I was lying down with my mom in the middle of one of our late night chat fests when she made a comment that stuck out to me. When I was a baby, she said all of the women that she was surrounded by—with the exception of maybe two—had children and husbands to go along with them. Unlike this generation, mom dukes continued, where young girls are just popping out babies left and right with no ring or stability. And boy, she ain’t never lied.
Every time I turn around, somebody I know is pregnant. Old friends from school post pictures on Facebook holding their protruding bellies or I hear through the grapevine that so-and-so and her new boyfriend are about to drop a bundle of joy in a couple of months. I can’t even step foot outside my door without seeing a young girl pushing a stroller or yanking a baby’s hand down the street. It seems like there are more children being had than weddings being planned and it makes me wonder if marriage is at all important in today’s society anymore.
Have we lost that sense of tradition? Does having kids minus the rings, white gowns and horse and carriage signify a degenerate, moral-less society? Or is the fact that so many women are giving birth out of wedlock really not that big of a deal (I mean divorce rates are sky high, so marriage really doesn’t guarantee anything, right?). For you good ol’ Bible-abiding Christians, there’s probably no question about what’s right and what’s wrong. But I believe that marriage before babies is more of a traditional thing than something we’re obligated to do, nor should we expect everybody to put a ring on it just because they have a bun in the oven (nor should we look at them crazy if they don’t care to get married to one another after the fact). Sure, it’s nice to walk down the aisle and have the whole shabang before you have children, but if you’re in a committed relationship, financially secure and emotionally ready to take that step, then hey, why not?
Now, for the young girls out there whose noses are wide open, chasing after irresponsible, immature little boys, that’s a different story. If you don’t have the funds or the mentality and are still living at your mother’s house and know you’re going to more dependent on the resources and help of family and friends, simply put, you’re just not ready. So bringing a child into the world is probably not the best idea.
I can’t count how many females I know who’ve given birth to kids with no ring and didn’t have anything to offer but an unhealthy environment for their children to grow. My own grandmother was a teen mom. She always stresses to me the importance of waiting until you find the right type of man and circumstances to have a child so that you don’t have to struggle to provide for your family. And I couldn’t agree more. But there are also married women out there who battle with stability and find themselves raising children on their own or in unhealthy, unhappy environments, even though they have husbands. So when it all boils down to it, it’s really not about being married or single, but creating a safe, secure, loving environment for your seed before you decide to bring them into this world. Real rap.