My new romance, The Awakening, is a dramatic western romance, the 4th book in The Friessen Legacy Romance Series. The Awakening explores an issue of homelessness for single mothers, an issue that is not given much light and is a very serious problem in every community.
Laura is a maid who works for a pittance and is fired right before Christmas. Her last check is withheld by her wealthy employer, unable to pay her predator of a landlord his excessive rent she is forced to live in her car with her young son.
The Awakening is a work of fiction. But rest assured as one of my reviewers noted, “This book could have been taken from the news today. Bad things do happen to good people.”
And over the holidays it is that much harder. Holidays are time for celebrating, families, giving, love, and yes the gift of giving. But when you're poor, have only enough to feed yourself and your child let alone pay for a roof over your head, for many single mothers, holidays are a nightmare...a very stressful time of year. Because they don’t have to give to their child, what others do. And hearing that you just need love, doesn’t take the look of sadness from child’s eyes, when there is no Christmas Tree or gifts for them. Or ease a single mother’s conscious and help them sleep better at night.
A lot of single mothers are barely getting by, living somewhere around the poverty line. And one of the worst nightmares for many is finding a decent place to rent. What many don’t know is male landlords dominate the population. And single mothers become prey to the unscrupulous male landlord who are nothing but predators in disguise. There are no laws that are accessible to a single mother to protect them. They are forced to keep their head down, walk on and not make any noise. Many landlords will refuse to rent to a single mother, and they will give any excuse. I’m sure everyone has heard them.
In smaller communities, resort communities and many of the Islands the focus is on vacation rentals, and what happens to single mothers and children is they’re forced in the summer to live in tents to make way for the wealthy to rent out homes. But what would happen to these communities who employ these single mothers, the children that fill the schools if they left? Many of these communities would die a slow death. Many have said this is the way of the world and the property owner has the right. Yes they do, I will agree there. But morally, it is shameful, and it is not up to governments to solve the problem. This is a community problem, and comes down to right and wrong.
Are all male landlords predators? No they are not. In fact, I have been told of one man and his wife who witnessed a single mother in a similar situation. They approached her, moved her to a cottage they owned, and charged her only what she could afford. They treated her with respect, her children too. There was a mutual respect that existed between them. The landlord--husband went above and beyond to bring her dry wood to burn, picked her and her children up when her car broke down. They gave her kindness, and provided her a home that was well maintained and in good repair. And this single mother was able to get back on her feet, because of this kindness.
If you read the Awakening, Laura lived in a slum, a basement suite that really was unlivable, renting from a landlord who refused to repair anything, and jacked up her rent to something that wasn’t affordable. And when she lost her job, unable to get her last check her landlord suggested other ways for her to pay her rent. On her back. Of course she refused, and did the only thing she could, moved her and her child into her car, in the cold.
I've made no mention of single fathers with children in this blog, as they do not encounter the same issue as single mothers. Because society does view single mothers and single fathers differently, have you ever wondered why?
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