Family Matters: Zuma is correct – being single is not something worth promoting

2012-09-01 12:31

I looked forward to an opportunity to see how the members of President Jacob Zuma’s polygamous family interact on Dali Tambo’s People of the South.

To my disappointment, only Duduzile, husband Lonwabo Sambudla and a son called Edward were featured. I would have loved to see my president at home with Duduzile’s other siblings too.

The lesson I took from my parents is that parenting entails one’s ability to make all one’s children enjoy one’s ­attention, admiration, encouragement and company. How does Zuma do it?

I also missed seeing all the First Ladies in one room next to or around their ­hubby.

The frame capturing MaNtuli preparing food in the background was far too fast.

It did not do her justice. ­Although we were taken into her home, she was almost not there ... more of a prop.

I choose to apportion blame for this to my president’s communications experts who advise on these kinds of things.

However, the president’s comments on family were very correct.

It is not right, “cool” or easy to be a single parent.

I am perplexed by the negative responses he attracted for stating that.

The family unit is the first institution a child is born into and introduced to.

It is the first school of life which grooms a child on morality, values, norms and mores.

It is responsible for how a child’s character turns out.

God had planned for this important work to be undertaken by two people called parents, a man and a woman, in the context of marriage, supported by a strong social system for the broader benefit of self and society.

The president is correct that children teach you so much.

Parents will attest that children humble you and teach you patience and tolerance. However, this is true for both parents, not just women.

Not only is it “not nice” to be a single woman, it sucks.

You have to raise your children literally alone. You are lucky if you have sibling brothers who step in to play the “father-figure” role when ­necessary.

Single women bear the permanent wrath of married women, as they are forever perceived to be “fishing”.

Single women are often ridiculed and treated as social outcasts. After all, they are not Mrs So-and-So, or Bra So-and-So’s wife.

Those who missed the clock and never married are called “Ududelwe nguJambase” (past “sell-by” date) and divorcés are called “Umabuyekwendeni” (returned soldiers).

Married women clutch their husbands as soon as a single woman walks in. Being single is seen as being cheap, desperate and available. Single women do not enjoy respect.

Ask them. It sucks.

The media makes a mockery of “lonely women looking for love”. When you are not in an intimate relationship you are made to appear abnormal or sick.

The president is correct and justified in being happy his daughter has married well.

That is the desire of every parent. He is also correct in helping the nation revive the family unit.

This intervention will go a long way towards saving our children from growing up without the proper support of both parents.

We are reaping the fruits of having a president who is a romantic at heart and who cannot stand seeing single women wasting away.

»Titi is a single parent and a business executive

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