Now more than ever, there are a growing number of people who have brought children into existence, but do not actively live with them or parent them. In many countries around the globe, these absent parents are expected to provide financial support for the upbringing of the child, usually through payments to the other natural parent.
On the surface it seems like a reasonable model. Where it breaks down often however, is when there is such animosity between the two adults who once coupled to create the child, that the one doesn’t want to pay the other. When voluntary payments in good faith don’t work, in steps the legal system, court orders are created, and now it’s not just one parent expecting funds for the upbringing of the child, it’s the court system representing a province, a territory, a country.
While I’m not always a fan of generalizations, for the purposes of this blog, I must say that the usual situation is that the female who delivered the child usually ends up with custody and child-rearing while the male usually ends up being the one ordered to provide child care support. Let’s go with that. And this blog isn’t about the males who live up to their responsibilities. I applaud them on behalf of their children who may be too young to fully express their thanks.
No it’s the absent parents who don’t make their financial obligations that I’m looking at here. You no longer get along with the woman who you had sex and a child with? Fine. Nobody says you have to live with her, like her even; but that child who came into the world because you got her pregnant still needs to be fed, diapered, raised, schooled, enrolled in sports and arts, clothed etc. You’re not paying the mother as much as you are financially raising the child.
Sadly I find there are some men who are out of work by choice because if they do take jobs, their financial obligations check in, and they either have to make payments or their wages are automatically deducted for child support. If the guy is bitter, sometimes he says he’d rather not work at all than pay the woman. This is sad because rather than a win-win situation, this is just lose-lose-lose.
For starters, you’re obviously are making it a lot tougher on the child who had no responsibility for the fact his two biological parents split. Then there’s the mom who could use the support payments to raise the child and would have their own income for their own needs rather than stretching one income to cover two people’s needs alone. But really guys, there’s the another big loser in all of this and it’s you if you’re the absent dad refusing to work so you don’t have to make payments.
Essentially you are throwing away years of your own life, putting lots of energy and effort into avoiding work altogether, or minimizing your own financial health by taking low paying cash under-the-table jobs to avoid payments. Sorry but I just don’t side with you on this one. Man up, get a job, make your support payments, and work to be as financially successful as you can to better your life and the life of your child.
Now I’ve heard many of these dads talk about the injustice of it all. There’s those who call the mother a baby factory who has multiple children with numerous men just in order to trick guys into paying her support so she’s well off and never has to work. So my response is who made you have sex with her in the first place? Did you get to know her first, date awhile, or perhaps not think that decision to have sex through? Any responsibility there for that decision and the long-term consequences that in this case, might produce a child?
Yes it seems to me that the guys who don’t apply for good paying jobs to avoid making payments are throwing their own lives away; lives that could be rich, productive and fulfilling ones. So if you’re one of those dads keeping score of which arguments you’ve won or lost, put a big fat zero beside your name and a check mark under her name. But don’t blame her, blame yourself, because you’re the one making your employment or non-employment decisions.
The guys I applaud the most are the ones who through no fault of their own find themselves separated or divorced when they never wanted to be and have been ordered to make child support payments and do so. This could be where the female leaves for someone else, or just leaves period and takes the kids. This situation is hardest of all for the dad because not only does he lose his partner, he loses the children and is confined to visits. So good for you for paying support.
I think in a just society, it would be nice if a mom could look at her son or daughter and one day say, “Your father and I love you very much, but we couldn’t live together. Your father wants you to have all the things you need and that’s why he gives you money every month which helps you sleep and eat better and have a great start in life.” And that’s why you work and pay your support.