Intimate Reflections - Sex, the ugly side (Pt 2)
I'm going to address something that has been a huge problem throughout America, particularly Black America. This may be a little tough, but in order to reverse course it's a conversation that needs to occur. Out of Wedlock Pregnancies (OOWP) is very common in our culture. It has become so common that society sees it as normal because of the frequency that it occurs, but it shouldn’t be considered normal. OOWP has some real consequences and pitfalls that must be identified. Let’s consider the genetically/metaphysical, financial, and spiritual effects of OOWP and, by extension, single parenthood.
(1) Genetic/metaphysical – you are always connected to the person you procreated with. Consider this; even if you were to get married to another person (not the mother/father of your child) the fact still remains that your DNA mixed with his/hers created this child. To add to the responsibilities of sustaining the family you started when you got married, you have to extend outside of the family to care for your other child(ren). That situation can be exacerbated, causing unnecessary stress on you, when the other parent is a deadbeat dad, an unfit mother, or has resentment for how the relationship ended (the ex may be bitter because they believed you and her/him were going to jump the broom). If the child is left in their custody, there may be some hardships involved in seeing your child.
(2) Financial – kids aren’t cheap by any stretch of the imagination. Are you financially ready to be a parent? Do you have the finances to tackle all of the child’s needs? Clothes, food, medical care, crib, etc.? Imagine the struggle for the parent that has custody, and how they have to make tough decisions to provide for the child. Are you prepared to find a better paying job to provide for your child? How many children have been/are being born and raised in poverty because we just wanted the thrill of sex? These are the things you have to consider.
(3) Spiritual – I believe that a lot of damage in this area has been done because of the lack of self-control and lack of respect for God’s design of sex in this area.
(a) (Men) – was she ready to be a mother? What if she, just like you, wasn’t ready for that responsibility? Imagine the mother of your child still trying to figure out what it means to be a woman. She hasn’t yet grasped what authentic womanhood is and how she should/will mold herself under that ideology, and because of our desire to have sex (sometimes with no protection) we thrust her into a duty that she wasn’t prepared for. Since we just had to have sex, we end up wrecking her world (potentially). The situation can go from bad to worse if she gives birth to a son. To add to her compromised identity, she now must wrestle of how to raise this young boy into a man. That by itself is a tall task because (1) she’s not a man (2) she doesn’t have to battle with controlling an over-abundance of testosterone, and (3) she may not have seen authentic manhood on display in her family, neighborhood, or church. Yet many women in our society have been launched into single motherhood because we wouldn’t deny our penis.
(b) (Women) – are you sure he will be around if you were to become pregnant? What promise do you have that he will be a father your child(ren) need? We must be honest about the part you play in OOWP. There are way too many buffoons, idiots, scrubs, etc. becoming fathers when they shouldn’t. That is a result of how we view sex, and we must acknowledge that you have given yourselves to men who weren’t ready, or deserving of an intimate connection with you. Part of the problem is that you don’t know what authentic manhood looks like. Maybe you’ve never experienced it before; maybe you’ve never interacted with it. All you’ve known or seen is the examples of guys that we thought were men, or what society has put before you as manliness. Maybe that’s how you got caught up, and maybe that’s how you end up with many emotional wounds and scars. Those wounds from your inappropriate dealings with pseudo-men can have long enduring effects not only on you, but with your children as well. Ladies if you’re truly honest with yourself, a lot of us may still harbor lingering insecurities or emotional trauma from years ago that will disrupt our ability to connect with, and nurture our child. We’ve seen these examples time and time again of a single mother who has a fractured or non-existent relationship with the father, and that causes her to view her child as a burden instead of a blessing as the bible says. Are you still dealing with those insecurities?
Please understand this is not a post bashing single mothers, but we must see our family situation for what it is. OOWP is not what God originally intended for us, it's a substandard consolation prize. It's settling for an incomplete, separated family. Addressing the elephant in the room is necessary to eventually change our societal norms regarding family and sex. If we don't address it, we will continue to rob our children of a complete, balanced family.
Grace and Peace.