Me.Myself.and.Child

Posts tagged child support

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What’s the Big Deal About Child Support?

Even the words “child support” seem dark, almost as bad as “baby mama”. The words imply ugly court battles, and tend to lead to even darker words like “dead beat” and “gold digger”. 

But if you think about it, it doesn’t have to be that way.

My cousin had a beautiful son with a woman 7 years ago. To be honest, I’m not totally sure what the relationship between my cousin and this woman was—friendly for sure, but I’m not sure what their commitment level was. Anyway, when his son was born he offered to give her $800 a month. He even gave her his car while he was serving in Iraq for a year. “She is taking care of our son everyday. I’m going to give her whatever I can afford,” he told me. I was shocked.

Why was this so shocking? Because of my own experience, and friends’ experiences, I believed child support had to be court ordered, and frankly, it was a fight between “My child needs/deserves this money in order to have a comfortable life” and “This chick is trying to rob me.”

Unfortunately, for many of us, that’s exactly what it is.

It all boils down to two things:

1) Fathers (or noncustodial mothers) need to understand the costs involved in raising a child, and respect the commitment and sacrifices mothers are making to raise their children. This understanding should lead to a looser grip on the wallet.

2) Mothers (or custodial fathers) need to stop abusing child support. Now, I don’t mean a mother should spend every penny on their child. Part of the cost of raising a child is maintaining yourself/your household (i.e. you need a printer to print your resume for a job). That being said, there are a good number of mothers who use child support for unnecessary purchases that aren’t for their kids. Those women are giving a lot of us a bad name.

While I don’t see these issues ever actually changing, I do wish people would consider the whole circumstance before making “dead beat” and “gold digger” judgements.

Filed under child support baby mama dead beat gold digger money single mother