The preponderance of single mothers is being cited as the reason for young criminals taking to the streets to make life miserable for the people who are trying to earn a living. It would seem that the days when fathers were the head of households are long past.
Last week, a foundation trotted out some young girls who all claimed that they had hit rock bottom in their lives. One of them spoke of being supported by a stepfather.
There are many such cases largely because increasingly, men are shirking their responsibilities for a variety of reasons. Indeed, some men are not at home because they are seeking their fortunes far away. Some are simply not fathers because some women in love, opted to bear their children.
In most cases, the men simply accept their lot and move on, offering to provide some financial support to keep the child alive. In depressed communities, these men would claim that the woman was less than faithful to them, sparking doubts about the paternity of the child.
However, if one were to look at situations going back a few decades, one would find that men were actually playing footloose, a decision initiated by the fact that they themselves had no role model. They are the products of single parent homes or of a broken home.
For the most part, they are prone to the wiles of older people on the streets. A few of these older people would attempt to impart advice that could help the young man. However, more often than not, the advice would come from people who have already crossed the line of decency and right from wrong.
Yet, it is not only the men, who are sometimes at fault; women sometimes cause broken homes. I happened to be watching television one night. The topic was about cheating. It turned out that nearly seventy percent of married women cheated on their husbands. The reasons varied from boredom to neglect.
The percentage of men who cheated was higher. One analyst said that the men were reacting to a basic instinct of chase or pursue, capture, conquer then flee. In the animal world, the situation is only so brutal when hunger is at stake. The psychiatrist would be tempted to conclude that sex creates a hunger, hence the animalistic response by men.
Nurturing dims such basic instincts, so there is marriage that leads to monogamy. This is the condition though, that demands so much of people.
This column is not about to be a guide for marriage counselling. It was prompted by a friend who is now hurting because his marriage is on the rocks through no fault of his. Indeed, he is not in a unique situation.
He lives in Guyana and his wife lives overseas. There is a saying that long distance relations do not last. People living apart do have physical needs although many of them actually control themselves. But in this case, the partner did not seek a companion in the country where she lived. It was a case of coming back home and starting the relationship.
Needless to say, the other man is something of a shark. He has been blamed for injecting himself in many marriages. How the cuckold husbands have not taken him to book is a surprise.
In this case, the woman must have had a roving eye. It must have been pretty easy because the husband works late. But there is the saying that whatever is done in the dark often comes to light. Needless to say, some neighbour noticed the infidelity and reported to the husband. He in turn was among the doubting Thomases, so he asked the wife. She denied anything untoward, but the reports kept coming.
Before long the husband had a confrontation with his wife and, with incontrovertible proof, he silenced her. The truth hurt and as much as he wanted to believe her, he had to confront the reality. He has filed for divorce but the story does not end there. He wants to beat the other man and he believes that he can. He is a black belt karateka; the man is a weightlifter.
In this case, there are no children from the union, but under such conditions, there is a broken home. Young men from such conditions tend to go astray. They resent their mother for breaking up the home and for driving their father away.
In recent times, women have been killed. Sometimes the husband also takes his life. This is not something that should happen. Many intelligent men would simply walk away, safe in the knowledge that he will live to begin a new relationship.
There was the man who lived in Kingston, Georgetown. He was always traveling and his wife capitalized on these opportunities. One day the husband announced that he was leaving for the airport and his wife could not wait to invite her paramour. But the husband did not travel. He returned and found his wife in a compromising position.
The story takes a humorous turn. The man enters the home and advises the other man to get dressed and leave. I could imagine the other man’s pumping heart, especially when he saw the gun. He leaves as quietly as a mouse.
The wife begins to get dressed, but the husband advises her that she would only leave with what she bought with her money. There wasn’t much. Beg as she might, she had to face the world as she did on the day she was born—naked.
Kind neighbours, the same people who informed the husband of the situation in his absence, loaned or gave her something to cover her nakedness.
When people talk about broken homes, simply ask them, if they are contributors. Blame them for contributing to the criminal situation.
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