7 out of 10 Americans Think Single Mothers Are Bad for Society

A new Pew Study finds that “Even though most Americans have grown more comfortable with same-sex or unmarried couples raising children, they still view single mothers as detrimental to society, according to a new poll of attitudes toward the country’s soaring number of nontraditional families.” 40% of births are to unmarried women in this country. A Washington Post article on the Pew study reports: 

“Andrew Cherlin, a Johns Hopkins University sociologist who studies families, said the Pew poll underscores the widespread acceptance of two-parent families of almost any ilk.

“Working mothers are acceptable to almost everybody,” he said. “Two parents who are unmarried are tolerated or acceptable. But many people, including single parents themselves, question single-parent families. There’s still a strong belief that children need two parents.”

As the mother of two small children, I agree that two parents are ideal. It’s simply too much work to take care of children and provide for them. But this study seems to speak to a moral judgement against single motherhood that judges women harshly. As a blogger friend wrote, no one thinks deadbeat dads are good for society for they don’t construct surveys around that question, do they?

On Pew’s website, you can take a survey on your opinions on the changing American family and see how you stack up against the Pew sample.