Published August 13, 2010
Jennifer Aniston is clarifying her statements about single motherhood that landed her in the hot seat with Bill O’Reilly.
“Of course the ideal scenario for parenting is obviously two parents of a mature age,” she told People magazine. “Parenting is one of the hardest jobs on earth. And of course, many women dream of finding Prince Charming (with fatherly instincts), but for those who’ve not yet found their Bill O’Reilly, I’m just glad science has provided a few other options.”
Earlier this week, while promoting her new film “The Switch,” Aniston said women no longer have to “settle” for a man in order to start a family.
“Women are realizing it more and more knowing that they don’t have to settle with a man just to have that child,” Aniston said at a press conference Sunday. “Times have changed and that is also what is amazing is that we do have so many options these days, as opposed to our parents’ days when you can’t have children because you waited too long.”
But critics slammed her statements as being ill-informed. O’Reilly said on "The O'Reilly Factor" that the comments were “destructive” and diminished “the role of the dad.”
"Dads bring a psychology to children that is in this society, I believe, under-emphasized," he said. "I think men get hosed all day long in the parental arena."
A CBS poll conducted last year showed that the children of single and/or unmarried parents were impacted significantly harder by the economic recession. A 2006 study conducted by the National Center for Juvenile Justice also found that juveniles who lived with both biological parents were less likely to join gangs or break the law than their single-parent or orphaned counterparts.
“(Promoting single parenthood) might be the norm in the Hollywood, but the rest of America believes children deserve and need a mother and a father,” Nathan Burchfiel of the MRC’s Culture and Media Institute told FOX411.com earlier this week. “Life is extremely difficult for single moms, with about one quarter of them living below the poverty line. But of course Jennifer doesn’t have to worry about that given her financial resources.”