Does the absence of a father lead to a child more likely to commit a crime?

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Ferrograd
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I'm a leftist, and this position seems to be frowned upon. Whilst the New Right is obsessed with single parents, I would be foolish to deny that it does not impact a child. In many cases, there is none to little impact, but David Lammy agrees with me here that in the case of afro-carribean people; they often a lack a father figure as a role model, and as such seek this role model elsewhere. As said, I'm a socialist, so this position is rare in my side of the spectrum, but i think it is quite clear that a father or other figure who can provide sfuficient discipline (so maybe a particuarly assertive mother?) is needed to maintain social order.
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Lord Vitiate
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Of course the absence of a father impacts a child - it would be definitely be ignorant to deny this. However, I do not, and I will never will, believe that this makes it more likely for a child to commit an offence. I think the key things that make a child more likely to commit offence is how the parent(s) has(ve) raised the child. If a child sees their parent doing an unlawful act - it is only logical through the process of socialisation that, that child views that as the correct behaviour and follows suit. Despite this, let us not forget that your background does not reflect the likelihood of a child's chances of being an offender. It can happen to anyone - regardless of background. It all depends on how a child has developed both at home with their parent(s) or at school with their friends as it is all too easy to mix with the wrong crowd.
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Sammylou40
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The absence of either parent has a detrimental effect of a child.
Children thrive on the support and love from as wide a family group as possible.
That doesn’t mean that a child with one parent is doomed to failure. It comes down to the parenting skills of the lone parent
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londonmyst
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No.
I believe that its all about the example of reasonable parenting, an affectionate home environment, teaching a strong work ethic and sense of personal responsibility.
Not growing up with two biological parents or talking to "dad" several times a day.

I know many law abiding people whose fathers died before they were born, didn't have a step-father and grew up without access to a close male role model. Also people who were born as a result of rape and raised by low income young single mothers.
They are all kind, very successful and have never been arrested.
Because their mothers did an amazing job parenting under very tough circumstances, with little money and almost zero physical or emotional support.

I've also known habitually vicious people with massive egos and long criminal records who were raised in very affluent, comfortable environment by a married pair of highly educated parents.
All that their parents, an expensive private school education and frequent visits to the family lawyers seem to have taught them is that no laws or rules apply whenever it is inconvenient to them.
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aioheuiawe
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I absolutely refute this.
My mother is a single mother, I've never come close to, and I never have, committed a crime. I do not believe that it's the lack of a father that perpetuates crime due to lacking role models - I don't need any role model if I'm perfectly honest. What does perpetuate crime is living in certain areas, or going to schools, with a heavy criminal influence. If your parent is very busy working long hours to provide, or you have siblings, you're more likely to slip through the net. This is not due to the lack of a male role model but due to the lack of family resources.

Perhaps children turn to crime to provide for their family, as despite their parent working they simply cannot support. There are all kinds of reason, and to say that children require a male role model is completely false - in my opinion. What would they do differently to a female role model? Teach me how to be male, well surprisingly enough I've managed that just fine on my own.

Historically, these children that slip through the net have been caught by schools, social service ran institutions, youth clubs, etc. But these have been axed in recent years. OP, that's why the left branch of politics do not agree, because they blame the lack of services. Also, they claim (which I totally agree with) that these parents wouldn't have to work so long in a fair system, so they could provide for their kids adequately, and they would not have to turn to crime - and could stop them from doing so.
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Leviathan1611
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yes. and if not, it sure did affect the child negatively.
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Ferrograd
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(Original post by aioheuiawe)
I absolutely refute this.
My mother is a single mother, I've never come close to, and I never have, committed a crime. I do not believe that it's the lack of a father that perpetuates crime due to lacking role models - I don't need any role model if I'm perfectly honest. What does perpetuate crime is living in certain areas, or going to schools, with a heavy criminal influence. If your parent is very busy working long hours to provide, or you have siblings, you're more likely to slip through the net. This is not due to the lack of a male role model but due to the lack of family resources.

Perhaps children turn to crime to provide for their family, as despite their parent working they simply cannot support. There are all kinds of reason, and to say that children require a male role model is completely false - in my opinion. What would they do differently to a female role model? Teach me how to be male, well surprisingly enough I've managed that just fine on my own.

Historically, these children that slip through the net have been caught by schools, social service ran institutions, youth clubs, etc. But these have been axed in recent years. OP, that's why the left branch of politics do not agree, because they blame the lack of services. Also, they claim (which I totally agree with) that these parents wouldn't have to work so long in a fair system, so they could provide for their kids adequately, and they would not have to turn to crime - and could stop them from doing so.
I agree with that BUT boys still need a male role model in their lives. If they don't get this through the family, they may get it through older kids at school or in gangs etc. I don't refute the fact that you've never come close to or have committed a crime. Firstly, are you male or female. Obviously this is only really relevant if you are male.

Secondly, whilst this can obviously apply to all ethnic groups, as David Lammy points out this is a major issue with the afro carribean community. Now given I have white privillege, it is not my responsibility to tell what other groups should be doing, but there is a trend in that a disproportionately high number of black people, particuarly afro-carribean people, commit crime.

Now, if you're a racist you might just go "its because their black". Well, lets look at their socioeconomic status. 1/3 of afro carribean people live in poverty. Now that's a lot, but 50% of pakistani families live in poverty, yet as a general rule of thumb, people who identify with the Pakistani ethnic group or asian commit less crime. What is the difference? Well - pakistani families are generally large, extended families, very conservative, there will always be a father or mother, it is basically unheard of for these families to exist as a single parent unit.

So my point is is whilst undoubtedly poverty plays a large role, it still doesnt account for the fact that afro carribean people commit more crime than say pakistanis, yet more pakistanis live in poverty than afro carribean people.
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aioheuiawe
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(Original post by Ferrograd)
I agree with that BUT boys still need a male role model in their lives. If they don't get this through the family, they may get it through older kids at school or in gangs etc. I don't refute the fact that you've never come close to or have committed a crime. Firstly, are you male or female. Obviously this is only really relevant if you are male.

Secondly, whilst this can obviously apply to all ethnic groups, as David Lammy points out this is a major issue with the afro carribean community. Now given I have white privillege, it is not my responsibility to tell what other groups should be doing, but there is a trend in that a disproportionately high number of black people, particuarly afro-carribean people, commit crime.

Now, if you're a racist you might just go "its because their black". Well, lets look at their socioeconomic status. 1/3 of afro carribean people live in poverty. Now that's a lot, but 50% of pakistani families live in poverty, yet as a general rule of thumb, people who identify with the Pakistani ethnic group or asian commit less crime. What is the difference? Well - pakistani families are generally large, extended families, very conservative, there will always be a father or mother, it is basically unheard of for these families to exist as a single parent unit.

So my point is is whilst undoubtedly poverty plays a large role, it still doesnt account for the fact that afro carribean people commit more crime than say pakistanis, yet more pakistanis live in poverty than afro carribean people.
Why does one require a male role model? I don't lack anything, and I have had no male role models - family or otherwise. It's not needed, I believe it's a common misconception. Children need rolemodels, not specific gendered role models. And yes, I am male.

I have no idea why afro carribeans have a higher crime rate, despite lower poverty - I'd suggest perhaps it's to do with geography. Perhaps more afro carribeans, despite not being as poor, live in areas that perpetuate crime more (like I suggested in my post), or perhaps they live in more expensive cities, so although they're not as poor, they require more money. Perhaps it's to do with the number of children, so there isn't as much attention given and they slip through the net (also as suggested), which wouldn't even depend on money.
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Waldorf67
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The majority of the psychological literature is now centred around the notion of quality not quantity.

I.e., two parents in unhappy relationships can be far more damaging than a single parent.

There are detriments to single parenthood but that is a result of indirect factors such as financial hardship, less contact with child/ emotional resources etc. When you control for those factors the risks are greatly diminished.

I am a solid believer that a child raised in a happy single parent household will fair far better than a child raises in an unhappy household with both parents.

I also severely disagree with your sweeping statement about Afro-Caribbeans.
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fallen_acorns
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(Original post by Waldorf67)
The majority of the psychological literature is now centred around the notion of quality not quantity.

I.e., two parents in unhappy relationships can be far more damaging than a single parent.

There are detriments to single parenthood but that is a result of indirect factors such as financial hardship, less contact with child/ emotional resources etc. When you control for those factors the risks are greatly diminished.

I am a solid believer that a child raised in a happy single parent household will fair far better than a child raises in an unhappy household with both parents.

I also severely disagree with your sweeping statement about Afro-Caribbeans.
You disagree with the statement that afro-caribbeans often lack father figures? Black children are over 2x more likely to end up without a father than white children. But you can disagree with it if it makes you feel better.

'Unhappy' is also an awful word to use, its incredibly vague and undefined. If your reading the literature, they don't just use the word 'unhappy' to categorize families. Its certainly true that Children are better off with a single parent, than in an abusive household (including psychological abuse inflicted by arguing/using the child as a pawn in disputes etc) - but 'unhappy' also includes a vast amount of families who don't quite have the life they want, but are still working and functioning in a way that's good for the child.

---

Top the OP.

Yes, it does seem like the absense of male figures does lead to an increased chance of problems later in in life. But its also worth noting that the male role model doesn't have to be a dad. Grandparents, uncles, teachers etc. can all fill that role to some degree, depending on how much time. The poster I quoted above is also right that when you account for socio-economic factors, the difference between single parent families does diminish. It still exists, but its much much less impactful, than it is in the population as a whole.

Part of the problem for single parents is taht we live in a society that allows devorce, but is still organised entirely around the idea of the 2-parent family unit. So they, often by not much fault of their own, end up trapped. They are encouraged socially into divorce, because an unhappy marriage is unncapteable in our culture today, but then after the devorce they find out that all of our society isn't organised in a way that facilitates them raising children on their own.

For me, you either need to have a no-fault-divorce culture + Child-raising organised around single parents..
Or you have what we used to have.. divorce is frowned upon/very difficult + Child-raising organised around 2-parent families.
At the moment we have the worst middle point.. no-fault-divorce culture + Child raising organised around 2-parent families. This can't last.. its highly distructive at the moment.
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Napp
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Maybe is the only accurate answer here. There are plenty of fatherless kids who go on to be habitual criminals and there are plenty who grow up fully rounded.
What determines whether a child grows up well is a lot more multifaceted than if daddy dearest was there or not.
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Allie4
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some of the worst criminals out there had both parents in their lives
so that argument is complete bullsh!t

i also see this argument used on pornstars, people claiming that if these girls had their dads in their lives they probably wouldn't have gone down this path. complete bull, many of them had/have their dads in their lives still. when people have no real argument, they just clutch at straws
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limetang
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(Original post by londonmyst)
No.
I believe that its all about the example of reasonable parenting, an affectionate home environment, teaching a strong work ethic and sense of personal responsibility.
Not growing up with two biological parents or talking to "dad" several times a day.

I know many law abiding people whose fathers died before they were born, didn't have a step-father and grew up without access to a close male role model. Also people who were born as a result of rape and raised by low income young single mothers.
They are all kind, very successful and have never been arrested.
Because their mothers did an amazing job parenting under very tough circumstances, with little money and almost zero physical or emotional support.

I've also known habitually vicious people with massive egos and long criminal records who were raised in very affluent, comfortable environment by a married pair of highly educated parents.
All that their parents, an expensive private school education and frequent visits to the family lawyers seem to have taught them is that no laws or rules apply whenever it is inconvenient to them.
Outliers don’t disprove the rule.
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limetang
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(Original post by Allie4)
some of the worst criminals out there had both parents in their lives
so that argument is complete bullsh!t

i also see this argument used on pornstars, people claiming that if these girls had their dads in their lives they probably wouldn't have gone down this path. complete bull, many of them had/have their dads in their lives still. when people have no real argument, they just clutch at straws
A course in statistics might be needed. Outliers don’t disprove the general rule.
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MoonlightRain
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Definitely does. Sometime you think it hasn’t made much difference to your life but subconsciously it has.
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Ragman75
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Its not little being a child of a single parent has a huge effect on your development, humans where made to be raised by a mother and father
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Glaz
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(Original post by Ragman75)
humans where made to be raised by a mother and father
:nah:
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londonmyst
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(Original post by Ragman75)
Its not little being a child of a single parent has a huge effect on your development, humans where made to be raised by a mother and father
Who told you that? :confused:
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Ragman75
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(Original post by Glaz)
:nah:
https://jech.bmj.com/content/69/8/76...14-205058.full
https://www.psychologicalscience.org...l-contact.html
https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/b...rtance-fathers
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Ragman75
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(Original post by londonmyst)
Who told you that? :confused:
the psychological effects of not having a mother or father
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