Births outside marriage

The following comes from the February 20 edition of World Magazine.

For the first time in American history, more than half of all births to American women under 30 are occurring outside of marriage.

That’s what Child Trends, analyzing data from the National Center for Health Statistics, found out. The New York Times reported this over the weekend with an apt lead: “It used to be called illegitimacy. Now it is the new normal.” 

This is more important than a trend, because trends are easy to reverse. This is an ooze, a sociological horror film that could be titled The Blob That Ate America. Ask no more why the lives of the next generation, on average, are likely to be more difficult economically (and in many other ways) than that of the baby boomers.

As Bowling Green State University researcher Susan L. Brown (and many others) have found, children born to married couples, on average, “experience better education, social, cognitive and behavioral outcomes” than others.

Many single moms try hard and are overwhelmed. The Times article ends with a vignette about one of them, Lisa Mercado, who is taking a nursing course and working an all-night job at a gas station, so she rarely sees her 6-year-old: “I want to do things with her, but I end up falling asleep.”

The sins of the fathers affect their children. The Times, explaining why some women don’t get married, noted, “Some unwed mothers cite the failures of their parents’ marriages as reasons to wait. Brittany Kidd was 13 when her father ran off with one of her mother’s friends, plunging her mother into depression and leaving the family financially unstable.

“Our family life was pretty perfect: a nice house, two cars, a dog and a cat,” she told the Times. “That stability just got knocked out like a window; it shattered.” Kidd, 21, added that she wouldn’t think of marrying her son’s father, who she said she loves: “I don’t want to wind up like my mom.”

To read the full story in World Magazine, Click here.



Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 2:01 AM By Debra
As soon as we allowed the US Government to teach and promote sex in the public schools, rather than leave this teaching at home with parents – – what do we expect? Children at younger and younger ages are taught about sex, and contraception (which of couse is not reliable). The social engineering of the Obama Administration has a goal of controlling all thought and activity of every individual – and become god to the people. When is the Times going to write the truth – abstainence from sex until married is best for all involved.

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 5:51 AM By Angelo
I still hold that this and many other ills plague the US because priests stopped condeming sin. Several decades ago priests who did lash out at offenses against God, were devoured by the liberals and punished by their Bishops. As a teenager I was on a sinning spree, until I heard a televangelist say what would happen to people like myself for eternity. Then a traditional priest was assighned to our parish and added the fullness of truth found only in the Catholic Church. I was one of the lucky ones. I feel sorry for the young, they have no one to guide them, they don’t know the truth about their actions and where it could land them for eternity. The leaders of the Church will answer to God for allowing his little ones to fall.

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 6:11 AM By JMJ
When people try to say that sin is personal and doesn’t affect others, they are in plain language; LIARS. Each sin, no matter what it may be, just spreads and spreads, and the more blessings that a person receives, the greater the sin (and punishment will be) which is why the sin of a Priest is greater than the sin of a layman, which is greater than the sin of a pagan. Brittany is a perfect example as she fell in the sin of lust, which produced (thankfully she didn’t kill her child) a child that is now fatherless or will be if he is still shacking up with him, as he will soon move on to greener pastures and as her son grows up, what will he be doing? Having sex with as many victims that he can get and destroying more and more lives, maybe using birth control or maybe not, which is another sin, upon sin. The sins of the fathers as mentioned in the Old Testament affects each and every one of us. As John the Baptist and Jesus tells us: REPENT AND SIN NO MORE!! +JMJ+

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 7:08 AM By JLS
Of all births, what portion associates with permanent couples and how does this correlate with legal marriage? Eg, a legally married couple has a baby and then splits up in a few years vs a couple not legally married who has a baby and ends up growing old together … What I’m getting at is the correlation of legal marriage to actual marriage regardless of religious affiliation. And then how does it look with various religious affiliations? Why is it that our standard has to be legal marriage, ie property rights vs eternal rites?

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 8:28 AM By Catholic Joe
Social Justice! If you really want to create social justice, start reversing this ominous, economically destructive trend! The traditional family is the MOST potent antidote to social injustice. WHY? Because it cuts to the root of the the problem.

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 8:37 AM By Laura
In my day, before the dinosaurs, these girls/women would be shunned and given, at a MINIMUM, disapproving looks. I say we go back to those days: Don’t give or ATTEND showers for illegitimate births; when a single woman tells you she’s pregnant, you can say, “Are you crazy?” or even more daring, “Shame on you. Are you putting the child up for adoption?” Oh, I know, I’ll hear all sorts of guff about being Christ-like and kind, but that is what’s gotten us into this mess: No one can express disapproval of another’s bad behavior without fear of being told to f*** off or being threatened with a lawsuit or physical violence – it’s not NICE to criticize another’s behavior. Once society lost these internal mechanisms, the result was predictable. Too much touchy-feely and “you’re okay, I’m okay,” and here we are. I, for one, am tired of pretending to be nice to these people so their feelings aren’t hurt. THEY are hurting their own innocent children, who didn’t ask for this. I’m tired of hearing people say, “You SHOULD go to the shower. The baby needs the help and he didn’t ask for this.” Sorry, but sometimes shunning and disapproval – by the MAJORITY of society – is the only thing that will work. These women will never get it, as it’s all about them: *I* don’t want to end up like MY parents; if *I* don’t put out (sex), no man will want me (everyone is doing it).” The MAJORITY of these women cannot be reasoned with, and our perverse society supports them, so they continue in their lifestyle. When are we going to take our society back, people? When?

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 8:52 AM By Tracy
Brittany Kidd say’s “I don’t want to wind up like my mom.” Wow! She has not only ended up like her mother, but worse, unlike her mother, she has willfully chosen to be “like her”. She can’t even see this! Sad.

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 9:12 AM By Bud
Children dragged into a lebian or gay household is tragic to the development in spite of the few relative successes. Children are being used as a pawn to cement a relationship only to denay the right of a child to the example of a mother and father. Worse yet, the entire agenda has been allowed to enter into every phase of American Life to the detriment of any moral anchor. Pray that O’bama and his supporters are banished from our country. Then only can the conditions be changed. Nothing but disrespect and denial of the Constitution and Federal Laws by O’bama has strengthened their efforts.

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 9:53 AM By Linda
I am old enough to remember when preachers wouldn’t remarry people who had been divorced! Now their kids don’t even bother to marry because they figure it will end in divorce!!!

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 10:15 AM By Catherine
Angelo, I’m sorry Angelo, there is a missing crucial element to your own posts. You cannot sweep this one under the rug. You have to be consistent when you accuse the leaders of the Catholic Church for failing to do their job. You, Angelo, yourself, cannot on one hand edify those who dissent from Catholic Church teaching on homosexuality and then on the other hand blame the Catholic Church leaders for not being faithful. *Consistency and Clarity* is a hallmark of our Catholic Faith.

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 10:53 AM By MIKE
Purchase a copy of the YOUCAT (Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church with a forward written by Pope Benedict) for each of your Jr and Sr High School children and grandchildren. We each have an obligation to insure that our young people know the truth. Instead of candy for Easter get them the book that can help save their eternal souls. No one knows how much time they will have upon this earth.

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 11:34 AM By k
Edify- to instruct or improve someone morally or intellectually. What would be wrong with edifying someone who dissents from Church teaching?

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 12:18 PM By Fredi D’Alessio
To Laura and others who, understandably, may be concerned that by embracing The Gabriel Project, our children might presume that conception outside of marriage is of no concern of ours and that they may become accustomed to yet another false teaching. To this I respond by pointing out that it is the responsibility of every parent and pastor to impart every teaching of the Church to our children. Every law of God is sacred and so too is every life He created. “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you…” (Jer 1:5). The life of a person conceived in the mind of God and then conceived in the womb of its mother is, always was and always will be sacred in the eyes of God. The fact that some mothers who seek our help may have conceived their child outside of marriage is no excuse for us not to be God’s instruments of love, mercy and peace to them and their children. That is another truth we must teach our children. We can reflect on the scripture narrative of the conversion of the Samaritan woman at the well. We can also reflect on the scripture passages of the Good Samaritan helping a stranger as well as the Visitation and the example of Blessed Mother Theresa.

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 1:49 PM By Aaron
None of us will be able to resolve this problem outside our own families; these little children need our help. The mothers don’t have time to work with them, give them tutoring about reading, good manners, holding your temper. Studies show that if these little kids can be exposed to some kind of care outside the home beginning at age 2, their probabilities for getting an education increase exponentially. Perhaps your parish can help by establishing an early learning program especially for 2 year olds, and be certain it serves minority families. Little black kids without a father are particularly vulnerable to dropping out of school, following a life of crime. Is it possible for us to lend a hand with a specific program? Who is willing to help?

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 4:45 PM By goodcause
Single parenthood, namely mothers, is also a major source of problems for boys. Secular society demonizes them and there is no strong male figure in their lives, which leaves to criminal behavior, drug and alcohol additoin, psychological problems, and their own future relationsihps that go busto. We need to get strong men back into the family unit. We also need to get parents to quit hitting their kids, which only teaches the kids that violence is OK. And three cheers to the Bishop of New Orleans for recently ending corporal punishment in his diocese’s schools.

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 8:41 PM By Linda Maria
America is morally and religiously completely ILLITERATE!! Her people need desperately to be taught religion and morals, as well as good manners, and many of life’s “basics!!” The “barbarians” all need to be “Christianized!!” Including the liberal, pseudo-intellectuals of all creeds!!

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 8:49 PM By JLS
What is the complicity between the Church and the government in marriage? Can a couple marry in a Wedding Mass if they do not have a civil marriage certificate? Does this need to be re-evaluated today?

Posted Wednesday, February 22, 2012 10:59 PM By Abeca Christian
MIKE excellent suggestion, add a bible too. And I suggest parents sit and actually read them with their children. Don’t let them collect dust. Lets pray that something will click. The outside forces are far too great, we need all the graces we can embrace. Once your kids turn teens, they have a whole new ball game to deal with, and yes parents, even when one teaches them well, they are human and some do go astray, don’t always blame the parents because you may never know, you may be blaming unjustly!

Posted Thursday, February 23, 2012 5:42 AM By k
Linda Maria, religious illiteracy has been written about. Your idea of moral illiteracy is a good one that I have not seen addressed anywhere else. Good point.

Posted Monday, February 27, 2012 10:03 AM By Anne T.
Children need both a mother and a father, Young women should think about this before getting sexual involved before marriage, and abortion is not the answer. It only adds one serious sin to another, and it is not easy to raise a child alone, and it is hard to offer one up to a couple for adoption, but most times that is the better of the two choices if one is young with no job and no education.There are people out there to help you at Birthright, the St. Juan Diego Women’s Society and many more pro-life crisis centers. One need only look them up in the phone book.

Posted Monday, February 27, 2012 12:51 PM By Anne T.
And young women need to remember that promises are not actions. Just because he promises to marry you, does not mean he will do it. As far as married men go, if he will cheat on her with you, he will cheat on you with someone else.

Posted Monday, February 27, 2012 12:53 PM By Anne T.
If we do all we can to help other people’s marriages stay together, our own have a better chance of success.

Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 11:19 AM By Abeca Christian
I know people are now saying “well at least she didn’t have an abortion.” Yes that is true BUT there is still a moral dilemma we can’t ignore nor water down, children out of wedlock grow up ten times higher repeating the same mistakes or worst. Just because they did not have an abortion doesn’t mean we stop preaching the good book and informing them that sex is meant for marriage. We need to teach them those important morals both equally to our young women and young men. Teaching them what lust is and what potential circumstances come with those sins, not to limit it with those reason but the main reason is also salvation issues.

Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 11:22 AM By Abeca Christian
Also the church needs to be that voice of reason and morality from a stronger vigilant stand! The outside forces are far great, now with the internet, liberal public schools, sex is everywhere and the movies promote sex outside of marriage very highly! We are fooling ourselves when we think that a few things will help because the problem is bigger than that, the outside forces have higher influence, so that is why the church needs to speak up louder and consistent to help the faithful to do right, it helps give them courage and that extra strength to love and respect themselves!

Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 11:26 AM By Abeca Christian
Just this morning when I was driving my younger kids to school, I home school my eldest child now, I was listening to the radio and there was a young woman who said that her boyfriend left her because she had strong moral values and decided to save herself for marriage. I often hear that now. The young men or boys what have you, are dumping young ladies because they won’t put out. This is a growing problem for ladies who want to follow God’s plan. This is why the church needs to teach men more on this issue and teach women self respect as well.

Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 11:34 AM By Abeca Christian
I wish there were a stronger message in the church, more programs that will validate and encourage young men and women to commit them selves to Chastity. I know it can be hard because as often as we try to commit to sex until marriage, after being dumped a great deal for not giving in, sometimes it can tear a person up. The support needs to come from a higher power, one that is heard repetitiously to help our youth to wait! We may not have the power to change the secular forces and their evil message but we can begin in house, helping and supporting our own from within the faith! So their powerful witness can make a difference on the outside and hopefully influence others to do the right thing, but we must be consistent in our message of love and purity in order for their witness to bear fruit and stay consistent. We are human and need consistency!

Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 1:01 PM By Abeca Christian
With all that said those in charge of our youth group programs, please read my posts and carry out that message of Chastity and purity by having more programs and talks! Our Priests and Bishops should take interest in our youth group programs and implement Chastity programs to encourage our youth well. Isn’t it obvious that parents need help from our church, our faith!!

Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 6:21 PM By Bob One
I agree. Kids should grow up in a home with a loving mother and father. But, tragically, that is not the norm anymore. So, now what do we do? Do we deal with the situation or do we keep talking about what use to be? I don’t know the answers; I wish I did. But if 40% of kids are growing up in single parent homes, we better have new ways of attracting them to our faith. The old ways won’t work. We need some experts to help us with (and I hate this term) how to “do church.” Any ideas?

Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 8:53 PM By k
abeca, something that also contributes is an attitude among parents to give their kids space. Teenagers that are being supervised dont have as many temptations.

Posted Tuesday, February 28, 2012 10:11 PM By Abeca Christian
Bob One what are you talking about? What old ways? The old ways dealt with the situation well in hand and thus needs to return and that begins with the church being more consistent in it’s message especially on the one of Chastity in Christ. It’s very apparent that due to the churches changes to meet the modern families, that is when things got worst! We must do it Christ’s way not man’s way! The authenticity of the faith should have those answers, even if it takes one person at a time!

Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 10:50 AM By Abeca Christian
k yes that is true. I noticed that parents neglect their kids often and allow them too many freedoms at an early age and that can be disastrous. I know my teens always tell me “but mum its not fair, their parents let them out all day, they trust them.” Kids use words to make us feel bad, of course we trust them but being out all day without knowing where they are or doing is neglect. Kids need supervision period! We parents that care have a harder job because we are constantly being challenged for doing the right thing all due to because many parents aren’t doing their job and they come across as the good guys and their friend. They are not! Kids need parents more now than a friend, their social life already provides them with friends, but not true parents!

Posted Wednesday, February 29, 2012 11:10 PM By k
abeca, kids don’t know what’s out there! Someday they will understand. I remember some of the things that happened to me as a teen or things I did never knowing what could happen. I hate to think about it, now. I had strict parents but I worked at night. Even at school, there were things we should have told our parents about, but we didn’t know enough to.

Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 11:06 PM By Abeca Christian
k kids get a lot of information thrown at them at a very young age. They probably have heard or seen more things than we have much earlier. I think that the more info they get whether it be bad or good, some kids learn from others mistakes but some kids just get the feeling that it won’t happen to them. They have not matured enough and sometimes too much exposure of secular stuff at too early of an age, can actually do more harm, the worst thing is when they are de-sensitized at an early age, their souls have been scandalized by sin. With kids it is not an all fits one size solution. They are impressionable young minds, some are stronger willed and some are weaker, sad to say. They need to know their self worth, chastity teachings are important.

Posted Thursday, March 01, 2012 11:12 PM By Abeca Christian
k a parent can only supervise as much as they can from a healthy measure. Earning their independence (kids) as they mature and as they prove what they can handle, a parent needs to be wise and discern those things. Kids are always being tempted even when they are supervised, like I have expressed before the outside influences are strong immoral forces and they are quite challenging. Depends on what weaknesses one has. Depending on the child.