Monday, November 19, 2007

The problems with cohabitation and lack of biological parents in their kids' lives

There's an interesting AP story on the problems children experience when their living arrangements aren't comprised of their biological parents which is usually the case in cohabitation situations.

Cohabitation is a growing problem with people cohabiting in record numbers. Not only are there greater problems for the adults who cohabit but also for the children living in these cohabiting households.

I think a key factor is the self-centered focus of these relationships. Cohabiting provides many with what they view as an escape hatch. It's the "Things may change" or "I'll have to see how it works out" approach. The lack of commitment means less stable relationships and when children are present they can easily be viewed as an irritant to getting what "I want" which means the likelihood of child abuse increases.

As one person noted:

"I've seen many cases of physical and sexual abuse that come up with boyfriends, stepparents," said Eliana Gil, clinical director for the national abuse-prevention group Childhelp.

"It comes down to the fact they don't have a relationship established with these kids," she said. "Their primary interest is really the adult partner, and they may find themselves more irritated when there's a problem with the children."

Ultimately, many of the sexuality and reproductive issues, e.g. surrogacy, egg selling, type of sex education taught, marriage definition, etc., tie into the problems children are having in unstable family arrangements. The ideal is a child raised by both biological children in a lifelong relationship, e.g. marriage. Any policies which encourage deviation from the ideal shouldn't be promoted.

Of course, some will say "But that's not reality. " "We can't roll back the clock." That doesn't make sense. Of course we can't roll back the clock but we also don't have to accept the status quo if the status quo isn't good. What are the strategies for insuring more children are raised by their biological parents in a marriage relationship is the question we need to be asking.


Troy said...

Make divorce illegal and adultery a crime. That should do it AND adhere to the true principles the Bible espouses. Seems pretty clear to me.

Blogmole said...

Troy, I sense a note of sarcasm. That attitude isn't helpful.

Troy said...

Not at all. If that was the way it came across, I am sorry.

The book of leviticus has much to say about crimes against marriage and the consequences. I think most of us Christians are afraid to speak out about divorce and adultery because of its acceptance in society. We all have family members who fit into this group. What happened to preaching the entire Word of God instead of selectively choosing items that will reap political benefits.

We are far too focused on the homosexuals and far less concerned with strengthening existing marriages.