Most people, even those who call themselves “feminist” or “progressive,” have a hard time wrapping their heads around why a mother wouldn’t have custody of her children, says Christina Vanvuren. The general consensus appears to be that any woman who would willingly give up her child must not really love her child.
“Then, when they find out that my non-custodial status came about because I chose to not be with my daughter every day — and not as a result of addiction, abuse, or neglect — the situation becomes even harder for them to grasp,” notes Vanvuren.
Of course, some mothers who are non-custodial parents are unfit or “selfish.” But these characterizations “belies a powerful gender bias that still permeates nearly every aspect of our society. Most of us have been taught, either directly or contingently, that mothers are and should be the primary caretakers,” argues Vanvuren. Period.
But there is far more to their story…