Hello again my lovely readers, I have another guest writer visiting today, a fellow single mum Regina, who wanted to share her experiences of becoming a single mum. Please make her feel welcomed.
As a newly single parent, taking care of two very young children, every day comes with something new that I have to face because I am in this situation. From the challenges of finding the right childcare to the challenge of maintaining consistent discipline with the father not living at home, I am anxious to find out what other surprising things this new chapter in my life will bring.
Fears and negativity aside, there are some issues which came with single parenting that I knew long before I signed those divorce papers and so today I thought I would share the five things I knew would be prominent issues, so that you will have one less surprise to deal with in this new phase of your life.
- Forget work-life balance
As a mother, I have always felt guilty – of not spending enough time with my babies, of not being efficient enough or organized enough despite having a partner to help me with the children. So when it came to me being a single parent, I knew that I would face more issues that would make me feel guilty, like depriving my children of growing up in a‘normal setting’ and depriving them of their father on a daily basis. "Single parents tend to be helicopter parents because we feel guilty," says Stacie Martin, a Dallas-based, single parent advocate, "we tend to take care of everything, to make up for our family structure, rather than finding balance."
- I will miss some things my children do
Even as a married mother with a full time job I have missed some of my children’s milestones and I knew going into divorce that I would miss some things my children do when they are with their father. Sadness is often my go to sentiment on these things but rather than seeing it as missing out on some things, we can choose to turn the situation around and see it as the memory our children are sharing with their father. We will have our moments, which we must savor.
- Being everything to them
Regardless of whether your partner is very present in raising your kids or you are doing most of the work, you will go into the single parent world knowing that you must be everything to them when you are with them. Like any other mother, I know my kids need that sense of security and when I am with them I feel the need to ensure my kids feel safe by them knowing I can protect them as much as their father can − I can be their nurse, their confidant, their entertainer, the person they can cuddle with and anything else they wish and need.
- Lack of support
No matter how many friends and family I was surrounded with, I knew that I would not have an ally to help me deal with certain issues − like not having someone to turn to when my child had a pea stuck in his nose. I went from mornings spent walking barefoot in my cozy maternity clothes, during my maternity leave, to having to deal with chaotic mornings with throw up and tantrums, work duties and no one to blame.
- Dealing with new girlfriends/wives
Having my kids away from me so they can spend time with their father is hard enough, especially since I am a control freak who needs to oversee everything. This in mind, I can only imagine the challenges of dealing with a new girlfriend or possibly a new wife my ex-husband will marry − one who will be a part of my children’s life.
Then again, this is something that hasn’t happened yet, so I will have to deal with it if and when it happens, just as I will deal in the best possible way, keeping in mind my children’s needs and happiness, with the surprises that are still to come!
Author Bio: A parenting writer, Regina empowers women through her writing and modern parenting tips. If she’s not writing, you can catch her surfing the web for what’s new at Fertile Mind.