The last article discussed bonding at birth and after: bonding between parent and baby, and between husband and wife. What we are really talking about is quality parenting and quality marriages and relationships. The ideal way to do parenting, for the average person, is to do it with a dedicated, healthy partner. It is great if a baby can have 2 great, healthy parents. It is great if a female baby can have a great female role model. It is great if a male baby can have a great male role model. It is good for a child to see 2 people model a great relationship, and to model love, working together as a team effectively. We do want our children to see a great romantic relationship, so that they can be better prepared and motivated to do that when they are grown. But if they don’t, the child can always study and learn how to do relationships later.
These days, of course, lots of women are single parenting, choosing to have a child outside of marriage, or single parenting after a divorce. Research has shown that this option can be just as healthy and effective if done in a quality way. It is actually healthier than having a family where one parent in the home is not emotionally/mentally healthy, or is abusive/neglectful. Remember abuse/neglect includes emotional, verbal, physical. Abuse/neglect by one parent not only affects the child negatively, it affects the other parent negatively.
If a single parent has plenty of money, it is easier to single parent because she can pay for support systems, and the other needs of the child, and the needs of the mother, and add in recreation and fun. Having money and resources does make single parenting easier and less stressful.
I worked with abusive/neglectful parents. It is usually best to remove the abusive parent from the home. Also, if a parent knows that their child is being abused by the other parent and does nothing to get help or stop the behavior, that parent is also guilty of abuse/neglect, unless they have been threatened. The healthy parent in that home needs to know that it is healthier to parent alone than to parent with an unhealthy person. Studies have shown that as long as a child has one very healthy, strong, loving parent, and no negative/neglectful/bad parent in the home, they will do fine. So, it is better to parent alone than to try to parent with an unhealthy person, or an unhealthy relationship in the home. Home, for a child, and for a person, means peace, love, mutual nurturing, support, trust, security, feeling safe, sharing, caring, encouragement, learning, growing, contributing… When a man and a woman live together without a great relationship, and try to parent with one parent/partner being a bad parent or partner, there will instead be tension and instability in the home. The above things are not present. It is then better to parent alone, and live without that person in the home.
Also, it is important to remember that living with a bad partner/bad relationship affects the woman negatively. It is hard to be a good parent when you are being dragged down by negative energy, stress, poor behavior, or a dead-beat who expects to be waited on and does not do their part in the relationship. You also do not want the child to grow up with that negative energy, and seeing an unhappy mother, unhappy relationship.
So, a single parent home can be just as quality as a two-parent home. It just requires either more money, or more effort to pull together resources, support systems, and to pull loving people and fun into your lives. The basics of good relationships are: love, encouragement, fun, and respect. We want to have homes for our kids, and for ourselves, for our relationships, where these things are present. If these things are not present, or when neglect, abuse(physical, verbal, emotional), negativity, control, are present, it is best to raise yourself and your child alone, in a peaceful, nurturing home. It is good to have a happy mother. It is difficult for a child to be happy, well-adjusted, with an unhappy mother. We see marriages with self-centered, unhealthy, unloving, disrespectful, boring, negative, controlling/demanding men, and unhappy women. It is best to leave these marriages, and to not raise children in these atmospheres.
Finally, as long as a baby bonds with one loving person at birth, she/ he will be fine as far as the bonding stage. The baby must be held, touched, nurtured, get eye contact, hear a loving voice, etc. It is great to have two people to bond with. The more the merrier. We should value loving, sharing, nurturing, fun relationships. But we do not want to live with people, parent with people, who do not lift us up, who do not contribute to peace, love, joy, growth, and health. Two people trying to parent together in the same home need to have a strong love and respect for one another, and want each other to be happy and fulfilled.