Faced By Single Parents
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Different aspects of Chinese culture are manipulated to contribute to the difficult situation of single parent families; whereby, traditional family values and family relationships are both an asset and liability to single parent families. In this case, the parental role identity need to be flexible rather than traditional gendered role identity need to be facilitate in the adjustment of divorced parents. For the welfare services to be empowering there are some critical aspects that need to be considered such as selective traditional Chinese values and cultures and the resolution of the ideological dilemma in welfare policy.
Routine services are the services that help single families to overcome their difficulties with sufficient resources should be explored. Benefits should be provided in a way that it can able to help the families such as housing and education allowances for the low income families. Effectiveness of the provision on welfare benefits in helping the families to develop competence and independence should be evaluate in a crucial way in order that the families are able to gain further competence and independence through the temporary assistance of welfare.
Family friendly work policy has to be supported. The policy reforms in work or family policy which recognizes the legitimacy of employees' family involvement that will largely reduce the dual role dilemma of the single parents. The hidden structural problems that increase welfare dependence rate should be addressed in addition to the enhancement of individual skills and competence. For example, flexible time, childcare provision and; support and parental leave as part of the benefit to all families including single parent families are implemented in some European countries.
Cairney, J., Boyle, M., Offord. D. R., & Racine. Y. (2003). Stress, social support and depression in single and married mothers. Soc Psychiatry Epidemiol 38, 442-449.
Stress and social supports are the important mediators of the relationship between single and married mothers. The effect of life events in depression was stronger for married mother compared to single mothers because they are less reactive to negative events due to the experience significant chronic stresses and strains. Single mothers have used to dealing with adversity and less affected by negative events compare to married mothers who are lack of experience of the adversity.
Social support to have a relatively impact in terms of explaining the link between family structure and mental well-being. Among the three variables, social support was the only significant variable in the research that stated social stressors have an impact of accounting for the relationship between single parent status and depression compare to the previous research found financial problem to be the main factor in the relationship between single parent status and psychological well-being.
Additional knowledge regarding single parenthood and depression are being gained in this research but the nature of the inter-relationship between family structure, stress, social support and depression remains unclear. However, not only an effect relationship exists between single parent status and depression but the changes in stress and social support over time may lead to changes in psychological well-being. The impact of moving into and out of single parenthood will help us in a better understanding of the consequences of taking up the single parent role and the factors that might occur in and out of this status.
Gladow, N. W., & Ray, M. P. (1986). The impact of informal support systems on the well being of low income single parents. Family Relations 35, 113-123.
Different types of support affect different aspects of well being. Thus, informal support systems do have a positive impact on well being of low income single parents. For example, support from friends and relatives make a unique contribution to reduce the problems of single parents lives where low income single parents can rely on the both parties for support that can lead to reduce the problems they are going to face. Support from friends appears to have the greatest impact on reducing loneliness but then support from relatives is not related to loneliness. This might happen because friends provide more opportunity for free and open conversations that individual feels not so comfortable discussing it with relatives.
Besides that, support systems outside the nuclear family can have a very positive effect on the well being of low income single parent families such as social workers, family therapists, counselors and other professionals who can assure single parents that it is both human and helpful to need and rely on supports outside the nuclear family. Furthermore, agency programs designed to provide specific needs such as food, housing and maintenance. It is a good way if the agency workers can refer the low income single parents in groups to provide social support and building supportive relationships among the single parents. Group counseling for single parents through mental health centers can be established if the single parents' groups might not provide the type of support that are needed by the populations.
Webber, R., & Boromeo, D. (2005). The sole parent family: family and support networks. Australian Journal of Social Issues 40(2), 269-283.
Ten participants, nine of them saw that support networks as having an essential role to play in their personal well-being and support the children in the initial stages. Support was accessed from different sources including friends, relatives, colleagues, government agencies and social welfare agencies and support can involves different things such as emotional support, practical support (baby sitting, financial, advice and household repairs). Friends and relatives contribute a large amount in emotional and practical supports. Thus, supports will change according when the needs changed.
Supports was seek and attained among community and friendship networks. Various counseling such as individual counseling, family counseling or family therapy was perceived to be the most effect one that are recommended to assist the extended family in going through terms with sorrow and relationship issues. Nevertheless, family and community support are the important factors in healthy families but then most of the participants are not satisfied with the quality of family support when it was provided in a low or critical way. As the result, parents do not cause the separation to feel the contempt of the family members and people who experienced negatively from relatives and friend tend to set a distance to those who do not validate their new status as a single parent.
Grossman, C. C., Hudson, D. B., Lefler, R. K., & Fleck, M. O. (2005). Community leaders' perceptions of single, low-income mothers' needs and concerns for social support. Journal of Community Health Nursing 22(4), 241-257
Social support theory, a framework used to develop focus group inquiry questions. From the group discussion by the community leaders, the needs and concerns of single, low-income mothers are social support issue, personal barriers to success and system barriers. Social support issues such as single mother needs verbal and non-verbal contact with relatives, friends and health care professionals. Needs of informational supports for single mothers including parent responsibilities, infant care tasks and resources that are available can help single mother to increase their level of parenting.
Tangible support for single mothers including housing, food, financial, child care and transportation are important. This are supported by House (1981) and Revenson et al. (1991) stated that when tangible support needs are greater than available resources, individuals will experience poor physical and emotional health outcomes. Last but not least, nursing care can identify and use standardized instruments to assess mothers' needs and concerns besides on the nurses' intuitive perception. Community health nurses are professional in providing single, low-income mothers with informational support, appraisal and emotional support.
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