Single Parents

Word Count: 7406 |

THE PLAN

We were advised by our research supervisor that in research it is best to research a topic that you are passionate about, hence our choice of topic which is the Challenges that Single Parents face in Georgetown. After deliberating about who’s paper should be used as our groups assignment we all agreed that colleen’s paper presented itself with the opportunity for us to share with the readers of our assignment our findings, opinions and recommendations about a topic that is viewed in Georgetown the base area of this research and Guyana as a whole, as a very explicit one. In addition, we found it to be one of great interest to us as budding social workers. As well, when one speaks about single parents automatically it’s a topic that most certainly we all can relate to in so many ways. Being the child of a single parent family I have first hand knowledge about the challenges faced by this family type on a daily basis. Some of the constant challenges faced with in many instances ranges from financial to emotional lacking or dependency of the parent and the child or children.

In recent years there has been a visible rise in the number of single parent households in Guyana. With this rise has stemmed many social problems often times overlooked by persons who are not directly related. The single parent family has taken the place of the conventional nuclear family. It has become normal to be a member of a single parent family.

The single parent family may arise from a number of circumstances, one such the death of one parent; however the most common in recent years has been divorce. Divorce rates in Guyana have risen significantly in the last decade or so. Even though marriage is still a very significant observance, divorce on the other hand is becoming equally popular in this society today. One of the main reasons perceived why divorce is heading in this direction in Guyana, particularly is because of outside influence on our once conservative cultural beliefs. As ,if one should take into consideration the family prototype and divorce rates as recent as the 1970’s .One would find that divorce rates in Guyana was existent, however at a very low occurrence.

One such reason for this is because persons had to have a very unambiguous reason/s that the courts then justify and hence divorce would be granted based on those irrefutable facts. Nonetheless, in a comparative analysis with today’s divorce rate and occurrence, we believe that the court is not properly examining the reasons why married couples want to be divorced.
Hence leading this society into a sate of social depression as out of divorce arises several severe social problems, such as single parent mothers and fathers in most instances one parent is left with two to three children to fend for on a very low income .That one parent that the child/children are left behind with is the mother . A common practice since society assumes that children are better off with their mother, making the number of single parent homes predominately headed by a female person. A decision which in many instances automatically lead single parent homes into a state of financial or emotional dependency either on the state or family members. As divorce brings with it several numbers of social problems such as psychological, emotional and financial problems.

The adjustments necessary is tremendous and the scars left on each remaining member in the now single parent family are long lasting. First,children and the single parent have to adjust to their new home and environment , the parent have to seek employment and therefore having no time to commit to a healing process for themselves and their child/children. In most cases the healing process which is very significant for the parent and the children is neglected and this can leave very damaging consequence on the children and single parent life.
As it is believed that in order to proper function effectively as a single parent one have to make peace with the past and accept the reality of the situation. In, order to not get back into a similar situation. One reason why single parent mothers are constantly being abused by their new partner is because they did not take the time to heal their past hurt wounds and grew emotionally dependant and strong again on themselves, before getting involved with someone else.

Single parent therefore seeks another person attention for them to basically make them feel better about themselves once again. This must be noted that it is a very damaging path to take as it leads to them becoming emotionally dependant on their new partner. However there are a few single parents who totally refrain from getting involved with another partner as the fear and hurt is still very much alive in their lives. This is a direct result of not being able to access the appropriate psychological help they require to heal emotionally. Considering the situation in Guyana, where there is a very high level of divorce, but strangely enough there is present not even a handful of professional family and children psychologists. So basically the emotional needs of the children involved are not met. Hence if at some point in their lives that need is not fulfilled they tends to go thorough life feeling a sense of hurt, guilt, depression, betrayal and so on.

Which could alternatively lead them to a very destructive path, by using drugs and alcohol, smoking of cigarettes ect.In many cases the child/children often internalizes his/her hurt and pain which has great psychological effects. There is usually the visible drop in the child’s performance in school and sometime the child’s level of interaction with peers’ decreases. In many situations children becomes aggressive or withdrawn a form of acting out their internal feelings. As the literature sates some children would react and become very violent towards others and in some situation themselves; as children frequently blames themselves for the divorce of their parents.

This could lead to what is referred to as self destruction as sated above either at present or later on in their life if the appropriate psychological help is not applied. According, to theorists Sigmund Freud (1933/1965) in his (5) Psychosexual stages of Development, which outlined that the first five years in a child’s life as a critical phase in one’s development. He further stated if the child is abused physically, emotionally, or sexually; this can leave years of lasting scars on that child’s life’s development.

However in numerous occasions finding another partner is much easier. This can lead to the acceptance of abuse not only carried out on the mother, but in many cases world wide and in Georgetown which this study is focused on the child/children in the home.
The child/children in the abusive home are abused as well, sexually, physically or mentally, and shockingly enough the number of juvenile boys and girls in single parent homes that are sexually abused in this society is rapidly increasing.

There was an article not so long ago in the Chronicle News paper, where a man was on trial for raping and impregnating his adolescent step-daughter when she was below the age of sixteen years old at the time she got pregnant for him (her step-father).it’s quite evident that the sexual abuse had going on for some period before the pregnancy and during the pregnancy. The facts states that the mother of the child only found out about what was transpiring between her daughter and her partner in the home she shared with the man, after her teenage daughter give birth to a baby. upon questioning surrounding the father’s paternity of the child it was revealed by the adolescent that her step father used to have sex frequently with her; resulting in her bearing the child for him.

It has been pragmatic that women for whatever perceived idea, continue to allow abuse of all types to occur when they acquire knowledge about the occurrences of such. I can personally make reference to an episode of Oprah Winfrey’s popular television show Oprah, sometime last year she did a story on Sexual Abuse in single parent family setting. It was quite evident that the prevalence of such in the United States was at its high. The primary reason why we would like to use her findings as an example in this paper is because of the way/ways in which those women reacted after learning about the abuse that was been carried out on their child/children.

Many of those women stayed in the relationship for various reasons as was explained by them, in the case of one woman in her study, she stayed because she was pregnant and had only gotten married to her husband seven months prior to learning about the sexual abuse that was preformed on her two sons by her husband, the children unnatural father. She claimed that she stayed in the relationship not for financial gains, but because of the emotional attachment she had developed with her husband. Similarly, women in Georgetown are staying in these abusive homes and relationships in order to fulfill a need and that need, either is to ensure that their children are fed, clothed and basic bills are paid.

Or perhaps, these women are staying because of the emotional distress they experienced during either a divorce or separation from their previous partner. However it was observed that even though some women choose to stay in the relationship with that knowledge; often times the duration of their stay is very short lived. In most instances, when they take the chance to re-cerate a new relationship and a family setting for themselves and their child/children, they are basically trying to set things right, ease the hurt disappointment/s, shame ect. Not, only for the children but also for themselves. So ,basically those are some of the reasons why single parent homes in most instances sexual abuse are not accepted but paradoxically swept under the carpet and thus increase the reoccurrence of such in Georgetown in single parent homes.

In some cases the older girls in the family feels forced or encouraged to find boyfriends with adequate means to help her and her family; just a few weeks ago as I was reading one of the popular Guyanese Newspaper, and whilst doing so I came across a letter addressed to the columnist from a young woman, below the age of eighteen years; who was seeking advise on a situation which she was faced with. Basically the narrative was that she is involved sexually, but wanting to abandon the relationship with the young man presumable older than her.

Because of the fact that she is from a single parent household and claimed that her mother was not earning sufficient money to meet all her basic needs, and since she claimed that she was not qualify to get a decent paying job; she turned to the man in anticipation that he would at least help her with her basic needs. Something apparently he had not prepared to do. This is basically the reality in Georgetown today where numerous of young women who are from single parent homes and their parent is unable to provide for them passably.
They are being raped, forced into having sexual relations with men for money and even fooled into relationship because of financial promises by men who observed that either their financial situation is very poor or their family support system is non-existent and therefore their situation can easily be manipulated.

Many of these juvenile are being used in countless instances sexually, hoping like that young lady; the man would some how enable the betterment of their economic situation. A situation which basically abet the incidence of unwanted pregnancies, which follows with repeated abortions, an act that not only increases the chances of the young woman becoming more susceptible of acquiring certain types of cancer such as cervical cancer; but as well increases her chances of not being able to conceive a child in the distant future. In addition to acquiring cancer the risk of contracting HIV/AIDS and other serious STD’s (Sexually Transmitted Diseases) are very high. Already a catastrophic social problem this society is faced with especially in central locations.

On the other hand not only the young girls in the relationship suffers at the hands of separation; the impact it carries on young boys is tremendous as well; these young men are faced with the pressures of feeling some what of responsibility for their new family setting at a very early stage in their lives. A stage where should be in school and mapping out what they would like to become in the future; and working hard towards that goal. But because of being a child of a single parent he would feel a responsibility much too great for young children to carry, As it is quite a destructive one, in many cases the young man is not fully educated or skilled enough to acquire a decent paying job.

Hence, trying all sorts of odd jobs just to be able to provide for his family, in some cases this might be too strenuous or feel degrading for some young men to perform .hence leading him into a sate of desperation, as he would be naturally feeling a level of guilt and some level of disappointment towards him self. A desperation ultimately leading him to become involved in illegal activities to ensure the family his father left behind are properly fed and sheltered.

A specific reason why our streets are filled with crimes such as robberies and drug trafficking and our jails are over crowding with juvenile delinquents, I can relate this accurately in this paper for the readers to better understand the impact that single parent homes have on young men in this society today. As I am part of a treatment/task group based at the prison in Georgetown, and have been there for the past month. I’ve witnessed the influx of juvinel delinquents first hand. During our project approximately five persons left the compound, however just about three times that number of young offenders came into the correctional facility.

A statistic that is clearly sending a strong message, that message is candidly that our society in great social break down as the one true means that foster the stability and the development of our children, obviously the future of tomorrow no long is able to function effectively or maintain itself. Hence, because of this social problem; it is leading our youths to be locked away in a cell. Instead of being meaningfully involved in something that would aid the betterment of their lives; and therefore leads directly to the development of our country’s socio-economic condition.

The causes of divorce are many including abuse, alcoholism leading to abuse, infidelity, malicious desertion, irreconcilable differences and mutual choice to name a few ;but whatever the reason the right and choice was that of the parties involved but what happens there after. Child maintenance if sought after is usually insufficient. Since half or all of the house’s income has been removed, the standard of living has dropped significantly. An everyday struggle ensues for basic commodities like food, clothing and money for transportation and bills. Life becomes more of a struggle and sometimes there are no support systems available.
So what then? How do they cope? What methods do they employ for subsistence? Who’s there to help? What can be done? Theses are the questions we intended to get answered in this research.

Every single parent family has a story. Mine is unique to our experiences and survival tactics employed. But in such families where progress is being made the stories are touching and commendable and the parent like mine is seen praised for their achievement of raising a seemingly well adjusted child or children. But what about those families who never recover from the change? What about those who go from poor prior to single parenthood to devastatingly poor afterwards? How can we accuse them of making immoral choices without providing an alternative? How else can they survive? Who cares? Who has the time to cares?

In the face of adversity of any kind there are those who with will and determination will make it through successfully and there are those who falter and regress. So too is the case of single parent families. Some become stronger and work harder while others who seem to see no way out turn to acts of immorality for survival.

Generally in middle class single parent homes the parent tends to focus more on maintaining the standard. While there is the encouragement towards education the focus is usually the pot and the bills. With this detachment and decline in the relationship between parent and child/children stems a number of problems. These problems for girls are usually the attraction and attachment to older boys for comfort and companionship sometimes even for distraction. In these situations sex it inevitable and teenage pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases are major concerns. This is so too for girls of nuclear families but it occurs more with girls of single parent homes.

Many victims of teenage pregnancy are from single parent families or from extended families of which their single parent family is a part.

The focus for most single parent families is the nurturing and attention need by the children is not provided causing them to be more susceptible to peer pressure involving drinking, smoking, drugs, sex and crime.

In multi-sibling single parent homes the burden of responsibility is left on the older siblings causing some resentment since they don’t get the opportunity to engage in the activities they’d otherwise be able to engage in.

Some single mothers are employed as guards and have to work in the night leaving the children on their own in the night. These homes are more susceptible to rape and theft since it may be observed by deviants that the children are alone. In addition, this situation can also lead to deviance or the children, especially the older siblings who they might be tempted to invite a boyfriend or girlfriend over to engage in sexual activities.

The geographic community in which the research will be carried out will be central Georgetown where random persons will be asked to participate. This will hopefully allow for the recipients to be from a wide cross section of region four since people from all over the region conducts business in this area.

The community will include both men and women, people from all ethnicities, backgrounds, religions, places of work and they will be between the ages of approximately 28 – 48 years old.

This study seeks to identify the problems faced by single parents. It will also help to inform readers that there is an entire social community (single parents) who need special assistance sometimes. It will highlight that many social problem stem from persons who are from single parent families.

This research will benefit social work practice by providing up to date information on the problems faced by single parent families. It may also encourage those in the field to implement special support groups for single parent families. It may also promote help from supermarket owner to implement special prices for single parents among other things.

Individual who are single parents will realize that they are being thought of and work is being done to help them in they everyday plight. Other individual may be interested in assisting a single parent family after becoming aware of their situation.

The research team will benefit from the research experience. They will be the front runners of the beginning of a meaningful cause. They will be part of a team that will directly influence and enhance the lives of a large segment of society.

They people being researched will realize that they are not ignored and that people acknowledge their strength and effort and are willing to do something to help.

If single parents are helped in some form by this research the entire society will be positively affect. The development and happiness of society depends on every individual and this segment of society being so large will mark great progress.

According to Modules in Social Studies by Rampersaud Ramsawak, as the name suggest the single parent family consists of only one parent living with his or her child or children.

Coping mechanisms refer to the methods employed to deal with a demanding situation.

Random House Webster’s College Dictionary – hustle – slang, to earn one’s living by illicit or unethical means.

Some difficulties that are likely to arise in the data gathering process

I. Persons may not be willing to divulge certain information about their personal life.
II. Persons may not have the time to answer the questionnaire.

CHAPTER 2
Review of related literature

R. Ramsawak, Modules in Social Studies stated five functions of the family being reproduction, educational function, economical function, affectional function, cultural function and socialization. He also stated that the single parent family is one in which there is only one parent living with his or her child or children. The circumstance that cause the formation of the single parent family according to him are the death of one partner, broken down marriage by divorce or separation, a woman bearing a child for a man who refuses to marry her and who she refuses to “live” with and person with a child or children who chose not marry.

Ramsawak stated that some problems faced by single parent families are financial problems because now the total household income has been cut by half or more or in some cases removed completely, that is, if the parent with the child or children is unemployed. Neglect is another problem faced by a single parent family since the parent may be tied up with the demands of the job and have little time to interact after tending to the demands of the home. Thirdly conflict may arise between parent and child or children since all the responsibility is left to the parent who may have less tolerance for laziness or irresponsibility on the part of the children. The parent may become bitter and angry and the child or children may be the ones who feel the brunt of it.

I believe that these problems mark the breakdown of the functions of the family that occurs when a nuclear family become a single parent family. The single parent is unable to provide for the home while satisfying the emotional and affectional needs of the home in addition to be able to manage their own mental stability.

Gerard O’Donnell referred to single parent as the changing nature of the modern family. He believes that single parent families have taken the place of the conventional nuclear family. It is his conviction that this is largely in part to the rising numbers of divorces every year. He places emphasis on the effects of divorce on the children of single parent households. He believes the children of single parent households to be caught in the middle of the conflicts of divorce. He says the psychological cost of divorce cannot be estimated and that even though the welfare state provides a cushion of some sort for the single parent family it is inadequate and cannot supplement the need of some other needs like affection. I believe it also makes the receiver of the allowances may not feel good about having to be on welfare however it is a lot more than other third world countries can afford to do for single parent families. Like O’Donnell I believe the psychological effects of divorce are immeasurable. The parent need time to adjust, time which cannot be had since they have to work harder and implement other ways for the family to survive.

O’Donnell believes that, “children from single parent households do worse of than those of the traditional families in every area in which they are measured, psychologically, emotionally, behaviourally, educationally and economically.” He says that, “they tend to do worse at school, are more under nourished, suffer more from unemployment and are more prone to deviance and crime.” He said that it “is a social effect which is visible in each society. Children with two parents do better off than those with one.”

According to Hudson and Galaway in their book “Single Parent Families: Perspectives on Research and Policy” stated that, “a wealth of information has accumulated demonstrating the economic and social disadvantages suffered by lone parent families in particular the difficulties such parents face in achieving adequate living standards.”
They believe that “the economic and social support needs of all families centre on the resources required to fulfill the multiple tasks of parenting – providing satisfactory living standards as well as the time care and attention needed to foster children’s growth and development.”

Diversity in families 6th edition by Zinn and Eitzen stated that in the U.S. one quarter or 27% of children live in single parent homes. Furthermore half of all children spend some of their childhoods in single parent families (Children’s defense Fund, 1997:13).” In addition “one in five children spends their entire childhood in single parent household.”
They posited that the children of single parent households…have emotional difficulties because they have experienced the stress often traumatic that accompanied the separation or death of one of their parents.

Family celebration and hope in a world of change by Dr. Jo Boyden of UNESCO stated that, “between a quarter and a third of all households are headed by a single parent.” Dr. Boyden believes that, “life is difficult for a single parent, especially single mothers not least because of prejudice and social stigma. The sheer physical and emotional fatigue of raising children alone and trying to be the main source of both affection and authority at the same time drains morale.”

In Family challenges for the future, a United Nation publication, it referred to the single parent family as a reorganised family implying strongly that the ideal family type is that of the dual headed family or nuclear family type.

By its very nature the single parent family is potentially dysfunctional and is a minefield for disaster if strength of the individuals in this family does not take precedence of the everyday difficulty to survive.

The group came together on the 1st March, 2006.All members were present for class and after class we spoke to each other and each of us agreed to join the group

After speaking to Coleen who did this topic as her research proposal we all decided that hers was more appropriate and informational.

The group realized that this proposal was important and needed a lot of effort and as such we all pooled our resources and combined our efforts into doing this project.

Everyone was tasked with a certain responsibility and if someone was unable to fulfill their task and have an understandable excuse we all would help that person.

Our group did not face any problem in doing this research because persons were very co-operative towards us In our venture of fact findings persons voluntary gave information and experiences of their problem which was of significant importance to our proposal. They weren’t any barriers in doing this project. Person were cooperative because they felt happy and thought of that we took the time to study and listen to their problems and concerns as single parents in Georgetown.

The group was eager to learn of the experiences that single parents are faced with and due to the positive feedback and encouragement we received after speaking to several persons about our research topic it made doing this proposal very simple. All our imformation was in an organized manner, everyone knew what part they had to play.

During the data collection phase persons were very co-operative and supportive and as soon we asked questions persons were willing to answer and were very responsive to us. Transportation was not as simple was had expected because of the geographic location of our subjects.

In a comparative analysis, we found that persons who lives in areas such as Albouystown, Le Penitence, Ruimvelt etc were more willing and helpful in expressing their concerns and problems with us than those living in areas such as Lamaha Gardens, Queenstown, Bel Air Park. The difference of class and statuse had a lot to play in our data collection. Not everyone in Geogetown wanted to shed their story cause of their pride.

CHAPTER III

The Diary

Date: 1st March, 2007
All members were present.

At this meeting we introduced ourselves. An understanding was made for everyone to always be present for our group meetings cause this assignment is very important and need a lot of time and attention.We stated what topic each of us had individually done. We then analyze and discussed which proposal would be the better one. After much deliberation, we came to a consensus that Coleen’s proposal was a better choice because it was more informational and as such it was chosen.It was Latoya’s that convinced everyone why they should do that particular proposal.

Date: 8 th March, 2007
Group members were present:
Latoya
Antionette
Shefield
Colleen

At this meeting, the group members discussed strategies and possible sources of getting the information, what is the best location for us to research. We also debated whether or not to include males or to primarily focus on females but eventually we realized that we were being bias towards men and as such we quickly changed our minds and focused on both males and females.The group members decided that the data gathering method to be used would take the format of focus interviews and questionnaires.

Date 15th March, 2007
Members Present
: Antionette
Lotoya
Chafield
Colleen

Due to the members busy schedule, everyone decided to forego the questionnaire and opted for the focus interview for all of the respondents as a means of gathering information for us to complete the proposal. And also we started to formulated the research question which is “What are the challenges and coping mechanism of single parents in Georgetown and how can they be addressed”

Date 22nd March 2007
All members were present

The consent form was done at this meeting. Using the one that Mr. Fields had given to the class, we used it as a compass to guide us on how to draft our form for it to be signed by the interviewees which was very significant to our assignment. From the format that Mr. Fields gave to us, we made some corrections which were used for the final draft.

Date 29th March, 2007
Group members were present

Group members met for a brief time to discuss how everyone was coming with their assignment and whether they need help to attain information.

Date: 31st March, 2007
Group members were present

Members were suppose to present themselves to Mr. Fields to give an update about the project but due to the time frames of everyone not all of them were able to be present and as such it was decided that we would start our project and then we would speak to him but every time we made attempt to go to his office he’s not there. So we had to do the project on our own without the help and guidance of Mr. Fields and this was a major set back for the group members.

Date: 5th April,2007
Group members were present.

Group members met to discuss the arrangement of where the interviews would be held. and their was some deliberation as to whose home is available but no one wanted the interviews to be held at their home so instead we all came to a consensus that we will go to the homes of the persons being interviewed.

Date: April 10th, 2007
Group members were present.

This was a brief meeting we met to select the persons that were going to interviewed. We picked like about 25 persons for this 15 being females and 10 males. After all the interviews were complete, the gropu members assembled on campus the following Monday to discuss the information collected on the 21st and we also informaed each other about their progress that we made on Saturday. It was said that all 25 interviews went well with the single parents. It was on the same Monday evening we all decided to start our data gatjering all the group members were present at the group meeting and it was deciding that it was the right thing to do since time was against us due to our exams and presentations. A meeting place and time was decided on.

Date: April 25th, 2007
Group members were present.

We met at our group member Shefield home and began the final analysis of all the information gathered on the 21st in the preparation for the typing of the completed assignment Shefield and Latoya looked at the males information and Colleen and Antionette looked at the females information.

Date: 30th April, 2007
Group members were present.

Members met on this day to go over final analysis and began the final compilation of the information form the research.

Date: 2nd May, 2007
Group members were working very hard to complete the project. We were at Shefield home to do the final typing of the project making changes and correction to the research.

Chapter IV

Findings Analysis and Evaluation

Single parents’ homes have always been present in our society. Due to the lack of research conducted on this specific issue in this society ,many persons are not aware of the percentage of single parents living in Georgetown which have grown over the recent years. Based on information gathered the researchers recognized that this form of life style have been accepted widely in society, however there are some skepticism on whether or not the child receives the needed love and attention from both parents although that is required for him or her to grow up into a well groomed individual which have successfully passed all the stages of both physical and psychosocial stages of development which is very important in ones identity and how that person will progress in life.

In addition to such we have also recognized that in most instances the homes are headed by the female which create a financial dependency on others either the state or family members the main reason for this is because either these women are not fully educated they are working for minimal wages which is inadequate to reach all the needs of herself and her family. Hence, leading in most cases her children to get involved in relationship at a tender age as a means of acquiring their basic financial needs ( attached is an article identifying such realistic example) .

It has been an observed trend that females at an early stage try to create new relationships with men in order to reach their basic financial needs and wants. Women tend also to become promiscuous. They tend to loose to some extent their self respect as an individual or mother due to financial obligations and may not seek assistance from either the Human Service Ministry or family members because of the fear of being insulted and rejected.

When asked why they prefer to do odd jobs or be promiscuous the response was that prostitution would generate a faster earned income than rather working long hours for poor wages.

However on the other hand their some single parents who would rather work odd jobs and work honestly to maintain a good reputation for their children to live in society and to be proud of their effortless determination towards their children development.

Emotionally, single parents are vulnerable to becoming attached too easily to the person of the opposite sex because they want to fulfill their for both material and emotional comfort.

SINGLE PARENTS FOCUS INTERVIEW

1. Age Range 28 – 32  33 – 37  38 – 42  43 – 47 

2. Ethnicity African descent  Indian descent  Amerindian descent  Portuguese  Mixed 

3. Religion Christian  Hindu  Muslim  Other, please state 

4. How many children do you have? ________

5. Do you have any children under the age of (1) one years old?
Yes  No 

6. If yes, how much months old are your child/children?
Below 3 months  below 6 months  below 9 months  below 12 months 

7. How long has your family been a single parent one?
__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

8. What were the circumstance surrounding it become a single parent family?
Death  Divorce  Personal Choice  other, please state
____________________________________________________________________

9. If alive, does the father/mother of your children provide financially for them?
Yes  No 

10. If yes, did you had to file at the court for maintenance to be provided before he/she began providing for them? Yes  No 

11. Is your income sufficient for the basic needs of your family?
Yes  No 

12. Do you receive assistance from family, friends and neighbors in Guyana?
Yes  No

13. If yes, how so do you average you receive on a monthly basis?
________________________________________________________________

14. Do receive assistance from family members overseas?
Yes  No 

15. If yes, how much do you receive and how often?
_____________________________________________________________________

16. Have you experience any of the following difficulties since you’ve become a single parent?
 Insufficient money for transportation.
 Insufficient money for meals for your family.
 Insufficient money for basic clothing.
 Unable to pay any bills
 insufficient money to have your child participates in school activities.
Others, please state
_____________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________

17. Have your children done any better or worse in school since you becoming a single parent family? Better  Worse 

18. Have you noticed a change in the behaviour or personality of your child/children since becoming a single parent family?

Yes  No 

19. If yes, please state
________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

20. (A) if alive, how often do your child/children spend quality time with the non resident parent?
________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

b) Was it by your request, the other parent’s request or the child/children’s request?
________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

21. Have your expectations for the future changed? Why?
Yes  No 

22. If yes, please state reason/s?
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

23. Do you have any fears of being a single parent?
Yes  No 

24. If yes, please state what fears do you have as a result of being a single parent?
______________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________
25. If no, please state why you don’t have any fears of being a single parent?
___________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________

26. Are you able to spend quality time with your children?
Always  not at all  rarely  Sometimes 

27. Do any of the following apply to you?
 too tired to help your child/children with homework
 always quarrelling with child/children
 never have time for you
 Try to spend time with children once a week
 Work at nights
 Have two or more jobs
 Seeing/dating someone
 House wife
 Have child/children at the University
 cannot afford to send your child/children to University
 Throw box
 Save regularly
 Want to return to school
 Want to return to school but cannot afford it
 Feel Happy
 Feel Sad
 Feel Depressed
 Indifferent, just trying to make ends meet
If other, please state ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

28. Do you plan to get married or live with partner in the future again?
Yes  No 

29. If yes, please state your reasons why you would like to do so again.
____________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________________

30. If no, please state why you would not like to do so again.
____________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________________

Bibliography

O’Donnell, Gerard. (1994), Mastering Sociology, Third Edition. Malaysia, MacMillan Press Ltd.

Ramsawak, Rampersaud (1996), Modules in Social Studies. Trinidad W.I., Caribbean Educational Publishers Ltd.

Boyden, Jo (1993), Families: Celebration and hope in a world of change. New York, Facts on File Publishers

1996, Family Challenges for the Future, New York, United Nations publications

Zinn, Marine B& Eitzen, D. Stanley (2002), Diversity in Families Sixth Edition. Boston, A Pearson Education Company

Hudson, Joe & Galaway, Burt (1993), Single Parent Families: Perspectives on Research and Policy, Thompson Educational Publishing’s, Inc

Conclusion

It can be concluded that single parenting is becoming far more prevalent in today’s society compared to recent years. Due to the fact that many persons are choosing or reaslising that they no longer desire to be with a partner.Also the economic factor is to be blamed for a number of males running away from family responsibllity. In other circumstance women leave their martial home is because their expectations of family is not met.

Although single parent homes cannot be eradicated, emphasis must be placed that the occurrences can be minimized to an extent.

Recommendations.

This problem can be seen as both a social and economic driven problem due to the fact that both men and women responsible for the maintenance of the primary needs and function of the family structure.

Hence, we have come up with a few recommendation to help tailor this socail problem:
 Government need to play a more active role in maintaining the family structure which is the back bone of society by allocating more funds.

ETHNICITY OF SINGLE PARENTING

HISTOGRAM

How they became single parent

Chart showing how Single parenting has risen from 1990- 2007

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