A perfect wedding, followed by a perfect after party and you start the life of your dreams. Sounds familiar right? Well, sometimes, this doesn’t happen. Sometimes you are left alone with a huge responsibility of a baby. You could be divorced, unmarried or widowed. The underlying fact is that you have to do it on your own now.
Being a single parent is not a life full of struggles, but a journey for the strong – Meg Lowrey
So how do you cope with being a single parent. I have chosen a few of the things that I’ve learnt in my two years of being a single mom.
You are not alone:
Believe me when I say this. This must be a huge deal for you but there are lots and lots of single parents out there, be it some celebrity or someone close to you. So don’t feel alone. Socialize with single parents near you. They have been where you are now so they might help you in a better way. If you want to get added to a secret single moms facebook group DM us on instagram.
End the pity party
The other parent left. Big deal! Think of it as the best thing that has ever happened to you and start from there. Trust me being a single parent is better than being in an unhealthy relationship. So stop feeling bad for yourself.
Build a support group:
Now this is the most important step. Have people you trust and people who love you around you. It could be your family or friends. I couldn’t have done it without my family ever.
Don’t hesitate to ask for help:
One thing that is common for mothers whether single or in a relationship is that we don’t like to ask for help. We have this imagine of a super-woman doing everything by herself. That is not healthy. Period. You should ask for help even if it means someone watching your child while you have a cup of coffee in peace. Say that you need help. It doesn’t make you a bad mom.
Budget your expenses:
This is crucial. Raising a kid even with income of both parents is hard let alone being the sole earner and the only one responsible for your child’s every need. You might be getting childcare expenses or not. Still you need to budget your spending. Give maximum share of your income to Home expenses like rent, electricity bills, grocery, school fee, and stuff for the child then save a small part as well. Also if there is money left behind after spending for the necessities, don’t hesitate to splurge on yourself. Buy that dress you saw in the mall.
Find a good day-care:
Now as a single parent you have to work twice as hard to have the life you deserve. The next thing that comes to your mind is where’ll I leave my child? If you are living with your parents, it is a blessing. To have someone from your family watch your child is the best thing. You can go to work with a sense of peace. But if this is not the case, your parents live in a different city or they are working as well, you need to find a place for the baby to stay while you are away. The best choice here is to opt for a good day-care rather than leaving your baby with someone with no professional experience. Ask your friends and colleagues for recommendations. You can also find such services online. Choose the one with best reviews and the facilities you want. Don’t compromise with the quality.
Build trust with your child:
Explain to them about your status if they are old enough to understand. Never lie to them in such situations. Remember, they’re going to base their life on what you tell them.
Don’t forget yourself:
Although it is natural to devote most of your time and earnings to your child, but don’t lose yourself in the process. You were someone before you became a single parent, that person matters. Develop a hobby, be productive. Sure that means readjusting your priorities. Make peace with the past, find your own closure. I can’t stress the importance of “Me-time” enough. Go to the gym, make visits to the salon a regular thing, buy what you want, take a vacation for yourself!
You didn’t set out to be a single parent. But set out to be the best parent you can be and that shouldn’t change. What say moms? I sincerely hope that my experiences help you guys in some way. Feel free to add more of your tips.