It’s Not All Rainbows And Unicorns

Sometimes single parenting sucks. There, I said it. I’m not trying to delude anyone into thinking that this doesn’t come with some definite challenges, so I’m sharing the not so pleasant aspects.

You can’t just leave the kiddo with your spouse and run out to the store. They have to come with you EVERYWHERE until they’re old enough to stay home alone. Even if you’re lucky enough to have family or friends close by who are willing to watch them for a minute, it’s not as convenient as being able to say, “hon, I’m, gonna run to get some milk.” Easy to take for granted too.

The older they get, at least with my son, the less they enjoy ‘running errands.’ It becomes another exercise in patience and empathy on my part when all I really want to do is get stuff done and not have it be some huge exhausting life event.

Without a co-parent, you don’t have the built in support when things get difficult. Someone who is as invested in raising this little person will have a much different outlook than when you unload on your friends at the end of a particularly challenging day. You can’t ask a partner what they think or how they feel you could handle a particular hiccup with this child that they know equally well.

Then there is the play part of single parenting. Sounds like it should be fun and most of the time it is. However, especially if you only have one child, you are their playmate. I can’t tell him to go play with his siblings or his other parent, I’m it for choices. ALL THE TIME. I’ll tell you another secret. I loathe pretend play when I have to be involved. A lot of adults do and that could be a whole other story. If I want to foster it though, I must get in there. So I do.

This is not an exhaustive list by any means. I’m not looking to be a complainer, merely to shed some light on the trials associated with parenting on your own. Feel free to share yours too. I’d love to hear from others who can relate.

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10 thoughts on “It’s Not All Rainbows And Unicorns

  1. You’ve done it again. This is my life. This single parenting thing is tough. I can so relate to the part about being the playmate. It is exhausting. Many will tell you to teach them to entertain themselves. The thing is we have, and the child knows how to. Still, how many children do you know who wants to play by themselves all the time. Not a one I bet. So we must fill in the gaps…and it is tiring. Worth it, but tiring. Thanks for sharing this.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I knew others must feel this way so it seemed silly to only paint a rosy picture. Blogging is about living out loud a bit. This parenting is the toughest job but also the most rewarding. Helps when you know you’re not alone.

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  2. Thanks for being so honest. While it’s great perusing facebook and seeing parents post about how great their life as a parent is, it’s refreshing seeing the other side of it. I don’t have kids myself, but I’m the eldest of 4 and my closest sister and I were raised by a single mom before she remarried, so I’m not far removed from knowing how tough raising kids can be.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! My mom always told me I was brutally honest. She didn’t mean it as a compliment but I’ve always felt it serves me well. The truth is just the truth. Neither good nor bad, necessarily. Hang in there though, there’s plenty of good things about being a single parent. I’ll write those too one day!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Melissa
    I know this post was written last year but I’ve just stumbled across your blog after a very challenging day as a single unschooling Mum (one son also!). So great to find you and I look forward to reading your posts, and thank you for the honesty! Natalie

    Liked by 1 person

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