Being a single mum isn’t always easy. That’s probably why nature intended two people to do this whole parenting thing together, but sometimes things don’t come as you thought they would. Sometimes there is no happily ever after and sometimes, you end up being the only one raising your child. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t have it any other way right now, but sometimes there are days when everything gets too much and you just want to sob into a pillow. Sometimes being a single mum sucks.
As a single mum you feel guilty for just about everything: I regularly feel guilty because Amy is growing up without her dad and not seeing him regularly. I feel guilty for losing my patience when I’m tired after a long day of work, household and mothering and I feel guilty because I had to ask her Nan to pick her up from kindergarten the other day because I had a meeting. It didn’t matter to me that I am there every other day of the week, because on day X I failed. I wasn’t there for her. I know that my mum didn’t mind picking her up, she loves having us back home, but guilt is an evil emotion that sneaks up on you when you least expect it. It makes you feel inferior, like you aren’t doing a good enough job as a parent and I know it’s irrational, because it usually creeps up when you compare yourself to someone who is in a completely different situation, but I can’t pretend it doesn’t happen and if it does, it sucks!
Being responsible – ALWAYS!
Another thing that gets a little overwhelming from time to time is the constant responsibility you have when you’re a single mum. Don’t get me wrong, I love that I am the one who is responsible for both our lives. That I’m the one who gets to decide what we do and when we do it, but sometimes the responsibility just gets too much. Sometimes you just want to slam the door and say “Bye, I’m out of here for half an hour”, but you can’t because there’s that little person who needs you, that looks up to you and only has you left as a parent and you wish there was someone else who could be the one who gets up first in the morning or reads the bedtime story.
Worries about the future
I’m not usually a worrier, but since becoming a single mum, I have thought about Amy’s and my future a lot more and it’s usually not the positive aspects that I spend hours thinking about. Of course, I do look forward to holidays or being there for her milestone, but there are also days when I worry that I actually might not be there for them. That something terrible could happen to me, that would leave her on her own and quite frankly, those thoughts scare me to death. It’s not just death or illness that worry me though. Just think about those “statistics” about kids from single parent backgrounds. Who wants to hear that their child might end up incapable of being in a loving relationship because they grew up with just one parent? Who wants to hear that their child is more likely to achieve less than a peer who grows up with both parents? Amy’s dad and I broke up because we weren’t happy anymore, because we weren’t living in a loving relationship anymore, along with some other issues that I won’t get into on the blog, and I am still certain that our decision to go separate ways was the best decision for Amy. Hearing “experts” predict a life of misery for her because her parents broke up however worries me – a lot!
Are you a single mum or dad? What do you struggle with on a day to day basis as a single parent? What are your worries?