I have been scrutinizing the research on single parents and their children for more than a decade. I’ve learned lots of things, but perhaps the most important one is this: all those predictions you hear about how the children of single parents are doomed are grossly exaggerated or just plain wrong.
Some years back, there was a time when I was getting so many comments and emails from single people who were not feeling welcome in their places of worship that I started a series of posts on the topic. I wrote an introduction to the series, and then each post after that began with the question, “Which religions are welcoming to singles?” and continued with the answers from a particular religion. I didn’t write anything but the introduction – I don’t have the expertise. Instead, I invited people with expertise in different religions to answer some of the questions that readers of my Singled Out book and my Psychology Today blog had been asking me. As you will see below, I got answers from people with expertise in Judaism, Christian ministries, and Catholicism.
“White privilege” and “male privilege” are familiar concepts in our cultural conversations. There is, however, another vast swath of unearned privileges that have gone largely unrecognized, even though they unfairly advantage about half of the adult population in the United States. We’re talking about marital privileges. People who marry enjoy social, cultural, economic, and political advantages that single people do not, simply because they are married.
Questions about singles in the workplace are coming up more and more often. That’s a good thing. For too long, conversations about the workplace, and about achieving “balance,” have focused on people who are married with children.
Here, I have put together a collection of links to various discussions (mostly mine) of singles in the workplace. There are four sections: two on the issues facing singles in the workplace, one on single people’s values, and one on possible actions that can be taken to create better workplaces for single people.
Over the course of many years writing about single life, I have found that readers are very interested in the experiences of single people in places beyond the U.S. So am I, but I don’t know nearly as much as I would like to. I have had some help with that from guest bloggers. Also, when relevant articles appear in the news, I blog about them.
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.