Being a single parent is a challenge, but just as with any type of parenting, the rewards are numerous.
All parenting has its challenges, but single parents face a unique set of circumstances that takes special navigation. With a little planning, you can make these challenges less intimidating.
One Adult Means Double the Work
When a child is being raised by two parents, you have a partner to lighten the load. Being a single parent means that unless your children are at a somewhat independent age, any work that gets done is going to be done by you. This can often feel exhausting and overwhelming. Although most single parents lean towards being independent, it is imperative that you learn to accept help from others when offered, and to ask for it when no one is offering.
Let’s face it; raising children is an expensive endeavour. If you are doing it on your own, it can feel hopeless at times. Find assistance that may be available to you, because many times assistance is there for those who need it – even if your pride has to suffer a little while doing so.
One Adult Means Half the Resources
Finances are not the only resources that feel scarce when you are a single parent. Sometimes you are the resource that there is not enough of. Other times it is resources such as an extra vehicle that are halved in amount with only one parent around.
If you have children involved in activities, and you are trying to juggle work and everything else in life, it can feel like one crazy ride. Try to look for solutions such as finding situations where you can pool your resources with other families who need help. Trade things when possible, like babysitting or rides to school.
Making Major Decisions Alone
This is one of the loneliest parts of being a single parent. It is a heavy feeling to know that you alone are responsible for every decision for your child or children, and that if it turns out to be the wrong decision then you alone are to blame. This may be unavoidable to a point, but certainly look for trusted friends that you can bounce ideas off of and discuss issues that might need some brainstorming and outside thoughts.
Not Enough Time
There is never enough time as a parent. As a single parent, this is especially true. At certain moments you will likely feel as though you are not giving enough time to your children, yet you need to keep going on with everything else because it is necessary as well. Work must continue if you are going to provide for your children, and you need to take a little bit of time to care for yourself as well. Try to make sure to balance priorities, and not let any one aspect of your life overtake the other areas.
Being a single parent takes strength and stamina. You are completely capable of doing this job, and doing it well. All it takes is faith in yourself and a determination to creatively solve the problems that come your way.