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This has been an ongoing debate and this post shared via Single Black Male written by WisdomIsMisery gives the male point of view on the topic.
Conflicts of Interest: Child Support – The Man’s Point of View via Single Black Male
Last week, Dr. J wrote a post on the New NYC Teen Pregnancy Prevention Ads. At some point during the day, a debate on the role of child support erupted in the comment section. In reading these comments, I realized very quickly that men and women have very different views on the role of child support, the fairness of child support (laws and calculations), and what child support does cover or should cover. Although this was an interesting topic, since I have no firsthand experience with child support, I solicited an open call on Twitter (@WisdomIsMisery) to see if any men or women would be willing to share their experience, views, opinions, and trials and tribulations with child support. Two writers, a man and a woman, volunteered. While I wanted their pieces to be original, I asked them to, at minimum, address four questions:
I love my son.
It is important that this sentiment is clearly stated and understood from the very beginning; if you are a man and do not yet have a son, there are no words that can accurately describe the feeling in its entirety. It’s like looking into a funhouse mirror that allows me to see into my own past, when I was innocent and untainted by the many hard lessons life has taught me thus far.
My son’s mother (I refuse to use the term “baby mama”) and I are not together; the story of why is long and sordid enough for a column all its own, so I’ll spare you the details. Suffice it to say that no relationship manifested, but she decided to have our child, whom we both love unconditionally. It was made clear from the “I’m pregnant and I’m keeping it” conversation that we would not be together, but I would be active in my child’s life and I wanted 50/50 custody. I attended doctor’s appointments, was there when her water broke, drove her to the hospital and, due to a cesarean, was the first parent to hold my child. From there, things have gone spectacularly awry.
This leads me to the actual subject of this “opinion”: child support. As a progressive thinking male, I have a love/hate relationship with the institution. While I do immensely support the notion that it is the responsibility of a man to take care of any and all children he sires, there are far too many issues with existing child support law for me to be, well, supportive of it. The current laws do not account for many factors that can result in what any man would call at best a terrible inconvenience, and at worst, an absolute horror story.
Most people know of at least one situation amongst their friends or family in which a man is paying child support. Sometimes the system gets it right; the amount is fair and the child benefits properly from both the financial support and the regular presence of a man doing his best to take responsibility for bringing up his child. These clear-cut instances are not the stuff of which a man’s nightmares are made of when he’s deciding whether or not he “likes it raw” with a partner.
It’s the seedy underbelly, the worst case scenarios, the spirit-crushing vindictive nature of some women, combined with the random incompetence of the legal system that makes a brother wake up in a cold sweat with the voice of some ratchet echoing in his ears, endlessly dragging out his name like…
“That ain’t even my NAME…”
Sourced: Single Black Male
Photo Credit: Single Black Male