Can A Man Be Forced Into Fatherhood?

69 Comments
June 17, 2013 ‐ By Charing Ball
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Happy Post Father’s Day to all the dudes out there who are actively involved in the lives of young people – whether they are biological fathers or not – because apparently, being a stand-up dude is purely optional.

At least that is the message I got from this New York Times editorial in which writer Laurie Shrage, who is also a professor of gender studies, argues that just because a man “accidentally” gets a woman pregnant, shouldn’t mean that he should be forced to bear the legal responsibilities of the child. As Shrage, explains it, this phenomenon is called forced fatherhood, as she labels it, and it is akin to punishing men for sexual promiscuity. According to her, there needs to be a more expansive definition of fatherhood, particularly in the court systems, to better accommodate men who are not the biological father of a child but still decide to raise them, as well to include men whose only connection to a child is being a sp*rm donor. From Shrage’s editorial:

Court-ordered child support does make sense, say, in the case of a divorce, when a man who is already raising a child separates from the child’s mother, and when the child’s mother retains custody of the child. In such cases, expectations of continued financial support recognize and stabilize a parent’s continued caregiving role in a child’s life.  However, just as court-ordered child support does not make sense when a woman goes to a sp*rm bank and obtains sp*rm from a donor who has not agreed to father the resulting child, it does not make sense when a woman is impregnated (accidentally or possibly by her choice) from sex with a partner who has not agreed to father a child with her. In consenting to sex, neither a man nor a woman gives consent to become a parent, just as in consenting to any activity, one does not consent to yield to all the accidental outcomes that might flow from that activity. ”

To Shrage’s larger point, the child support system needs to be overhauled as well. There are few folks, who I would think would argue that the system in its current state is of benefit to mother, father, or child involved. And with anywhere between 14 to 24 of fathers in the system below the poverty line, slapping an order of support, which he is unlikely to be able to pay, does not seem beneficial. I also agree with her point about a new expansive definition to include the men, who have voluntarily stepped up and taken on the role as father in a child’s life. However, as bad as this current system is, having a system where a man can pick and choose which of his off-spring he deems worthy of his last name doesn’t seem very progressive – in fact, it sounds very regressive to the times of old when men did that very same thing and were well within their legal right to do so.

Likewise, I personally find it hard to imagine there being an epidemic of men being forced into parenthood against their objection. Even providing anecdotal stories about women hijacking sp*rm from a condom some poor schmuck left behind likely pales in comparison to the stories of men, who were willing participants in sexual intercourse, which ultimately led to conception. And to be clear, short of stealing a man’s sp*rm, the claim of forced fatherhood is really a dubious, and slightly offensive one, particularly to people who have had forced sexual relationships put upon them.

Sure, we can argue that men have little say-so in determining the progression of an unplanned pregnancy, however, that is because the job of impregnating and giving actual birth is not equal. And I think that this is a point that needs to further be emphasized as folks of all genders do take pregnancy for granted. This is in part due to modern technology, which has greatly decreased most of the risk that used to be associated with pregnancy and labor. However, folks should understand that pregnancy is still a pretty dangerous job and women really do put their lives on the line in order to birth the next generation of human beings. Despite the fact that the number of maternal deaths worldwide dropped from more than 543,000 to 287,000, some 800 women still die daily from even the most preventable complications due to pregnancy and labor.

Put aside the mostly non-life threatening side effects of pregnancy including nausea and vomiting, constipation, heartburn, swelling and bloating, hemorrhoids, hair loss, and a whole host of other unpleasant ailments, and let’s talk about the more serious complications: high blood pressure and hypertension; gestational diabetes; eclampsia; blood clots; broken bones; infection; hemorrhaging, and even death. Not to mention the complications, which can come from having to have a non-v*ginal birth (c-section) and all the after-birth side effects like postpartum depression.

Since men are physically incapable of bearing these life-altering and threatening burdens of pregnancy, it doesn’t make sense – legal or otherwise – that they should have a say in a decision, which has a profound affect on one’s body. And if any man has a problem with that, tell him to take it up with Mother Nature.

Although the final decision about the progression of a pregnancy and labor belongs to the woman, men are not totally without choice to prevent unplanned fatherhood. I think what is most interesting about these decisions, which come up around the idea of men being allowed to legally terminate parental rights, is that we tend to skip over the same same sort of personal responsibility ethos, which has been shoved down the throats of women. Sort of how there is a movement now to teach men not to rape, as opposed to just telling women how to prevent rape, we need to start drilling in the minds of men the importance of taking their reproductive choices seriously. And if they don’t, there will be serious and life-altering consequences, including being stuck legally and financially to a child you might not be ready for.

We should reinforce to men that once they let that seed separate from their body, and into another’s body, you basically give consent to use said seed for whatever purpose one see’s fit, including biological. We should tell guys that not only is abstinence an acceptable and reasonable option, but just in case they can’t wait, at least try to be more selective in their sexual relationships. Likewise, if they can’t count on the success rate of condoms, perhaps they should explore other birth control options, including a vasectomy, which again, thanks to modern technology, is now reversible. Some guys I know don’t even like to think about that option because it is “too invasive.” Go figure.

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  • lifes a bitch

    gay. like everything else. a guy doesn’t make the decision not to take birth control, resulting in a child. i never wanted a child, and when i thought it could happen, we talked and she agreed to be on birth control. but of course can’t rely on or believe women. so.. now unlike most at least i pay child support but feel like our daughter is used. i don’t have a choice now whether to be a dad or not, just something i never wanted to worry about. she wanted the child, she broke a oral contract leading to, and continues to use the system anyway she can, and degrade and add drama too my life. i wouldn’t have to ever speak or see the ex again if wasn’t for our daughter. and if i don’t step up into this forced position im the bad guy. so now its convienent for her she wants me to be in my daughters life. life’s great! thanks bitches

  • Haa Haa

    I never wanted children. I let my boyfriend know this from the start. I took the pill and he wore condoms. People need to be real with each other. Know who you are laying up with; just because someone is attractive does not mean you have to sleep with them. Use contraception all of the time. It is not 100%, but it works. Taking precautions to not become a
    parent is better than playing roulette with your body and your life. If you don’t know she is on birth control, keep it wrapped up. Keep more than 1 type of contraception on hand at all times. You know what feels better than unprotected s-x: not having to get up to change a diaper at 3 in the morning. Accidental pregnancies happen, but most can be prevented.

  • IJS

    Dumbest thing I’ve ever heard! And I’m dumbfounded that it’s coming from a woman. There’s this crazy concept sweeping the world, Laurie Shrage – it’s called every action has consequences. Unless the man in question is raped (and even then it’s a slippery slope), he is consenting to/accepting responsibility for “all the accidental outcomes”. Men are adults and have the option to abstain or use protection. Please stop trying to encourage a culture of apathy and accountability dodgers.

  • NJWedPlanner

    I’d rather have a man who WANTS to be apart of my kids life. Whether it’s by accident or planned, if he doesn’t want to play an active role in their life, I won’t force him. That is just setting my kids up for years of disappointment and hurt. I’d rather have no court-ordered child support or visitation and he stay completely out of their lives. So, I don’t think a man should be forced to take care of their child, if they didn’t “ask” to be a father. I think that is in the best interest of the child. They don’t need a jerk in their lives. And yall men need to be careful of who yall stickin’ and movin’ with.

    • hollyw

      Forced child support doesn’t force the man into the child’s life; it simply provides the child w/ the support they are deserved, not what the mother feels she deserves or needs. The child deserves this support. If the mother doesn’t need it, then put it in a college fund or trust for 18yrs!

      • drewbles

        That isn’t how it works and you know it. Often enough the mother will take said funds and spend the bare minimum on her kids, and spend the rest on herself.

  • GirlSixx

    Can a man be forced into fatherhood, YES — Do I think it’s right.. NOPE!!!
    I understand that noone can tell a women when and where to have a child if she was to become pregnant but I truly feel that the man who impregnated her should have some say so in the matter of whether or not he’s ready for a child and if she should go through with the pregnancy, because afterall by forcing a man into somethng he’s not ready for is only going to cause misery later; moreso for that unwanted child — which is why we have alot of unwed single mothers running around here, often times if you take your time to get to know a man before jumping into the sack or better yet talking about the “WHAT-IFS” like what if you were to become pregnant; it could better help you make a more informed decision in regards to whether or not you two should still sleep together. Of course whenever you have sex with someone you are taking a chance (condom breakage, etc.) but by having these types of discussions can help alleviate some of the anxiety that may come with it — if you two discussed this upfront.
    Men will tell you everything you need to know about themselves if you just listen and pay attention. If he says he’s not ready for kids… then you know WRAP IT UP AT ALL TIMES.. now you have some who will say “I ain’t saying no to kids but not saying a definite yes- If it happens, it happens” this is still tricky though depending on his mindset, not 100% guarantee he will want to build a life with you, but he may be around for his kid, and co-parent. Also very important to know what type of man you are laying down with.
    Bottom line is communication is key.

    • Gimmeabreak78

      Sorry, buddy. It’s no one else’s responsibility to make sure you don’t become a parent before you are ready. Pregnancy is one of the possible consequences of sex much like a collision is a possible consequence of driving on the road. In both cases, people can do things to greatly mitigate their risk, but if a negative outcome happens with or without risk mitigation, you are still responsible for the outcome.

      • hollyw

        My sentiments, exactly. Folks (mostly men) view today’s laws as hostile towards them w/o failing to realize they are in support of the child that exists only b/c of BOTH party’s irresponsibility, and b/c historically, women (and indirectly, child) were left fully to blame and left w/ full responsibility to take care of an out-of-wedlock child. Cry me a river.

      • saint2e

        I’m confused.

        Are you arguing that men should accept the responsibility of the outcome of sex and support a child that is conceived by accident?

        Or are you arguing that women should accept the responsibility of the outcome of sex and not get an abortion when conceived by accident?

        Or both, if you want to be consistent with your logic?

        • Gatlis

          Often times the pro-choicers against male reproductive rights will resort to pro-life arguments to justify their stance.

        • Gimmeabreak78

          I’m saying that there are x number of ways a woman who wants to avoid parenthood before she is ready can legally do so and there are y number of ways a man who wants to avoid parenthood before he is ready can legally do so. Both men and women know what their options are. Neither gender should leave it up to the other to determine their status as a parent. What is inconsistent about that?

          • saint2e

            No, what you’re saying is “y = don’t have sex in the first place”, an argument made popular by pro-lifers against anti-abortion.

            Why can’t y equal “Man respects woman’s right to either bear the child or abort it (which is a PRIVILEGE she is given), but is able to abscond from fatherly responsibilities if the woman decides to bear the child”?

            • Gimmeabreak78

              No, that’s not what I am saying at all. You have completely mischaracterized what I have said to further your own agenda. Again, women have X number of ways to legally avoid parenthood. Men have y number of ways. When either side has chosen not to use any or all of their legal options for avoiding parenthood, then they can’t blame the other side for becoming a parent before they are ready. Again, my argument has been consistent.

              • saint2e

                So what are the ways that men can legally avoid parenthood?

                1) Don’t have sex.

                What else?

                • Gimmeabreak78

                  Here are a list of the unilateral ways (though not an exhaustive list) that men can avoid parenthood.

                  1. Don’t have sex.
                  2. Have a vasectomy.
                  3. Wear a condom.
                  4. Use spermicide.

                  Option 1 has 100% efficacy. Option 2 has 99.8% efficacy. Option 3 has 85% efficacy. Option 4 has 75% efficacy. Combining two or more of options 2-4 increases overall efficacy.

                  • saint2e

                    So for females the equivalent list is:

                    1. Don’t have sex.
                    2. Have a Tubal ligation.
                    3. Get partner to wear a condom.
                    4. Use birth control.

                    So really, there’s no foolproof way (outside of not having sex, which is probably a good idea in today’s society), and so both sexes should accept the responsibilities of their actions and accept their parenthood upon pregnancy.

                    • Gimmeabreak78

                      I would make some slight corrections to your list. I am a big believer in not leaving their status as a parent up to someone else. So yes, women can

                      1) Avoid sex.
                      2) Have a hysterectomy or tubal ligation
                      3) Use hormonal contraceptives.
                      4) Have an abortion.

                      These are all legal options for women to avoid parenthood. Women just have the additional right of terminating an unwanted pregnancy because the pregnancy is occurring in their own bodies. Whether or not one finds abortion objectionable is another matter altogether.

                      All are legal options for avoiding parenthood.

  • Ok

    For anyone who believes in true equality and choice, the situation described makes logical sense. If a woman can choose at any time during the pregnancy whether or not she wants to be a mother, then a man should be able to choose at any time during the pregnancy whether or not he wants to be a father.

    I understand that those who don’t truly believe in choice or equality will have a problem with this.

    • Pivyque

      I 100% agree with you.

    • Gimmeabreak78

      First of all, a woman cannot chose at any time during a pregnancy if she wants to be mother. After the second trimester in all 50 states, she has to carry the pregnancy to term, unless she is willing to subject herself to a back alley abortion, so your premise is wrong from the jump. Secondly, a man has just as much contraceptive capability as a woman. Just like a woman can have a hysterectomy or take the pill to sterilize herself, a man can have a vasectomy to do the same thing. A vasectomy is reversible, less than the cost of a flat screen tv, covered by insurance and much cheaper than dodging child support responsibilities. Please stop acting like men are being victimized in some way because they voluntarily deposited their reproductive materials in the womb of a woman they want nothing to do with.

      • Ok

        You are incorrect. According to the Guttmacher Institute, only 26 states prohibit third trimester abortions.

        Regardless, women can choose to be a parent before or after conception. Men can choose to be a parent only before conception. That means that men and women are treated differently under the law. That was my only point. As long as men and women are treated differently under the law, there can never be true equality.

        I am not acting like anyone is a victim, just stating some obvious facts that seem to bother some people.

        • Gimmeabreak78

          I am not alleging that third trimester abortion is illegal in all 50 states. I am simply saying that while it is not expressly illegal, in all 50 states, the overwhelming majority of doctors will not perform them for ethical and legal reasons. It is far more dangerous for the mother to have a third trimester abortion done, therefore, it is much riskier for the doctor to perform the procedure. The doctor doesn’t want to be accused of malpractice, so most doctors just won’t do it (unless you got to Philadelphia to see that madman that was in the news recently).

    • hollyw

      I am probably the most pro-choice and women’s rights advocate as one can get (slight exaggeration), and I have a slight problem with your position. Feminism is not to be confused with idealism or a Utopian society. In a Utopia, babies would be completely removed from the woman’s body and equally nourished, raised, and provided for by both sexes…

      That is not happening in this millennium. Even the strongest feminist realizes the unique position women have in creating life in her. As do the 50 states. Which still dictate a woman’s right to terminate pregnancies at any stage…so it is not as you said, “at any time”, one. Two, it’s completely unrealistic to compare 9mos of pregnancy, where you say women can choose motherhood, to the 18+yrs men could choose fatherhood…see the difference? Technically, either or both parents could decide, post-baby, to throw the kid in the foster system whenever they tire of the parenting lifestyle, but where does that leave [Black] society..? I implore you to edit your theory.

      • Ok

        I very much understand that men and women are different and are treated differently under the law.

        There was nothing unrealistic about my statement. Restated simply, if a woman gets pregnant, she can choose whether or not to be a mother. The man has no such choice to be a father at that point. The woman has full autonomy to make a unilateral decision that can affect the man for the rest of his life. The man cannot make the same decision, unilateral or otherwise.

        I am merely stating facts regarding the realities of the current laws and how inequality is codified in the law. I’m really not sure what “theory” you think I stated or why it should be edited.

        • hollyw

          You simply restated what you said at first, which I argued was not in fact reality, but a skewed perception in order to make your point. Everyone gets that men and women are different, biologically and legally. However, you only seem to want to highlight the fact that women can choose to carry a baby full-term w/o a man’s consent, w/o recognizing that women, too, are in fact placed in similar (if not more dire consequential) situations, though not normally at the same exact space in time.

          One, if a man refuses to financially provide (*note, not the same as forced ‘fatherhood’), the usual extent the law goes to is to garnish his wages. Mind you, this is only if he doesn’t completely give up his parental rights and only after the mother files for child support. Otherwise, he’s left alone. Before the baby is born, though the father has no legal right to choice, if the mother decides to “disown her offspring” in utero past 3mos w/o risk of death (or for your idealized sense of ‘equality’, let’s say both decide), only she goes to prison…for MURDER.

          Two, after the baby is born, both parents are held to the same standards and BOTH are forced into parenthood unless they relinquish their full parental rights.

          So, rather than saying that women have more power over having a baby than men, the much closer reality is that the GOVERNMENT (to be noted, significantly made more up of men than women) has exacted more power over men and women’s destinies than either one, both through custody/child support (i.e. parental) rights AS WELL AS reproductive rights.

          • Ok

            You state that I am wrong which means that you must disagree with my very simple premise.

            But you state:

            “Before the baby is born, though the father has no legal right to choice”

            Exactly my point! The woman DOES have this legal right to choice. That’s the ONLY point I’m trying to make, that men and women do not have equal rights and this inequality is intentionally codified in the laws of the land.

            • hollyw

              LOL SMH! No, I got that that was your only point, my point was that in the process, you actually stated that, in comparison, women could choose at any time in their pregnancy, which was a falsehood in order to exaggerate the woman’s rights to downplay men’s. I disagreed w/you b/c you attempted to “simplify” reality to the point of it being skewed to the point of being wrong, which made it invalid, and you wrong. You’d rather highlight men’s lack of rights over women’s reproduction rather than seeing the larger picture, which is women’s own lack of rights over their own BODIES! Also, in this regard, further refuse to acknowledge that for the last 6 of those 9mos, NEITHER men nor women have a say over the creation of this baby and are BOTH forced into it. Get it?!?!?

              • Ok

                Regardless of your plethora of concocted scenarios, men and women do not have equal rights. Fact.

                If you google late-term abortions you will find clinics that will perform 3rd trimester abortions. Fact.

                But by all means, keep having fun inferring all kinds of opinions that I neither state nor hold.

                • hollyw

                  “Men and women do not have equal rights”. This is the most ironic statement of the century.

                  I do believe I quoted you more than once sir/ma’am. Also, do you live in the U.S..? If you know Roe vs. Wade, I don’t see how you would’ve even mentioned late-term abortions to further your point…

                  p.s. I did google “third trimester abortion”. Only one clinic showed up.

                  • Gimmeabreak78

                    At this point, ignoring OK is probably the best strategy. He/she is talking as if late-term abortions are done by the boatload, when in fact, well over 90% of all abortions performed in the country are done within the 1st trimester. Less than 1% of all abortions are performed in the third trimester, and nearly all of these are done because continuing the pregnancy would kill the mother.

                    • hollyw

                      LOL I try but it’s so hard when ignorance abounds, esp. in this decade…

              • Ok

                Regardless of your plethora of concocted scenarios, men and women do not have equal rights. Fact.

                If you google late-term abortions you will find clinics that will perform 3rd trimester abortions. Fact.

                But by all means, keep having fun inferring all kinds of opinions that I neither state nor hold.

  • vladimir76

    Yes. A man can be forced to fatherhood. Women can name any guy to be father of their kids without having to prove that the guy actually is the biological father.
    The accused guy then has 6 months to challenge the paternity. After six months he is the father by definition and has to pay child support even if the DNA test proves him not to be the father. And there is nothing the guy can do to stop garnishing his paychecks.

    The one and only legal fraud in the USA is comited by women. It’s called te paternity fraud. No woman gets punished for this and quite opposite, gets rewarded by ongoing payments from an innocent guy whom she defrauded.

    • charingb

      “And there is nothing the guy can do to stop garnishing his paychecks.”
      How about taking that DNA test during that 6 month grace period?

      • vladimir76

        The problem is that

        1. He may not even know that be has been caused of fatherhood. According to the law women don’t have to prove that he has been served papers. Paternity accusation is the only thing where you don’t have to prove that the guy got the papers. Everything else, divorce or any lawsuit you have to prove that th defendant was served but paternity. All women need to do is to send the papers to the guys last known address which could be her own address if they lived together or where he lived in the past. And since he never gets the papers, one day after six months he finds that his wages are garnished.

        2. Most kids look the same at the time of their birth. Most guys are not suspicious of not being father much later when it’s already too late to challenge the paternity.
        Can you imagine the scenes in the hospitals the women would do if he would want to have DNA done on spot when the baby was born?

        • charingb

          2. Six months is enough time to determine if a kid shares your features

          but to point number:

          1. Does that situation happen, sure. However the mass majority of guys before child support court are not there because of the situation you noted. For every anecdotal story about some dude being false accused I can (and I’m sure that the other ladies here) provide some equally horrid stories about the lengths men go through to avoid child support (For instance, I have a friend, whose ex-husband shows up to court every single time with a bogus identification, saying that he is someone else. And because his fake name is not on the birth certificate – he walks out of there every, single time. True story. She was told she would basically have to do her own leg work). I agree with your larger point about he ineffectiveness of the court system though.

          • vladimir76

            Com on, most guys even don’t think within the first six months of not being the father. Also the DNA test is not a one day deal. It takes weeks and then filing in the court waiting for the date of court so this takes quite a bit of time and you need to start really early to get this Done on time.

            And if the guy is not in the courtroom no judgement should be past. If he doesn’t want to show up use police to drag him in. But before both of them are in the court and DNA evidence is present, no judgement should take place.

            Also to make it fair, the guy should have right to get out of paying at any time he finds out that he was defrauded and ask for every penny back.

        • Gimmeabreak78

          That’s not exactly how it works. You are alleging that the state can simply attach paternity to any man the woman designates with or without the man’s cooperation. That is not true. If the child was born within the confines of marriage, then yes, the woman’s husband is presumed to be the child’s legal father. Then it becomes the man’s responsibility to dispute paternity at that point if it is in question. However, when a man who is not married to the mother denies the paternity of a child, the state will look for the man using Social Security, IRS, employment records, etc in order to subpoena him for genetic testing. If the man cannot be located, the state doesn’t just take an “oh well, we’ll just stick him with paternity” attitude. Also, in most states, women can no longer put a man’s name on a birth certificate if he is not there to sign.

          • vladimir76

            You are wrong. Woman can name anyone to be the father of her child without proving anything. And in fact, she is allowed not to allow DNA test saying stupid things like the DNA test will hurt the child.

            And also when baby is born in the marriage the husband is presumed to be the father. You are right about that. But where is the guarantee that she didn’t “ef” around and created the baby with someone else? After six months even if the husband proves that she cheated on him and the kid is not his he still has to pay.

            Also the kids look all the same at birth and what guy has the guts to say “I want DNA test right after the birth in the hospital ” she will cause third world war to him at home.

            • Gimmeabreak78

              I really urge you to get your facts together. A woman cannot just put Barack Obama’s name or Denzel Washington’s name on a birth certificate any more without the man’s acknowledgement of paternity/signature without some measure of genetic testing. Courts are very stringent about that. The state will give a man plenty of time to cooperate with a request for genetic testing. You are also wrong about the mother’s ability to refuse testing. If a man suspects he is the father of a child, he has the right to genetic testing to prove his paternity the same way a woman does.

              • charingb

                I’m cracking up at the visuals of a million little illegitimate Baracks and Denzels running around

              • Ok

                I would suggest that you google “man pays child support not father” to find a huge number of examples of men paying for the children of others even despite DNA evidence.

                • Gimmeabreak78

                  Yes, it is possible for a man to pay child support for a child that is not biologically his, but only AFTER he acknowledged paternity. For example, if a woman cheated on her husband and was impregnated by another man, but the husband signed the birth certificate, then yes, it is possible for a court to still hold the man who ACKNOWLEDGED paternity on the birth certificate responsible for child support even after it is proven through genetic testing that the child is not biologically his. Even in those situations, the man who turned out not to be the father still has legal recourse. You alleged that a woman can just put any man’s name on the birth certificate of her child without any proof whatsoever, and that is categorically false.

                  • Ok

                    Yes, you are correct. While I have heard the rare case where someone was unaware that he was put on the birth certificate, the vast majority of men paying for someone else’s children are based on missing the deadline to dispute the paternity.

                    • Gimmeabreak78

                      No they are not. The vast majority of men who are paying child support for someone else’s child are doing so/have done so because they never doubted their paternity, i.e. married men, men in relationships they assumed were monogamous, etc.

              • Kendra Koger

                Exactly, because when I gave birth, my husband left the hospital for a day and they wouldn’t allow his name on the certificate unless he physically wrote it and signed a waiver with a lawyer there. It could have been because I didn’t take his last name, so they were being cautious before immediately labeling him as the father (or believing me to be his wife). Or it could have been how Illinois runs things. But, it definitely wasn’t a *point finger* “That’s the father!! Get him!!”

    • GirlSixx

      WTH??!!!
      But then again it’s his fault for not challeging the paternity once he received the petition… Get the blood test man!!!!! Why would any man let an challenge paternity go unchalleneged unless he thinks he’s the father..

      • Melyssa

        Exactly!! This is the 21st century!!!! What man is trying to have his paycheck garnished just on some paternity suit speculation that he is the daddy without getting PROOF. The court system has come along way since the 60’s and 70’s in regards to evidence.

        • vladimir76

          Again…. The problem is that

          1. He may not even know that be has been caused of fatherhood. According to the law women don’t have to prove that he has been served papers. Paternity accusation is the only thing where you don’t have to prove that the guy got the papers. Everything else, divorce or any lawsuit you have to prove that the defendant was served only in case of paternity you do not have to prove it. All women need to do is to send the papers to the guys last known address which could be her own address if they lived together or where he lived in the past. And since he never gets the papers, one day after six months he finds that his wages are garnished.

          2. Most kids look the same at the time of their birth. Most guys are not suspicious of not being father until much later when it’s already too late to challenge the paternity.
          Can you imagine the scenes in the hospitals the women would do if he would want to have DNA done on spot when the baby was born?

          • SheBe

            You are right. Women often send the needed paperwork to the wrong address so the alleged father has mo opportunity to even contest. My husband and I had my baby a year ago and there is a TON of paperwork to sign when you are married and even more when you are not. I asked the nurse about the huge pile (ok maybe 10 pages but still) of information needed and she said it regards paternity and care of the child. She said its amazing the foolishness that goes on regarding paternity and this is the states way of weeding down all the unnecessary mess that could happen.

        • vladimir76

          No, it has not. Certainly not when it comes to paternity evidence. In fact doing the just think is boycotted by feminists and shark lawyers who are cashing on this. They try preventing DNA tests saying that it will harm the kids or destroy families if the guy finds that h is not the father, best interest of the child etc. So, no, the system is bad as of today and didn’t change much to be just.

  • http://www.yourtango.com/users/cheekee-baby cheekee baby

    Seems like a legal and moral quagmire. Even more reason for women and MEN to plan their children with their spouse and not have an oopsie with their jump-off/booty call.

    There’s a reason why sex shouldn’t be had irresponsibly and all Willy Nilly with anything that will have you.

  • futuremd

    Remember the sex ed. video in high school how babies are made? That never changed. Don’t have sex and your risk of pregnancy drops to zero% . Have sex, and risk of pregnancy increases to over 50%, choose you partner carefully before engaging in intercourse. . The best policy, boys and girls, get to know the person well enough to the point of considering marriage then take your chances.

  • kierah

    There are things that men can do proactively to prevent impregnating women before they ready. The onus needs to be on both parties to prevent pregnancy because it sho nuff needs to be on both parties to raise and support a child.

  • Gimmeabreak78

    For Laurie Shrage to assert that because one consents to an activity does not mean that one consents to all the accidental outcomes of said activity is ludicrous. She should probably tell that to a traffic cop or GEICO the next time she gets into a fender bender. Just because you didn’t mean to back into a pole or rear end someone doesn’t mean that you are not responsible for the outcome; so just because you don’t mean to get someone pregnant doesn’t mean you aren’t responsible for the outcome. Why would any grown person assert that he/she should not be responsible for accidental outcomes (read: consequences) of their own behavior? There are just too many levels of stupidity in Shrage’s argument. I would kindly ask the author, who’s job is it to make sure you don’t become a parent before you are ready if it’s not yours?

    • Bits

      Amen.

    • Shiva Amina

      Excellent point, but let us not also forget about those men who want to be there and are forced out of their parenting opportunity because the woman doesn’t want to consent. I think she’s driving home the point that when a woman wants out no one holds her to a birthing/parenting responsibility, but every time it happens to a man he is subjected to whatever the woman wants regardless of his feelings on the matter. It takes 2. It’s not always about what she wants. Women have to take responsibility for their sexual choices as well.

      • GeekMommaRants

        Women are held responsible for giving birth and raising their children. When a child is born, the parents are the closest relatives to that child. Ignoring your own blood, is a curse, on the one who ignores. This is a lie????

      • Gimmeabreak78

        To your point about women having to take responsibility for their sexual choices, I humbly submit to you that they already do. They either choose to terminate their pregnancies, put their children up for adoption after carrying the pregnancy, or (as is most commonly done) they simply choose to raise the child with or without the father’s participation.

        With regard to men being forced out of parenting opportunities because the woman doesn’t want to consent, are you talking about abortion or BBMS (i.e. Bitter Baby Mama Syndrome)? You cannot reasonably expect a man to have a say in a pregnancy his body will not endure. That is akin to execting to have a say in whether a man has a vasectomy or not. If you are talking about the latter (BBMS), then men have legal remedies to enforce their right to have access to their children.

        • inessa

          are you joking??!! So for you to give your baby to adoption is taking responsibility?! It’s exactly like a man giving up his baby!! it’s EXACTLY the same! So you think carrying a baby is enough to say you take responsibility? and abort is taking responsibility? And since a man doesn’t have a say in something his body will not endure , why should she have a say in a role that he didn’t want to play?

          • Gimmeabreak78

            Giving your child up for adoption is not the point. The point is going through the nine months of pregnancy in order to get to the point of giving the child away. Like it or not, pregnancy is a huge physical responsibility whether a woman chooses to keep the child or not.

            • inessa

              oh please…some women go right back to work after giving birth!!! (see all these singers and career women..)A woman NEEDS not more than 3 months to recover from giving birth! The rest of the time is essentially there to create a bond with the child..plus, women who abort their children don’t carry them nine months! So to you, a man should be forced into fatherhood because the woman actually “take responsibility” for nine months??!!!So he has to pay for the fact that he’s not the one getting pregnant??

              • Gimmeabreak78

                I see you have decided to skip over the most important part of what I said, i.e. the nine months the woman is actually pregnant and the physiological, hormonal, and economic changes thereof. I never alleged that women who abort their pregnancies carried their children for nine months. You initially responded to me about women who choose to put their children up for adoption, so I (unlike you) stayed on topic and addressed that specific issue. Apparently, you didn’t like the truth of my statements, so now you are trying to assert that I am saying the same thing about women who choose to terminate their pregnancies, which, clearly, I am not. A man is not “forced” into fatherhood. A man who engages in consensual sex accepts the potential risk of fatherhood like a person who gets behind the wheel of a car accepts the potential risk of a collision.

          • Anthony blak martian Tinney

            That`s why prostitution should be legalized.A man can get cheap disposable sex,and a women can avoid a pregnancy she does not want.

    • Nikia D-Shiznit

      So, a radio host just got through blaming single black women for messed up kids, but guys feel like they are being forced into fatherhood? Being a grown up means taking responsibility for outcomes. When children result from sex, people need to take responsibility. No one force him to have sex without a condom. If he does, he’s asking for it. Take responsibility for your genitals. Don’t want kids, use protection.

      • Zanthador64

        You really seem an idiot. You do realize that condoms fail 6% of the time right? And the only other way to stop yourself from procreating as a male is to have a vasectomy, a costly surgery which if left un-reversed for more than 5 years can become permanent.

        So the only choices to males in today’s world for birth control is either to potentially sterilize themselves or use a method which fails 6% of the time. Which of course fuels the ‘Don’t like it then don’t have sex’ line, which is the worst sort of logical fallacy I’ve heard from the pro-life crowd, something that women in general seem all to ready to dismiss.

    • Zanthador64

      Amen, which is why I feel that abortion in ALL cases is morally wrong. After all, if men shouldn’t be able to opt out why should women be able to abort 90% of the time when its purely for convenience?

      • Gimmeabreak78

        Although I respect your belief that all abortion is morally wrong, to characterize abortion as simply a matter of convenience is a gross distortion of the complexity of the issue. Going to the gym one mile from your house instead of the one 20 miles from your house is a matter of convenience. Choosing not to carry a pregnancy to term because you don’t have the financial, emotion, or healthcare support have a healthy pregnancy and conduct parenthood successfully is NOT “purely for convenience”.