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Don't rush to call dads 'deadbeat'

Published:Wednesday | May 9, 2012 | 12:00 AM


This is a response to Glenn Tucker's commentary titled 'Hunt down those deadbeat dads' published on Tuesday, May 8, 2012.

There are continuous cries from the public for fathers to play a role. This plea is understandable because there truly are men out there who do not play a role in their child's life - whether financially, socially, emotionally, or otherwise. It needs to be noted that a child's needs are not solely financial, and so this aspect alone cannot lead children to a life of being a deviant in society.

As a teacher, I see students who excel in academics and display values though they are have-nots (even having no fathers), in contrast to the views expressed by Mr Tucker.

Bitter Mothers

My experience over the years has also given me the understanding that some women make it quite difficult for men to play the role of a father. They are either envious of the life which he has begun to live (sometimes with another woman, well suited or not) or have deep emotional ties to this man who has no such feelings for her.

Yes! I have heard of a woman who says that if the man is not willing to be with her, he should have nothing to do with the child. This then has such effect on a child whose mother tries to take the father for a ride; he is to be bled of his finances to 'mind' her, her other children, her hairstyle, fashionable clothes and sometimes her other man. And, when he goes to court to rectify the situation, his arguments may not be either heard or taken into consideration by the judge.

As the topic is inexhaustible, it is for me now to say it is unfair for me to paint most women in such a light. Hence, I think that before a man is considered a 'deadbeat' dad, each case needs to be examined individually. Is he a 'deadbeat' by cause or by nature?