Father’s who exit from their children’s lives should feel society’s disapproval and be stigmatised like drink drivers says David Cameron in The Sunday Telegraph.
This statement assumes that all absent fathers are solely responsible for the position their children are in. Some are indeed feckless, but not all.
What about mothers who make contact difficult? Who alienate their children from their father? Who devote their time to ruining contact, to making children feel guilty and who keep a bitter argument going for years? Some of these are the same single mothers who are roundly praised for bringing up children alone.
If David Cameron truly wants fathers to play a full role in their children’s lives perhaps the balance of power should be adjusted? That, after all, was why parental responsibility was brought into effect and why the terms custody and access were changed to residence and contact.
Some Governments assume fifty-fifty shared care on separation. Would this work here? Some fathers are not interested in having such a role but many are. If children have regular contact with their non-resident parent they virtually have two homes in any event. This would have a direct impact on finances. Many mothers would be reluctant to accept this due to a significant loss of income.
Maybe the whole children’s tax credit situation needs to be redesigned? It amazes me the amount people are paid to work less provided they have children – this whole system encourages single parenting and has developed the 16 hour working week. What are children growing up in such an environment to think? Oh yes, we have one of the highest rates of teenage pregnancies in Europe…