posted on Sep, 14 2011 @ 01:52 AM
LOL! I took the "leaving" option.
There is also the common problem of getting a job, but it isn't enought to pay for housing and food. (forget entertainment and clothing-
entertainment is a silly luxury, and clothes can be always gotten from others who don't want them anymore).
I ran into this problem as a young single parent in the US, and at that point the next option was to get on welfare- which meant I'd have to stop
Since then, I tend to think that the kind of system some other countries have, which is more progressive make sense. If you are on welfare, for
example, and you get a job, you are not cut off completely if it is not paying enough to live, you can continue to get a small amount to help, until
your pay goes up, you work up to a better paying job, and the aid dwindles down in consequence.
The theory that only the dire cases deserve any help (okay, I see the logic) has the secondary effect of influencing people to drop into the "dire
case" catagory and not be able to crawl out (sometimes theory doesn't work in reality).
Especially in a culture and system that sees employment opportunities as something you work upwards progressively through experience (you must start
at the bottom and work your way up). It means that to get on that ladder, you must accept the minimum wage type jobs first and live on that until you
can earn something on the next rung. A problem when the minimum wage is not enough for basic survival needs. (at least it wasn't in the area I was in
at that time).
I am a hardworker, and truly believe in being independant, and willing (and did) go without food for days, and live in a corner of someones garage for
a couple of years, all to keep working without turning to welfare. But having a child- choosing not to feed him for a couple days was not something I
felt I had the right to do. I have the right to choose hardship and struggle if it made my conscience clear, but children? Do we have the right to
make that decision for them? Do parents not have the responsibility to make sure they have their basic survival needs met ? This was a terrible
question for me that caused me a lot of turmoil at that time.
I still struggle with it looking back, looking at pictures of my skinny, skinny baby son, remembering scraping rice grains from the corners of an old
cupboard to try to find enough to feed it to him, asking neighbors if they had any old veggies they were going to throw away..... but I can proudly
say I did it without help. I never became a dependant, and got trapped in that system. Great. I am a true american! But my son suffered from
inability to thrive physically, and to this day, has a skeleton like body and has a tendancy to not take care of himself. I guess he never learned it
because I didn't do it. I couldn't do it. It was all or nothing in that system, and I chose nothing.
But now? I wonder if I made the right choice and if I would counsel a young woman in that situation to do the same, or whether I'd just say, "forget
working, just get on welfare, take the food stamps, think of the kid before your pride."