A relationship and parenting expert, Andrew Eweka, on Thursday in Lagos said that a child raised by a single parent might be neglected and become less successful.
Eweka, the Chief Executive Officer, Effective Parenting, a non-governmental organisation, made the observation in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria.
He said that many factors accounted for the neglect.
He said: “Single parents often have to work outside the home.
“This can mean that they will not always be available to monitor or spend time with their children.
“Also, many single parents find it difficult to cater for their children financially.
“This can mean they are more likely to live in poverty.
“Such children are likely not to go to school.
“They are likely to become street kids, who later learn the bad habits.
“They are also likely to be abused.”
According to Eweka, although, some children raised by single parents could succeed in life, it is better for a child to be raised by the two parents.
He said that a child raised by two parents would be more balanced socially, financially, emotionally and mentally.
He said: “If two parents raise a child, such a child will have the privilege of learning different values and aspects of life from both parents.
“A child needs the two personalities to raise him or her to become balanced.
“Otherwise, chances are that he may grow to be one-sided on issues about life.”
Eweka noted that single parenthood was still not accepted in Africa, particularly, Nigeria, compared to other parts of the world.
He said that single parenthood could result from death of a partner or marriage dissolution, but noted that some people chose to become single parents.
He said: “Some people become single because they want to be independent and do not want a partner who will tell them what to do.
“Some, probably, are not getting younger and have not been able to get a suitor.
“Therefore, they decide to have a child.”
A 45-year-old single parent, Ave Ekpoawan, told NAN that single parenthood was challenging.
Ekpoawan said that she scarcely had time for her daughter.
She said: “I am a trader and have to work hard to make sure I feed and clothe her.
“With the nation’s economy of today, it becomes very difficult without support from family members and even the government.
“In developed countries, single parents and their children are catered for by the government and that makes it easier.
“My relationship with my daughter’s father did not go well.
“Getting into another relationship has been a challenge.
“That is why I am single.”
Another single parent, Daniella Mbagwu, said that she had support from her family members, but still encountered some challenges.
Mbagwu, a 38-year-old banker, said: “I have a son who he is doing well with my parents, but I do not spend time with him.
“That is a challenge.
“I was married, but got divorced because we were not compatible.
“My son has to be in my care because he is still very young.
“I know how important it is to spend time with children so that they can be responsible in life and I am working on that.”