Posts Tagged ‘Homeless women with Children’

ConversationswitCoyfee presents Poverty and The Single Mother

In Black Church, Forgiveness, Homeless Women, women talk on July 11, 2009 at 10:02 am


Poverty and The Single Mother

This essay is a brief of a story that I read in college. I must be honest and share that I am at lost on the author but the feelings reflected thru the writings are truly life altering…please read and reflex..lastly repositon your own thoughts,prejudices, and fears about the subject of homelessness… Coyfee from ConversationswitCoyfee

The thought of poverty woke up fears inside of me that I have harbored for years. The fear that as a single parent myself and my children might end up homeless. I have cried many nights when there seemed like the life she describes so vividly, would be a reality for us, again. Watching a homeless person while she brought me into her world. I could smell the stink she she mentioned. I could see the decay on her teeth. I could feel the shame as her hope crawled out the window leaving her desperate and in deep despair. Please my friends as we watch our president make his way to other countries that have starving and homeless mothers everywhere,please do not turn a blind eye to the ones in your very own cities, your neighborhoods, the subway or train stations, the bus stations, the resturants..Please I plead with you..lay the judgement and prejudice down..pick up the commandment to love thy neighbor as thyself.

 Can you see her skin aging prematurely because of the constant emotional pain. I do not want to imagine the valley of decision she had to live in. She never slept because she had to always stay awake to fight the roaches away from her kids. Can you imagine having to give your children sour milk because the refrigerator does not work? Could you imagine the smell of urine on the mattress where you have to sleep and without any sheets on it. I believed she was pleading with us to look at those afflicted with poverty thru an angry heart, anger that will help you help her and others like her. She reminds us that the poor are always silent.

She begs us not to be silent any longer. She is pleading with us to bring attention to this peculiar institution of poverty, not to allow the world to turn a blind eye to those who are silent.   The purpose of this writing is to bring national attention to the injustice of poverty. I believe does an excellent job of inviting you into her world. She is so descriptive about the smells of urine and sour milk, that you have to smell the stink. Her world is one of dread and pain. Her world is desperate and has little hope for change. This story made me realize that no matter how hard it seems it is not as hard as her life was. I am still blessed and my children are fortunate to have a home with clean linen. They are blessed to have hot meals and clean clothing. We must focus on irradiating poverty, this should be one of the many issues before the state legislators. Our government needs to address this peculiar institution, the institution of poverty. If we will ensure success in our country and improvement in our economy we must address the poverty.

My friends as I think about our role in society, in our neighborhoods, in our entertainment venues, in our places of work and lastly in our places of fellowship; why are their families still homeless? Why are single mothers still having to decide to work or take care of their children. We have saw several cases where young mothers must leave their children home alone to go to work. If they do not work, they do not eat. Why? I desire to stir up your spirit and possibly push you off of yuor comfortable chairs and into a place I call “do something”. What should do? I am so glad you asked. There hundreds of agencies that need volunteers. I am certain that some of neighbors could use extra pampers or maybe milk. Food. Clothing. I do encourage donations but often the red tape between the agency and the family is far to lengthy.  Just give a little something..just a lit..I promise you will feel better the moment you do..

Can I share with you that myself and my children were in a shelter for about three to five months. It was embarassing, shameful, and really difficult. My now ex husband had become abusive and he had choked me in front of my children. I will be somewhat opague about the happenings that drove my family and myself to a shelter. I believe that we as people often pre-judge a person by what we see. So now understand when people found out that we lived in a shelter; they of course thought maybe I was on drugs, or alcohol. Maybe I wouldn’t pay my bills or I was just a lazy mother that sat around and waited on the government to take care of me. Maybe I had decided to get pregnant to keep getting more money from the government. None of that was true. My job at a fortune 500 company had ended and my children and myself were living off my unemployment. Their dad would not pay the support that had been ordered. I must share with you that it is dreadly challenging to go from $1400 dollars every two weeks to $1000. Please keep in mind that when we were married we accumulated quite a bit of debit that was left for me to deal with. I think should also include the fact that I am the proud but single mother of five amazing teenagers, age 18.5 to 12.5.

The shelter was crowded. There were two families to each room. I did make friends and created some lifelong friendships but the fact remains that when we listed the shelter as our address we were looked at differently. Landlords would not rent to us easily. Agencies gave us the damaged donations and were quite hurtful in counseling sessions. This was one of the most painful experiences that we (my family) has had to walk thru. I only share this in hopes that the next time you see a mother and her child(ren) you will allow the Spirit of God to usher in a sense of compassion and not judgement.

Lastly wanted to share this cartoon, though not completely about women and children. I believe it is a clear reflection of America …

Talk2Me>>>Tell me how this story possibly changed your opinion of homelessness? If not tell me why you believe it didn’t?

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