By Choice or Chance (2013)

24 Feb

In the western world the term single mother doesn’t raise much eyebrows. Chances are that you know at least one single mother and it’s something which has become something normal. These women have decided to take care of their children alone and (usually) succeed in having a working career and given their kids the affection they need. Our society allows it and there are enough options in regards to daycare to make it possible.

This isn’t the case in big parts of the world as this documentary clearly shows. Shot in Thailand, it paints a picture of a culture where the man is the pillar which holds the “house of the family” together. Being a single mother is not accepted in the Vietnamese culture and parents are ashamed should their daughter make that choice. It takes a lot of determination by single mothers to make that step and fight for their equality and empowerment. Director Marijn Poels talks to three women who stood up, fully aware of the consequences their decision might have.

These are three women who have run into issues, but who decided that their own happiness and that of their children should be the most important. The three single mothers in this documentary have managed to be succesfull without a husband. One of them is a singer, while another has set up her own company with some staff, which allows her to spend more time with her children.

The story which is told might not be that shocking if you watch it as someone living in the western world, but I can imagine that if you are not this documentary could be very inspiring and motivate someone in taking steps towards emancipation, freedom and equality. The documentary will have its premiere on March 8th (International women’s day) and I hope it will have that impact, even if there are only a handful of women who decide to take those steps as change has to start somewhere.

Score: 7

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