Numbers of single dads growing

Single fathers are on the rise. The 2000 Census found that there were 2.2. million motherless households. That's about 3.1 million children who live with just their father, three times the 1980 number. That's approximately 1 home in 45.

A survey by the University of Chicago found that more than a fifth of children in surveyed households lived in single-parent homes - a fourfold increase since the first survey in 1972.

Thomas Coleman, executive director of the American Association for Single People, attributed the rise in single fathers to a variety of reasons, including more judges awarding custody to fathers in divorce cases and more women preferring jobs over family life.

The numbers of dads raising kids by themselves tears down a conception that single fathers abandon their children, or don't take care of them as well as single mothers, says Vine Regan of Grand Rapids, Mich., who is raising five children on his own.

The percentage increase in single-father households outpaced other living arrangements. Two-parent households increased by 6 percent and single-mother homes were up by 25 percent.

(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Monitor

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