A site that calls out dead-beat dads

Posted: May 24, 2008 in Our Expression

This is the first I have heard of this website. The address is sorryassbabydaddies.com. The following was sent to me via e-mail.

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SorryAssBabyDaddies.com

When Fadia Ward found herself a single black mom with four kids, alone with no father to provide for them she was upset. She was upset at the reality of hardship that often comes with being a single parent, and she was upset about her children not getting the financial, emotional, and fatherly support she knows they deserve. When she really sat down and contemplated that anger, she decided to turn it into something both therapeutic and quite unique. Out of Fadia’s personal experiences came the creation of a different kind of website for parents. Knowing what it feels like to be a voiceless single mother in a world of broken black homes and poorly supported single parents, she decided to give single moms a space to share their stories, hold their children’s father’s accountable for their actions, and find strength in the real and present issues that connect single mothers across color lines and socio-economic boundaries.

Her site Daddydontwantme.com is as real and as straightforward as the name suggests. Airing out all the dirty laundry of accused dead beat dads this site primarily features stories from frustrated moms wanting to tell their stories, often times in a brutality honest way. And as Fadia knows from interacting with web readers to being featured on ABC, her site is both loved and hated in the online community. Whether you personally feel her site gives dads a bad wrap or not, the truth remains that many of these men have never been held accountable for their neglect of their children and their roles as fathers, so she is taking all the blows and stepping up to say that’s not right. They are not good enough.

Love it or hate it, but please don’t be quick to judge it because Daddydontwantme.com finally creates a voice for single moms (many of which are moms of color), who feel as though they have been hurt, abandoned, betrayed and left with fatherless children. And as Fadia points out to all featured submitters, it is their responsibility to only tell the truth. Her role is not to provide a place for people to create stories that harmfully attack a person’s good character. She merely wants to put faces and stories together, showing the children who are left behind, the mothers fighting for their children’s rights, and the fathers who have yet to be held accountable for their actions.

But the site does not end there. Hoping to shed light on what parenting should be about, Fadia also features a section on ‘Real Dads’ giving men an opportunity to either share their side of the story or to shed light on how they are playing active parts in their children’s lives. The site also features original video clips like Fadia’s documentary, on which several Junior High School students talk about what it feels like to be without their fathers, many of whom either left, got locked up in jail, or sadly passed away. Videos also include Fadia’s News footage and documentaries made by single moms.

Whether you are a single mother looking to share her story, or any person curious to read these stories and learn more about the struggles surrounding single parenting please visit Daddydontwantme.com and connect with Fadia on the Black Moms Club.

Now to flip the script a bit…. Speaking on the site as both a black woman and a black mother of a black son, at the very least I thinks its important for us to have sites like this because we need not pretend such things don’t exist, nor insist that they are simply dirty secrets we shouldn’t air out. The fact remains that Black Family Unit needs to be rebuilt and in order to do so we must begin by being honest about what’s going on in our communities, holding our black men more accountable for their actions, and ultimately letting our men be men.

I personally am not a single mom, I am blessed to have an amazing black man at my side and I have to fight to keep it that way. I have to fight against my own issues – a strong black woman who sometimes doesn’t know how to let her man take the lead because she’s spent so long doing it for herself. I have to fight against the voices in my head, showing me examples of my mothers and sisters who are single mothers – foolishly believing that if they did it it’s ok to do it but it’s not ok. It’s not ok for us to not have functional family units. It’s not ok to live with out the intimacy that comes with being in a real relationship or to think we alone can turn our boys into men. I have to fight against the demons of death that stole my father, the drug dealers who stole the life of my brother, the police who harass and beat my son’s father for being a black man walking in a black neighborhood. I have to fight the demons inside both of us that have programmed us to sometimes fight each other, because we are slowly but surely learning what it is to love.

He is one of many strong Black Men who exist and thank God for them, but let’s not pretend that years of slavery, oppression, and injustice have not given birth to the men who grace the pages of Daddydontwantme.com as dead beat dads. These are the men we need to find faith in, see them in their chosen and often unchosen state of invisibility. Our invisible black men being put into the system as soon as they hit 16 and walk the streets. Our men leaving poorly funded schools with failed educational systems told they are ACD and everything but intelligent, profound, and worth of a good education. Our men, these faces we see on tv sent to jail for robberies committed when perhaps two weeks prior they were denied that job or still couldn’t seem to rub those two pennies hard enough for us all to survive. Our men turning street dreams into hoop dreams, touch downs, and BET vidoes into fortune 500 Companies from which everyone gets a cut and yet they are STILL cut out of the system, constantly told they are the ultimate cause of it’s demise. And we, the black community at large, who foolishly rise to every occasion mass media gives to shoot them down, clown their triumphs, deny their flaws as our own. Because they are our own.

They are my men. They are our black men and however much the system beats them down we need them to rise to the occasion for I fear we have entered some of our darkest hours. We need black men, black fathers to love their women, protect their children, and provide for their families. We need you to be present and proactive with respect to fixing our issues and reclaiming our civil rights in a system not designed for us to succeed in. We don’t need to be dependent on government checks and we don’t need to be in a place where we have to demand child support. We need to depend on you, because we all need to depend on each other. There is nothing wrong with black pride, there is nothing wrong with black unity. It is not a matter of isolation reverse segregation as other’s might want you to believe. It is a right and an honor to take pride in our birth right, our skin, our people, ourselves.

Each One Teach One

LaShanda Henry

Creator of the Black Moms Club and Multiple Shades of You Online

Positive Websites for People of Color

http://www.msoyonline.com

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Comments
  1. DarkStar says:

    I ran across that site 2 years ago.

    Here is what I wrote and if you read the comments, the site owner has the last comment.

  2. Duane says:

    While I may not be screaming “Tell it, Sis.” with her site, I think that if anything, is a symptom to a real problem that has been brewing for a very long time. While it is pretty obvious that pregnancy does not happen by the woman alone (in other words, it takes two to tangle), many of these women are oftentimes left with the child while the man is free to move on with his life without any extra “burdens” to bear (Yes, a woman could just get an abortion these days, but that can and does oftentimes leave an emotional scar that can take years to heal while the man has moved on).

    While the messenger (the author of this website) may not have her own stuff together, I personally do not believe that that in of itself negates the trend of anger that can be found in many women who are left in this situation. To me, that is the bigger picture I choose to give my attention.

    If anything, stuff like this causes me to take pause and to think about the seemingly never-ending effect of the sexual revolution–nothing else. Men who DO take care of their kids and get around to see others do the same know full well that sorryassbabydaddies.com only tells part of the story. Nevertheless, it is this ‘other’ part of the story that needs the attention of all of us—for the kid’s sake.

  3. I definitely agree with what Duane is saying. I actually reposted this article on one Blackfolk – an LJ Community blog and some posted the following: I don’t know how I feel about the name of the website. It’s a little mean to post pictures of (mostly black) children under the banner “daddydontwantme”. Not only is the grammar suspect (yes I had to go there) but if I were that child I would not want my mother or myself displayed in that way.

    My response to her post is as follows but the point being, we really need to focus on the issues that create these problems rather than judging the site creator or even the way the content is presented…

    Its fine to go there but you need to go deeper than that. I admit that the title through me off on first glance, but I challenged myself to understand if that point of view comes from academic up bringing rather than real analytic thought. Because the reality is suspect grammer or not, these are real stories and there are a lot of single black moms and dead beat black fathers. Whether we want to acknowledge or not is another story. Granted how people speak, or write, or even what they present to you might not be as pleasant as we might like it but there is a big difference between pleasantry and truth. The truth isn’t always pretty, so should we simply fill our lives with lies?

    I would hope that we would want more. I would hope that we could stop focusing on the smaller issues and dig deeper where the real issues exist….

  4. I rarely blog to this degree, so I also wanted to take a moment to comment on Duane’s other point “Men who DO take care of their kids and get around to see others do the same know full well that sorryassbabydaddies.com only tells part of the story. Nevertheless, it is this ‘other’ part of the story that needs the attention of all of us—for the kid’s sake.”

    It reminds me a similar discussion on my group the Black Moms Club, one which someone asked the question ‘Why is it so hard for black women to talk about FATHERS, but so easy to talk about MEN?’

    And this is what I had to say about that…

    – How often do many of us have the pleasure of talking about dear old dad?

    – When having a child? What is the first think black women think of with respect to the father? Do we think he will stay or flee? Do we care about what he thinks about abortion or adoption?

    – How many of us are married so that father, rather than baby daddy is the term we use.

    Slavery, drugs, crack, homosexuality, aids, miseducation, all of these issues have destroyed to relationships between black women and men so badly that the concept of ‘Black Fathers’ has to be completely re-invented and re-instituted into the Black Family.

    I also feel like, on some level the statement misery loves company continues to ring true. Whether some women just enjoy complaining about their men OR simply can not find another way to express the issues they have with the fathers of their children, all the Media or many Black Women ever seem to want to talk about are Sorry Ass Baby Daddies. It’s a stereotype, its a reality, its a hot topic of discussion. Like good will and happy thoughts, good black fathers are not what folks want to talk about. Honestly, it saddens me to say that. Do you know that one of my Mahogany Momma eMagz, was focused on Proud Black Fathers and Positive Black Male Figures and TO DATE, that is the only issue that has not sold one issue. No one cares. We complain about the lack there of, but to acknowldge the good ones, we don’t do it!! And we should! Part of the reason I wrote that issue, created this site, or any site for that matter is because we DO NOT see enough positive Black Images or people enough in media so we HAVE TO start becoming our own media. If you don’t see or hear about good black fathers, how can you talk about them. It’s like Black Children aspiring to be Doctors while we sadly joke about how much we loved the Cosby’s but an upper middle class Black Family with a Dr. for a dad and lawyer for a mom isn’t for us ‘realistic’. When in reality for many of us it is.

    To be quite honest with you I am both tired of hear And talking about the bad in our culture, if that is all we are going to do. I want to 1) Hear some Good and 2) Start seeing some pratical solutions about how to fix the bad and I firmly believe that highlighting the good can help address the bad. We need to show off our Black Fathers, give our boys some one to look up to, give our girls someone to crush on instead of these fools who sadly don’t know better than perpetuating the same damn stereotypes that keep us down as a people.

    We as black women, well we need to do a lot of things when it comes to Black Men, specifically the fathers..

  5. To end my very long rant, I also want to add that Fadia does have a section entitled Real Dads, as I pointed out before. But of course like I said, no one ever notices the good parts. Why should they, when we are so often and so ready to highlight the bad.

  6. Fadia says:

    Thanks L.H,

    All I can say is don\’t hate the messenger………

  7. DarkStar says:

    I don’t hate the messenger, but as I’ve stated before, it isn’t all on the men. And at the time, a man who proved he wasn’t a deadbeat, HAD TO PAY $20 AFTER PROVING IT, to be removed. That was plain wrong.

    I made sure my daughter understood that bad choices of who she gets involved with, be it friends or boyfriends, has an impact on her life. In short, don’t be stupid and respect yourself was the issue.

    Duane, as you stated, it takes two so focus on the two.

  8. Fadia says:

    You know i was going to copy and paste all the letters i have from married women who husbands left them with the children and never looked back but i’m not going to do that.

    I have been at this for two years I have advised and help so many women and MEN I don’t need to worry about the critics and the if you lay down with dogs bit, I’ve heard it all before.

    What I say is stay in your sheltered and limited train of thinking and I’ll get the real job at hand done.

    Shalom

  9. Give it a rest! says:

    How long are unwed black mothers going to continue with this lame “blame” the daddy arguement?

    FACT: Men do NOT get pregnant, have never had the abilty to get pregnant, and will never become pregnant in the future.

    FACT: Women DO get pregnant from engaging in unprotected sex.

    FACT: Unless a man offers to marry you and does so, he has NOT TRULY expressed any desire in having a child with you, and more than likely he does NOT love you, does not want a future with you, but is happy to enjoy have sex with you AS LONG AS YOU ALLOW IT!

    FACT: Teenage boys, drug abusing men, men with criminal records, unemployed men, uneducated men, men that already have children out of wedlock, men with emotional problems ARE NOT good candidates to make babies with!

    Ever heard of the expression; “Why buy the cow if you can get the milk for free?” I guess all of those older women from generations past were just plain stupid and all of these new modern chicks populating our communties with ghetto-bastards left and right know the “real deal”!

    OK, now lets add into the mix all of those black mothers that believe their adult sons are responsible for supporting them……… Really hard to SUCCESSFULLY start a family when your mother “NEEDS” you!

    NOw dont get me wrong here I do know there are many fathers that have turned their backs but it is time to get real and admit that WE (Balck folks) have a unique problem in our communities. It is not just the fathers it is also the MOTHERS that lack responsible values but are living in a society were they pass off their own blame on a man that was ONLY IN IT FOR THE SEX (just like the mothers).

    I find far too many black women are only concerned after the fact. They will lay down with anyone get pregnant and expect the world to feel sorry for them after that they have made a baby that they TOO can barely handle. WTF is the point of now turning to a boy or man who cant even take care of himself and now point the finger of responsibility.

    It is high time we remind our sisters and daugthers that it is THEIR body, and any baby in question will come from them and they will have the ultimate responsibilty, LIKE IT OR NOT! This is a two way street and you can ask many a divorced father that DOES care just WHO society and the court considers to always be the primary parent!

    Now I used to work for a social service agency staffed primarily with college educated black women whose job was to prepetuate the this nasty cycle by providing “services” to unwed single TEENAGE mothers. Maybe it is time to put the blame on those who make over $50,000 a year to encourage this type of behavior. “See, even though you are a 14 year old, uneducated, unemployed, girl who is out thre having unprotected sex with god knows who, when you get pregnant blame it on the 14 year old boy!” Your child will get nothing better in this world by you now placing the blame on dad, but you know what, YOU will feel better because you now have an object to project all of your own stupidity on.

  10. Give it a rest! says:

    More to the point,

    Anytime in this country when a child is born to parents that are not married (contratually committed to each other) that child will be at a major disadvantage to children that are born into committed relationships.

    It really pains me to see and hear black folks argue over how to make the best out of an already broken situation.

    From my experince men that want REALLY want childen get married. Men that really love the woman they are with marry them.

    I am a married man who has dated many women before marriage. Just because I can form a friendly relationship that involves sex does not mean I am interested in marriage and children with a individual, plain and simple. If women can’t handle that they need to step back and exit the dating game. I have no children out of wedlock but I do know that if I had made a child with someone I was not committed to I would NOT be the best father to that child. I simple can’t! If I am not there every night, if I only have a limited say so in how the child is being raised I would step back pay my money and keep it moving. The interesting thing is I am sure I would have still ended up married and with children by someone I loved.

    Black women need to stop defining black man from some silly point of view that they pick up in an ecsense magazine. Just like whitemen, Asian men, Latino men, etc. we do have a set of Male values that come into play over issues of fatherhood and marriage. In other words men do have a choice as to who we will marry and choose to have children with. Just like Wives and mother can take children and up and leave on a man, a man will make a choice to be a part of a family (his offspring or not) andf if a man does NOT LOVE the woman he will NOT stay (unless he’s a broke MF).

    Now, not for nothing but I do know two women personally that has children by marrried men! Can’ think of a better way to create two F*&ked up family situations with one shot!

  11. Fadia says:

    Give it a rest! you sound like a fool…..

    ‘FACT: Women DO get pregnant from engaging in unprotected sex.’

    Fact women get pregnant with protection to NOW THAT IS A FACT.

    FACT: Unless a man offers to marry you and does so, he has NOT TRULY expressed any desire in having a child with you, and more than likely he does NOT love you, does not want a future with you, but is happy to enjoy have sex with you AS LONG AS YOU ALLOW IT!

    I missed the point on this one, but I like how people who oppose my site make the statement a man is without obligation to father just as long as he does not state i love you or marry you.

    FACT: Teenage boys, drug abusing men, men with criminal records, unemployed men, uneducated men, men that already have children out of wedlock, men with emotional problems ARE NOT good candidates to make babies with!

    Fact my son’s father has two degrees one from The University of Pennsylvania Ivy League school and was in the military for 11 years, when we met he was going threw a divorce and had his kids every weekend. He does nothing for my son he has only seen him three times the first year of his life. Oh yeah we dealt with each other for two years before i got pregnant oh yeah and we were using protection.

    So much so he wanted a DNA test because he couldn’t believe he got me pregnant with all the protection we used…..

    Oh yeah my parents were married for 25 years my grandparents on my dad side are still married 57 years later and my moms mom is a widow.

    So what was my disadvantage?

    Wow you no what it is, the men who abandon there children need to steep up. There is no reason to keep having this conversation cuz there are some really closed minded people in the world.

    Oh yeah if marriage was what you say it is why do the courts approve divorces? Nothing is guaranteed

  12. Give it a rest! says:

    Fadia,

    As you have stated the father of your children already had children and was going through a divorce. In all honesty how much did you really expect to get out of a man in a situation like that? Although he may have been with you physically, emotionally he truly was not there.

    Not for nothing but if you were to place the majority of women in a situation like this man was in I do not think they would be too happy about being an unexpected mother again at 30+ years of age with a enstranged family already out there! Think about the emotional burden that is!

    A man’s obligation to his child by law is financial. If the father of your child is making his payments he is meeting his legal obligation. Emotional attachment to a child can NOT be forced! The problem IS how a child is concieved and by who matters a great deal to the man becoming attached to that child.

    Sometimes it appears that far too many sisters absolutely refuse to see the forest through the trees regarding this matter. Lets be honest here and admit that most mothers have different levels of love and attachment to their own children that live with them everyday! I also know of women that have aborted children by some less than eligible men only to have babies by men of more substantial means.

    Sisters need to understand that a man can not be a good father in more than one household. If I were to divorce I would not want anymore children. I would rather be the best dad to the children I already have than be a half-a$$ father to two different sets of children.

    Oh, wait I forgot Love is a two way street between parents and children, those children really do hate it when dad needs to go spend time with those other children.

  13. Fadia Ward says:

    You guys are the ones missing out.

    I have 4 children by 4 men {NOT BRAGGING OF COURSE} but I do and I don’t love one more than the other. I also no mothers who aborted for dumb ass reasons and they will have to answer for those actions as will the fathers who abandon their seeds……

    They are still the mans blood same DNA if people could be more human and not so superficial then life would run better.

    Look there is no right or wrong answers there are just hurt children, and how can you care about the children in other countires who are dieing when you have children right here right in your arms reach that are dieing of a broken heart, losing their souls and spirits.

    Come on people these are children !!!!! Listen to them….

    SorryAssBabyDaddies.com

  14. solacio says:

    I really do feel that if this website was created by a Barbie-esque woman with 2 Ivy League degrees under her belt and these children were not little brown skinned angels, but instead, Tiffany was a pale, cherry-cheeked, pretty blue-eyed little girl with long blonde ringlets hanging down her back………. There would be an Act of Congress initiated as we speak to force men of ALL colors to be responsible parties in the parenting game………… But, alas, the stereotype sets in and noone cares about lil Black boys and girls with no daddies. Right?!? Instead we’ll never acknowledge the high rate of divorce in this country and the effects on divorce’s children. Instead, we will continue to ignorantly, degrade the women who have chosen to use their voice to explain their pains, struggles and hopes concerning the children they CHOSE to nurture. Instead of looking beyond stereotypes and wondering why and how they became single parents anyway, we play the blame game. Well if we’re going to play the blame game, let’s start from the bottom and move up! Let’s just say, “Tiffany, its your fault that your Daddy CHOSE not to be with you, lil boy its your fault your daddy died and got shot. It’s your fault, child that your Daddy won’t congratulate you on your good efforts!”

    Are we kidding here. What does it matter HOW it happened, the fact is that it did. This is NOT a black problem, this is America’s problem! This is the NEW Western Civilization 101. This is an issue that everyone needs to deal with and I am so sick of Adults playing the blame game and wasting time while there are children who need to be loved and nurtured and cared for. I’m disgusted at the pride that “Give it a rest!” displays. The fact that you are married today, does NOT guarantee your holy matrimony tomorrow. And should your matrimonial bliss end in divorce, do you plan on staying single for the rest of your life? Probably not! Do you plan on having more children? I surely hope not because you are going to have some hateful children on your hands, giving that you don’t plan on continuing to love ALL of them. But, I hope you PLAN on renaming yourself Jesus, because only He knows your future. How about you Give It A Rest and do something productive.

    The one thing I noticed in the responses these children gave, that everyone seems to have missed…. These children weren’t asking their fathers to be around 24/7. They were simply asking for some attention, some accolades, some I Love You’s . This is not hard. And sadly, these same children could’ve been in a two-parent household. There complaints and desires are no different than the average child their same age. Instead of being dead, their dad could be a work-a-holic. This is not just a problem of absent fathers, but of men who don’t know HOW to be a Father… And Give It A Rest may have this problem himself. I’m sure you multi-task at work or on the golfcourse or in front of a game on t.v. but you would refuse to give a little more of yourself to human souls. Hmmm. Interesting. All I’m saying is that, there are many problems in our society and men need to have the DESIRE to LEARN how to be FATHERS, whether they are in the home or not. I’m sure there are plenty of 2 parent homes, regardless of race, with children that feel unwanted by their Daddies.

    Instead of getting down to the real issue at hand, we continue to waste our time by wondering how Bonita put him on. Ummmm. I truly thought that we were much deeper than that. But once again, we place ourselves into that stereotypical box of unintelligent opies. Congrats!

  15. Fadia Ward says:

    WTF you said it all,

    Thank you for that wonderful display of intellect.

    The Champ

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