Over 25 percent of kids in the United States are now growing up in single parent households, mainly headed by women. In case of minorities, especially the African American community in the country, it goes up to over 70 percent of single parent households, again mostly with a woman as the head of the house. This percentage has only increased over the years. It is, therefore, obvious that it is not a myth, not anymore. Why is this a rising trend in the African American community? Why is the traditional family structure undergoing such a drastic change?


Single mother households a majority


Single parent households with women as the head have been relatively common among African Americans. Such family structures have been called Black Matriarchy by many, given the strong influence that these women have on their families. Some of these are unwed mothers, while some are divorced. A small percentage of them are widows who have chosen not to remarry. Although the general stereotype is that if a single mother struggling to keep going, many single parents are successful and financially well placed. They are able to provide their kids with a good education and start them off on the path of success.


It is interesting to note that although most single parent households are managed and headed by women, the father figure is never too far away. Although unmarried, fathers of such kids are mostly around to love, discipline and teach their kids. They visit regularly and fulfill most responsibilities expected of a father. Many of them also contribute financially for the kid’s education and other needs. They are as involved in their kid’s growth and development as any other parent, even if they do not live with the kids.


Why the rising trend of single parent families in the African American community


  • More acceptance of single parents, divorce and unwed mothers has led to an increasing number of single parent households.
  • Lack of adequate maternity and childcare support from the government for married couples discourages young mothers from getting married.
  • Poverty and financial problems pushing families to split, leading to single parent households.


African Americans are known to live as a close-knit community that supports every member of the community in times of need. This ensures that the kids get all the love, care and support they need from the community, even if they live in single parent households.


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