In Singled Out, I devoted a chapter to debunking the myth that the children of single parents are doomed. I described various studies and showed how the results are exaggerated or misrepresented. I also reviewed studies inconsistent with the doom-and-gloom narrative; they, unfortunately, get little media attention.
New studies have been published since then, so I have continued to address the topic. There is also lots of panic around single parenting and some overwrought media stories and political proclamations. I’ve critiqued those, too.
In 2015, I put together a collection of my writings in Single Parents and Their Children: The Good News No One Ever Tells You.
Below are some articles I have written about single parents and their kids. There are also relevant sections in Singlism: What It Is, Why It Matters, and How to Stop It. (Paperback is here; ebook is here.) The Bedford Reader has included an adapted version of my Singled Out chapter on the children of single parents in each of the past two editions.
Enough with the Myth of the Doomed Kids and the Bashing of Single Parents; Let’s Have Some Facts
Attacks on single mothers and their kids: Scientifically-based grounds for skepticism
Children of single mothers: How do they really fare?
The children of single parents are doing better than you realized
10 myths about single people: Here are numbers 5, 6, and 7
The case for marriage is a sham
Adolescents raised by never-married moms in multigenerational households do better than kids raised by mom and dad
Dani McClain tells a different story about single black mothers
Divorcing and becoming a contented single parent: 6 stages
The Children Are Listening — and They Are Getting Stigmatized, Too
A child of a single parent asks, why the hurtful digs?
The Media Piles On – and Gets It Wrong
Deplorable article on the pathetic single-parent family and the awesome married one
TIME’s misleading cover story on marriage
USA Today’s big new story on marriage peddles same old fallacies
Time calls marriage a ‘luxury yacht;’ Remember what happened on the last cruise ship?
The Politics of Single Parenting
The “premier family form”: Ideology, shaming, and the misleading use of science
There are better ways to help children than trying to shame single parents into marrying
Should we care that more women are having children without having husbands?
‘Avoid marriage,’ advises Atlantic writer
“Marriage Vow”: Born into slavery? At least you had two parents
Shriver Report serves up compulsory marriage and mothering
Shriver’s ‘Woman’s Nation’ is actually a wife and mother’s nation: The evidence
Who are you going to believe — the National Marriage Project or your plants?
The Big Picture
It takes a single person to create a village
On tax breaks, emotional commitments, and the myth of the transformative power of marriage
Marriage fundamentalism is a threat to the dignity and well-being of single people and their families
Single moms: Less housework, more leisure, than married moms
Single mothers and their health, around the world
One parent can do just as good a job as two, women say
11 awful things you are doing to people when you shame them
PT blogger answers my questions about sex, single parenting, Steve Pinker, and stupidity
What anthropologists know about single people
For fun, see these mom memes from a partner.
The chapter, “Not-so-single parents,” in How We Live Now: Redefining Home and Family in the 21st Century