I’ve been a single mom for four years (just after my daughter’s first birthday), and I can honestly say I love it. This may not be what you were expecting to hear, but it is my reality.
Now I’m not suggesting that being a single parent is easy. Let me be very clear, parenting alone is extremely hard. It’s all consuming. There is rarely a break. It requires massive amounts of patience, enormous thoughtfulness, and plentiful planning. Almost everything is more difficult when you are a single mom. Bottom line, single parenting is hard, thankless work.
That said I’ve come to love single motherhood (admittedly I’m a glass half-full kind of gal). The moments with my daughter replenish my patience. Her kisses restock my energy. Her hugs ease the ache in my heart. She has allowed me to find a strength that I didn’t know I possessed. And I know a lot of single moms who feel the same way.
For those about to get their feathers ruffled…I still believe having two good dedicated, unselfish parents who are considerate, thoughtful, and loving is ideal. However when that’s simply not an option parenting alone can be a refreshing oasis.
This post is all about showing the other side of single parenting, the uplifting glass-half-full kind of stuff. Here is my list of the best things about being a single mom, based on my unique experiences.
5. Not having to divide your time between your child and your partner (more time for your kids)
Instead of wasting my time fixing a broken relationship, I’m spending it nurturing my little explorer. Instead of cooking and cleaning for an ungrateful partner, I’m able to use that energy taking my little one to new and exciting places. Instead of stroking an insatiable ego, I’m reminding my daughter that she is amazing. To use a business reference, my return on this investment is substantially higher.
4. No co-parenting battles or disappointments
This one is for the full-time single moms (where the father is completely absent). Good parenting becomes very difficult when two people are constantly battling. If your partner doesn’t give as much as they take, disappointments become frequent.
I am thoughtful about how I parent and while it may be more work, in many ways it’s easier. It may be harder to do it alone, but at least I know what to expect.
3. Knowing everything that’s happening with the kid
A lot of my married mommy friends express frustration over the communication regarding the kids. I don’t think it’s anyone’s fault as much as it’s just that people are busy.
It’s hard to remember every little detail, and even more difficult to remember to tell your partner about those details.
Inevitably something or someone is left out. I work-at-home and spend all my time with my little one. I know my kid better than anyone. I know her moods and I’ve cataloged all her likes and dislikes. I am THE expert on my child, and I love it.
2. Do it your way
Many moms in troubled relationships find themselves constantly arguing with their partners over how to raise the kids. Big topics like religion to little ones like when to move them into their own room can start epic battles.
Parenting is give and take, and it takes a lot of solid communication. When rigid perceptions rein, children lose. This is true no matter the parenting set-up.
Instead of fighting with a partner I spend my time researching the best ways to nurture my daughter. Yes, it means there is a lot more pressure to get it right, but it also means I can implement what I believe is best.
1. All of your child’s love
This is the very best part of single motherhood. In a perfect world my daughter would have two loving, dedicated, and unselfish parents. My situation may not be perfect, but my daughter has one committed parent who would move heaven and earth to make her happy.
So yes I am making lemonade out of lemons on this one, but that doesn’t negate the awesomeness of having a kid adore you! I get loads of kisses, mountains of hugs, and snuggles for days.
It is a lovely reward for the very difficult work of raising a child completely alone, and I am happy to harvest the love.
The fine print
I’ve seen a lot of single moms terrified of the road ahead. I’ve seen a lot of single moms shamed into quiet submission. I’ve seen a lot of moms who think they aren’t allowed happiness. I’m here to say you may not be able to control the world around you, but you CAN control your perspective. This list is all about MY (positive) perspective.
This post is all about seeing single moms through a positive lens. Not as broken humans. Not as women to be pitied. But as strong badasses who take shitty situations and do our damnedest to raise healthy and happy kids.
Of course I know these perspectives don’t apply to all single moms, this list is reflective of my unique situation. But every single mom (and single dad) has something to add to this list. Her own own silver lining. Please share yours in the comments below.
Until next time beauties!