Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Secret Life of a Dead-Beat Dad

To the outside world he appears to be an ordinary guy. Work. Job. Family. Car. In fact, he's probably doing better financially than most Americans these days.

But appearances can be deceiving.

You'd think any father would be pleased and proud to support his children, enabling them to develop into successful and happy human beings, and through his positive support and actions, providing them with a good role-model.

This goes beyond the call of duty for some men.

Dead-Beat Dad loves to brag about his kids, their successes at college, their studies at prestigious universities abroad... All without contributing one thin dime to their welfare.

What would a real father do if his college-aged children found themselves in desperate need? Wouldn't a loving father move heaven and earth to help his child? Wouldn't he take whatever actions were necessary to ensure his child's safety and well-being?

Dead-Beat Dad would not.

Here is one case study given for your perusal. Feel free to post your comments at the end of the blog.

Circumstance #1: Dead-Beat Dad's child is studying at a foreign university and faces eviction from lodgings.

Dead-Beat Dad's email response to child's desperate cry for help: "Nothing I can do. I'm sure it'll work out."

How would a real father respond?

Circumstance #2: A state university expects a father who claims an honor student on his federal/state taxes to contribute towards said child's college tuition.

Dead-Beat Dad's response: Dead-Beat Dad refuses to pay what the university considers to be a fair "parental contribution" based on his tax return, since the child is listed as his dependent. Honor student child makes a futile attempt to take out more student loans to cover the deficit left by him, but is told by the university that child cannot take out more student loans since child's "parent who claims child on taxes makes enough money to pay the expected parental contribution as authorized by the state." Child is forced to take out more loans from other sources that don't have nearly the same generous terms. Dead-Beat Dad adds insult to injury by refusing to help honor student pay for room and board as well.

What would a real father do in this situation?

Circumstance #3: Dead-Beat Dad forces honor student to sign a contract which sets a minuscule weekly "food budget" that can be docked by committing various "offenses" (i.e. $10 is docked for touching Dead-Beat Dad's or his friend's food in refrigerator). Child is forced to eat on as little as $5 a week because of real or imagined "offenses". Child would have starved during summer break if not for the charity of friends.

Would a father who says he loves his children subject them to such horror and degradation?

Dead-Beat Dad's Mantra?

Could you allow your child to be thrown out on the street? Dead-Beat Dad can.

Could you allow your child to stop a promising college career on your account when you have the financial means to help? Dead-Beat Dad sure can!

Could you deny your children money for food while you flaunt your own private stash in front of their noses? Dead-Beat does--and he doesn't see his actions as abusive.

Could you sleep at night knowing you were hurting your children? Shouldn't children of any age expect only love and support from their fathers? What is your take on Dead-Beat Dad?


Anonymous said...

I'd comment ... but if I censored it, there would be a LOT of blacked out lines....

By Butch F.

Anonymous said...

I'm so grateful for the help my parents have provided me, as an adult when I've needed them. Family doesn't end when you turn 18. I'd suggest Dad consider that one day, the tables may turn and he may be dependent on his children's love and kindness.

Cindy A. Matthews said...

I hear you, Butch! It does make one angry to know such mean-spirited "dads" exist in the world.

And I heartily agree with "family doesn't end when you turn 18." Your adult children will probably be deciding the nursing home you'll be put into--"Golden Acres" or "Stalag 13".

Love and kindness should have no limits on age. Abusing a family member's trust and love at ANY age should be considered a human rights violation, don't you agree?

HopeForDivorcedParents said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jon Klement said...

While Dead-Beat Dad is indeed truly a deplorable creature, your blog doesn't even cover the full extent of the damage he does. One might think that each Dead-Beat Dad individually damages his own children and his own family, but did you know he has an effect MUCH BIGGER that affects OTHER people's children as well?

You see, Dead-Beat Dad, although he is a minority species, is used by the anti-family court system as justification to foster the creation of another species, Destroyed Dad.

Destroyed Dad is a look-alike species. Nature is filled with look-alike species, such as the monarch and viceroy butterflies. On the surface, monarch and viceroy butterflies look the same, but anyone who knows about butterflies can tell the difference. Similarly, Dead-Beat Dad and Destroyed Dad have some superficial similarities. Both are dads. Both are divorced. Both lost in the biased gender war that is divorce court.

But, there, the similarities end. Destroyed Dad, unlike Dead-Beat Dad is the MAJORITY species, although the courts use Dead-Beat Dad as an excuse to create the Destroyed Dad species.

Destroyed Dad WANTS to raise his kids, and he is an excellent father. Unfortunately, Destroyed Dad is taxed with a tax euphemistically known as "child support" that is so onerous that his ability to effectively parent or even function like a normal human being is CRIPPLED for decades.

Destroyed Dads are 10 times more likely than the average American to commit suicide and 20 times more likely than the average American to file bankruptcy. I, personally, know a Destroyed Dad who cannot buy winter coats for his children (of course, the childen's mother, the recipients of this so-called "child support", do not buy coats even though they have the money). I have known children who go without medicine when they are sick because their Destroyed Dad can't get it after ex-wife aggression and judicial thuggery are done raping his paycheck.

I have also met children who will never go to college because their father, a Destroyed Dad, was not allowed to keep enough of the money that he rightfully earned for them to save anything for college. Instead, the girls' mother partied and drank away all the so-called "child support" and left the girls with no college fund. This particular Destroyed Dad was also unable to save anything for his own retirement.

So, you see, Dead-Beat Dad does far more than simply damage his own children, he provides an excuse for judicial thuggery to damage millions of other children nationwide.

Until we stop using a few Dead-Beat Dads as an excuse to wage a war against ALL fathers, this atrocity will continue.

Cindy A. Matthews said...

Very valid points, Jon. Not all divorced dads would deny their children food, clothing and shelter. The Dead-Beats are setting a nasty example and the public at large doesn't always understand the differences.

Maybe the Destroyed Dads can organize and get the Dead-Beats to own up and act like proper human beings? I think there is a subset of males who think because they are physically bigger and stronger than their children (especially daughters) that they can treat them contemptuously because "What's a girl going to do to ME? Ha, ha! Nothing!" Some might even use their daughters to vent their frustrations over their failed marriage, substituting the daughter(s) for the ex-wife as the object of abuse. This is a sign that obviously "all is not right upstairs" in Dead-Beat Dad's head.

Yet another reason for free access to mental health care for all people if there ever was one! Save the children the suffering and shame--save the dad, too.

Aiden M. said...

Dead-Beat Dad sounds like an awful specimen of humanity - but I don't want to insult the rest of humanity that way. It makes me wonder if the episodes you recount are just the tip of the iceberg. What else has the little maggot been doing?

As for Destroyed Dads, I guess it applies as much to destroyed moms. How many ex-wives have suffered the same things?

Cindy A. Matthews said...

Yeah, it does make you wonder what other things Dead-Beat Dad's been up to... Anyone who can treat his own flesh and blood with such contempt would have no problem with "bending the law" in other arenas. Are the authorities even now keeping a close eye on Dead-Beat, waiting for him to slip up? We may yet find this to be the case.

I agree with you, Aiden, that there are plenty of destroyed moms out there, too. Most moms will put their children's interests above their own, and not wish to put their children through more battles, either in court or out of it. Some parents may be "suckers" for going broke helping their adult children out, but at least they're not heartless.

Better to have a heart and be poor than to be rich and have no friends or family willing to have anything to do with you!

A J said...

The guy sounds like a real jerk! It makes me grateful I come from a family where we all love and support each other, through thick and thin.

Cindy A. Matthews said...

Sounds lovely, AJ. :)

Yeah, when it comes down to it, you can give all the "excuses" you like about why you don't help your children out when they need it, but all that proves is that you love your "excuses" more than you do your child.

A sad commentary on the "humanity" of some parents indeed.

Anonymous said...

My child's deadbeat Dad is retired from the canadian military after 30 years and does not help with university housing or tuition. I am considered very low income because of cut hours at work and I am finding it very hard to find additional employment. You think he would be a decent human being and offer to help out living on his pension.

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