone else’s child. No longer will the unconfirmed paternity of the child be a factor in spousal arguments. No longer will the mother be able to taunt the father during an argument with “Yea. Well the kid isn’t yours”. Of course if the father finds out the child is not his after the birth’s paternity test results he, the mother and the real father can decide how to proceed at that time.

    Admittedly this will cause some problems during the first few years of the laws implementation but our great society will adapt rather quickly. Men will insist on a safe oral male contraceptive be developed as quickly as possible. No longer will it be possible for women to sabotage men’s birth control by putting a pinhole in a condom when they want to get pregnant. Men will become more responsible about their financial support of their children thereby reducing the tax burden of welfare. Men and women will become more responsible about birth control if they don’t want to be faithful or burdened financially. And above all it will not be possible for a woman to steal a baby by denying a father his paternal rights. It just makes good sense.

    Thank You. God Bless America and Merry Christmas.

    Sincerely Yours,
    Mark L. Donaldson
    715 Woodfin Road
    Newport News, Va. 23605-1139

  13. I question the use of “vast majority” I’m a male lone parent, and would have always thought that life was the way you declare it. But I did stand up for my rights and now I and my DS have been living together for the past 8 years. I setup a web site to help other lone parents “male/female” with over 4m hits to date (must be doing something right).
    In Ireland we have 93,000+ lone parents getting and allowance every week and about a total of 154,000 LP in all, now been good to the men about 20,000 might have good access to there children that leave a lot “Now” If you have a march in Ireland or England how many fathers/mothers do you see on it, well for sure its no where near 70,000 or England 1million. Nothing in this world would ever stop me from been a part of my child lives, I’d go to the ends of the world, I’d look under ever stone and be in front of ever march there was. So where are the vast majority, most don’t give a shit, and its sad because the good guys are been painted with the same shity brush. Maybe if you march tell all these men to pay up and be there for their children, the good guys might have more luck. BTW most of the men who contact me are looking for ways out of paying maintenance, what child would need a father like that. When we bring children in to this world you are to give them your kidney or your life if need.

    A father who now see’s and lives life on the other side of the tracks

    James ([email protected]

  14. This is a huge problem. There are many groups working on it at present with limited success. Thank you for bringing it to your reader’s attention.

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