I had a Haitian-Canadian co-worker who had had two children with two different fathers by the time she was twenty-six. She had her first at seventeen. The second father had bankrupted her. She worked two full time jobs and her mother looked after the kids. I met her in her teacher job and we went clubbing together a few times. She was intelligent and stunning and wise beyond her years. We were quite sympatico as younger single mothers and we shared some good times.
In one memorable conversation we talked about how easy it is for fathers to walk away. She'd had two "baby daddies" walk (my term, not hers) and I'd had one and both of our mother's had 'lost' our own baby daddies too. Her French accent made her words that much more powerful when she used hand gestures to describe the birth of the child and she drew in the sky a line that represents the umbilical cord. She said: "You see this? The umbilical cord??? It is attached and even though it is severed it represents the 9 months we have been attached to the child but once it is cut it is not like we can walk away...the infant is attached to our breasts then. We mothers are attached. And the fathers? What do they do? They squirt up here [use of hand gestures to illustrate this]. And then they walk away. Nothing is attached. Ever. They can walk away because they ARE NOT ATTACHED!!!"