"Children are a gift from the Lord; " Psalms 127:3 NLT
As young adults in the USA are breaking with more traditional thinking, it follows that more non- traditional trends are going to emerge. One such newer trend that has had researchers concerned for decades is the sharply rising number of children being born into single-parent households in the USA. (2 to 5 times that of several other countries)
During the decades from 1980 to 2020, the rising number of births outside of marriage and the decrease in the number of marriages in the USA has caused the USA to now lead the world in having the highest rate of children being born into single-parent households in the world.
The research shows that United States has one-in-four children (25%) born into single-parent households compared to one in fourteen (7%) for the rest of the world. (average for 130 countries - example: China - 3%, Nigeria - 4%, India - 5%).* (Note - 2020 estimate indicates USA is rapidly trending toward of 40% single-parent households)
Further, 83% of the USA single-parent households have a female head-of-household, most of whom live in poverty.
All of the current data is cause for concern, but two aspects are particularly unsettling to Christians:
1. Christian children in the USA are now twice as likely to be born into a single-parent household and raised in poverty, as are the children identified as non-Christian.
2. Although it has been known that children raised without a father are much more prone to displaying behavioral problems, a 2017 study (Journal of Pediatrics) indicated that children who lost fathers before the age of five suffer certain chromosome damage (DNA), which could be the reason for their behavioral problems.**
President John Kennedy stated that children are the most important investment in our nation's future. Since 80% of these children of single-parent households will be raised in poverty, let us pray for the spiritual, physical and mental well being of all of these children and for our nation.
"I believe that what we become depends on what our fathers teach us at odd moments, when they aren’t trying to teach us. We are formed by little scraps of wisdom." –Umberto Eco
*"U.S. has world’s highest rate of children living in single-parent households" byStephanie Kramer, 12/19/2019 - Pew Research Center - pewresearch.org/fact-tan
** "US Children more likely to be raised in single parent homes: PEW", by Michael Gryboski - CP World, 12/19/2019