single father

Dave Wilton dave at WILTON.NET
Sat Dec 20 14:02:55 UTC 2008

>From Black's Law Dictionary, 8th ed.:

"joint custody. An arrangement by which both parents share the
responsibility for and authority over the child at all times, although one
parent may exercise primary physical custody. [...] An award of joint
custody does not necessarily mean an equal sharing of time; it does,
however, mean that the parents will consult and share equally in the child's
upbringing and in decision-making about upbringing."

It sounds like the mother has primary physical custody in this case, which
is why the father is making child-support payments.

I would not use "single father" in this case, since the mother appears to
have most of the day-to-day care of the child.

-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of
Benjamin Barrett
Sent: Friday, December 19, 2008 11:22 PM
Subject: Re: single father

It looks like a mix-up or else that something is missing to me. If he
has custody, he shouldn't have to make support payments.

Possibly, the support payments are back payments that he missed in the
past. BB

On Dec 19, 2008, at 10:58 PM, Victor wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Victor <aardvark66 at GMAIL.COM>
> Subject:      single father
> There seems to be an evolution of single fatherhood. My assumption has
> always been that the term was, essentially, custodial. So, a single
> father would have been someone whose spouse/partner/mother of child
> either died or left the household, leaving the children behind. This
> would also include more rare cases where the children were placed with
> the father by a court order (for whatever reason). Thus, single
> fathers
> would, generally, have been more rare than single mothers, as it is
> much
> easier for a father to disappear without acknowledging a child.
> Not so now.
> <>
> <blockquote>
> As disappointing as it was for Campo to lose a job that he liked, this
> 21-year-old has more responsibilities than most of his peers working
> retail. He's a single father who recently won joint custody of his
> 2-year-old son. Campo is also putting himself through school, studying
> math with hopes of becoming a high school calculus teacher.
> But his priority right now is making his child support payments.
> </blockquote>
> Child support payments usually imply shared and non-primary custody,
> a.k.a. non-custodial parent. So, unless I am completely misreading
> this,
> the use here is of two "single parents"--both custodial and
> non-custodial. Is this in common usage now? Or is this simply an
> isolated incident?
>    VS-)
> ------------------------------------------------------------
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