So I’m not a single mom, but I have friends who are single moms. And let me tell you, these women are strong, loving, independent go-getters who do their best juggling life’s messy moments WHILE sharing parenting duties with an ex…or two. Being a parent in a blended family is challenging in itself, but doing it solo deserves a whole different level of respect.
Here’s what I learned from these amazing ladies (btw, same kudos and respect applies to single dads in a similar situation, I just happen to know more single moms).
- You need a support system. The old saying “it takes a village to raise a child” is still true in modern times.
- You need time to yourself to recharge.
- Quit the self-blame game, it’s not healthy for you and it’s not a good example to your kids.
- Being the full-time parent will make you feel like the bad guy, because you do the most disciplining while the part-time parents gets to play with your kids every other weekend. Your kids may not appreciate your tough love now, but when they’re out of the house and on their own, guess who they’ll have more respect for and will come back to for advice.
- Trust yourself.
- Don’t let your verbally and emotionally abusive ex question your parenting or your self-worth.
- See a shrink (seriously, call your insurance company and find a family therapist who will help guide you through these challenges).
To all the single moms and single dads out there, including my stepsons’ mother, you got this! You are strong and appreciated for what you’re doing.