How Black Tax Can Financially Cripple Single Moms

How Black Tax Can Financially Cripple Single Moms

Investec defines Black Tax as

Black tax is a term for financial support that a professional or entrepreneur of color is obliged to provide to their family on a continuous basis outside of their own living expenses.

Unfortunately, being a single mom does not excuse you from paying black tax. Depending on the kind of family setup, you might need to be consistent or even pay more. It is not wrong to help your family and their financial needs, however, we also have to accept how it can cripple single moms financially.

Having been raised by a single mom who also happens to be the sole financial support of her mom, sibling, and others. I was able to see how strained she would get just to make sure she would provide for both homes. When I grew up and started working, I accepted the financial responsibility that I was given in the family.

Now that I am a mom, a single mom for that matter, it is easy to spot the financial drain that I am subjected to because of the black tax. Let me share more on this.

Black Tax

How Black Tax Financially Cripples Single Moms

First of all, let me make it known that I do not hate the idea of the black tax. Helping families who are unable to support themselves financially should be something we should do once we are doing well ourselves. However, it would be unrealistic if we never shared the negative effects of the said system. This is meant to do just that.

1. Family Thinking You Earn Millions

One of the problems with this paying this tax is that you often have family members thinking you earn so much when you are getting peanuts. In my case, I was the first one in my family to get a bachelor’s degree. As much as it was a happy moment, it also meant that I had people thinking I would automatically earn millions of money.

Each time I state how much money I make, it is taken with so much mockery. I get questioned about my lifestyle and how I can support it. Regardless of the many explanations that I do, none are ever believed.

What I get is requests for more money. I have gotten to understand that this is so common with folks that have never left the village. Their concept of relatives living in the ‘city’ is that we are all rich and are living large.

2. Lack of Financial Discipline

Another problem that is also evident most times is the lack of financial discipline with your extended family. Most of them have thoughts that once they ask, they are given. This makes them spend money recklessly without much care about the drain that the provider might be facing.

There are some who try to empower their dependents by providing capital for small businesses. The idea is to allow them to use the profits for smaller bills and other necessities around the house. Unfortunately for most, this money is used for other luxuries that often cannot be named.

3. Growing Extended Family

Most associate the black tax with helping parents financially, but that is not always the case. Most have to support their parents, siblings, siblings’ children, siblings’ children, cousins, and more.

In an economic crisis like the one we are currently experiencing, it is tough for a lot of young people who are providers for many. Especially when you are financially strained to support the current dependants, and then they decide to have additions to their own families on your paycheck.

How it black tax affect single moms emotionally

One of the things that every single mom tries to do is provide for their child’s needs and wants. No mom wants to ever see their babies lacking anything in the world. Unfortunately, having to support extended family might hinder that very thought. Oftentimes, moms will find themselves having to limit what they can provide to their children so that there is enough to share with other family members.

This is not easy at all. I have lived in a world where I would ask my mom for things but would have to wait for so long to get them because her last penny had to be sent to the village. As a mom, you also have to pray that your children are very understanding of the situation that you are in. If they are not, they are capable of growing hatred towards you because they might feel like they are not a priority.

Another problem that black tax brings to single moms is the thought of not leaving an inheritance to their children. For one, I know that there is no inheritance from my mom. But it hurts me to think that I might be heading into the same rabbit hole. It gives me sleepless nights to think that if I do not handle things right, I might never leave any inheritance or trust fund for my child to use.

And if we are to look deeper into this matter, we will realize that it is the main reason why black people do not have any generational wealth. There is never enough to actually save up, most of it is spread towards the survival of our many families.

Then there is the guilt that single moms might experience when they want to invest in self-love activities. The thought is that a bit of relaxation or fun is an opportunity cost for someone else’s feed.

It brings a lot of financial misery, worse for single moms. But somehow, it is our show of love and appreciation for the sacrifice that the family does for us. So we keep on.

What are some of the hurdles that you have had to cross because of black tax? Share them in the comment section below.

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