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The Truth of the Benefit of the Intact Family and Church Attendance Bubble to the Surface

Posted by MDViews on January 10, 2009

Children pay the price of their parents sin. Sins of selfishness, sloth, sexual immorality, drunkenness, drug abuse, neglect–I could go on–have a profound effect on children, all negative. Good news comes out of this study of families, religious instruction and the social benefits to kids. The results are no surprise to Christians, and are worth citing and discussing.

Two researchers studied children ages 6-17 and the effect of the two parents in the home and regular church attendance on social ills of children. They found that

An intact two-parent family and regular church attendance are each associated with fewer problem behaviors, more positive social development, and fewer parental concerns about the child’s learning and achievement. Taken together, the two home-environment factors have an additive relationship with child well-being. That is, children who live in an intact family and attend religious services regularly generally come out best on child development measures, while children who do neither come out worst.

They controlled for social class, childhood poverty, family income, low parent education and minority status and found they two parent family and regular religious attendance continued to be a benefit, even taking these negative factors into account. Several other studies have found similar findings. Basically, children in a home where mom and dad are married and attend church do better in every parameter that can be measured.

These findings fly in the face of social science dogma that race, poverty, social class and income are the only things that matter. When Christians lobby in the public square for policies that would encourage and protect the intact family and encourage religious participation and cite data and studies showing the benefits, the liberal social scientists (liberal social scientist–sorry about the redundancy) say the studies are not valid, as those studied made more money, or were white, or had more education.

Social “scientists” are a bit like the pro-aborts. They view anyone who opposes their party line as a religious nut, a stupid, head-in-the-sand ignoramous who ignores the obvious benefits and necessity of our current social welfare system and education system. The current system that keeps the poor, poor. Keeps the uneducated, uneducated. Keeps the minorities on the plantation (urban ghettos). Keeps religious ideas and morals out of the education and the public square. Keeps families broken by usurping the father’s role with a government check. The system that encourages out-of-wedlock births.

The current system is not defensible, in my opinion. (What to take its place? That would be a whole other discussion.)

So, thank you Family Research Council and Drs. Nicholas Zill and Philip Fletcher for your good work. I’m thankful the the truth keeps bubbling to the surface.

Posted in Faith and the Glory of God, Family, Marriage, Politics | 2 Comments »

The Pain of the Uncommitted Male

Posted by MDViews on December 2, 2008

Since venturing on my medical career some 30 years ago, our culture has undergone a sea change in how marriage, fornication (sex outside of marriage) and infidelity are viewed and practiced.

In 1978, there was still some shame at conceiving an out-of-wedlock child. Couples shacking up were somewhat unusual and certainly far from mainstream. Having an affair often led to divorce.

Since that time, I first noticed, especially in the lower socio-economic patients (poor folks with weak family and social connections) that out-of-wedlock pregnancy became more commonplace and accepted. Then, living with boyfriends became more accepted. Now, the practice of shacking up is accepted by middle and high income people with good education. With no shame. It’s not just OK, it is often celebrated.

I often ask my pregnant patients or even gynecology patients if their live-in boyfriend is husband material. Many times, I get a smile and a “yes”, but then it is followed by a “but not now. We have to do xxxxx first.” Which is generally make more money, buy a house, pay for a car, finish school and on.

But I also get a response from many to the effect of “Why would we marry? Who cares?” Marriage is now so unknown to large segments of our population that the thought of marriage is not even entertained.

I explain that she will be the one hurt in the end by such a relationship. She will have given herself to a man with no attachment, meaning he can leave at any time without repercussions, except child support, if the state can find him. If he leaves, she is left with the shattered hopes and dreams, the risk of STD’s, the children, the poor job, the poverty while he goes on his merry way and shacks up with the next one.

I usually get the “but we aren’t breaking up. We are together.” response. It is heartbreakingly sad. I marvel at the denial. Truly, denial is not just a river in Egypt.

Just today, I talked with a patient who had been with her boyfriend for several years. When she pushed him slightly to get married, he said he just wasn’t sure. They were living together! So, she is now a bundle of tears and feels used, betrayed and cheated out of several years of her life. And for what? His selfishness.

When a couple shacks up, men are in the drivers seat, enjoying the ride. They get the companionship, the sex, the home comforts, the married lifestyle with the freedom to leave anytime the relationship gets sticky or uncomfortable or unsatisfying as all close relationships eventually do. They never have to do the hard work of relationship and reconciliation. They never have to pay an emotional or financial price for their misdeeds.

PMS? Hey, I’m outa here. No sex tonight? See ya later, baby. Not enough money for a motorcycle? Good luck on your own, sweetie, I just bought a Harley and need my whole paycheck. New baby has colic? Well, call your mom, because I met this girl at work and I’m moving in with her.

So women who choose this lifestyle end up hurt and hurting. My heart goes out to them. Shame on a man who would bed a woman and not have the courage to commit in marriage. Shame on a woman for allowing such behavior in a man. God help the children born of such a loose union.

I’ll post more on this in the future.

Posted in Family, Marriage | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

…At The Extremes

Posted by MDViews on January 6, 2005

Yahoo! News – Study: Extreme Preemies Have Disabilities

AP trumpets a study from this weeks New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) about severely premature infants from 22 to 25 weeks and their development over the first 6 years of life. To no one’s surprise, these most tiny of the tiny often survive with some disabilities, sometimes profound disabilities when they do survive. About 1/2 have what are described as moderate to severe disabilities including CP, vision or hearing loss and learning problems. One third are mildly disabled and 20% are OK.

I don’t have access to the NEJM having let my subscription lapse. However, the purpose of the article, I think, is mentioned in the fourth paragraph: “Guidelines call for not resuscitating the most severely premature babies…”

Some thoughts come to mind…

First, none of this information is new, so why the big splash in Yahoo? Why state the obvious with such a sense of discovery?

Because an article this big and this important and this authoritative will provide cover for doctors and parents who want to pull the plug on the very premature.

I’ve worked with neonatologist angry, upset, depressed that a couple said, “Yes, doctor, do everything you can to save our baby.” This article will give them cover. It’s easy to see the conversation. “Well, Mr. and Mrs. Jones. I know that your baby’s heart is beating and lungs are breathing and we would like to do all we can, but we have guidelines that show your baby will be a vegetable, so just give up and say good-bye. There just isn’t any hope.” The parents will recoil at the thought. There will be anger and tears, but the doctor will prevail and “do what’s best for the baby.”

Then, think of the premature baby that has been in the nursery for 2 months and has had a stormy course and is certainly looking at a life of disabilities. How long before the “guidelines” get stretched to include that soul into the final solution.

Either life is precious and valuable or it’s not. Either life at the extremes should be protected and defended or not.

Do disabilities disqualify one from life? Is a potential learning disability a reason to pull the plug? Do we have to be perfect to be loved and appreciated on God’s green earth?

Pray that they don’t come for you, dear friend, if perfection is the criteria.

Posted in Euthanasia, Marriage, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »