The New Parenting Showdown: Single Moms vs. Gay Parents?

My most challenging days as a mother are the few I spend solo-parenting. On those days, I'm in awe of single moms who, day in, day out, do it all -- not because they choose to be super moms, but because they have to be. On the days I try to play super mom, you’ll find me in a little heap on the couch by day’s end, grateful beyond belief that I’ve got parenting backup.

So I was surprised to discover that a recent Pew Research Center study revealed that many Americans have a largely negative view toward single moms. According to the study, when it comes to non-traditional families, Americans divide into three nearly equal groups: Accepters (31 percent), who are open to all family arrangements; Skeptics (37 percent), who embrace some alternative family arrangements, but not others; and Rejecters (32 percent). who think non-traditional family arrangements damage society.

The latter two groups -- representing more than two-thirds of Americans -- all but unanimously point to single-mom families as bad for society. (You can find out whether you’re an accepter, rejecter, or skeptic at the Pew Social Trends site.)

Two-parent gay families, on the other hand, are supported by about 50 percent of Americans. That's certainly encouraging, but how about a little more regard for single moms, too? Maybe Hollywood can resolve this: TV’s Modern Family and the silver screen’s The Kids Are All Right are given some credit for the increasing acceptance toward gay and lesbian families. (Conversely, shows like Parenthood and Weeds don't always portray single moms as having their act together.) Sounds like it’s time for a hip, humorous single-mom show to help us warm to the wonders of moms who do it all, all on their own.

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