Growing up, I had a mum and a dad. That’s the norm right. A nuclear family. It is what everybody desired, admired and wanted. I had a great childhood, and looking back I was so lucky to have two parents. Even though it is not spoken about much, single parenting is very common. There are so many mums and dads out there, doing it by themselves. However there is such a negative stigma attached to being a single parent. I’m going to share my experience with you, because I want to normalise single motherhood.
So, like everybody else, I desired to have that mummy and daddy set up for my children. I got excited and looked forward to having so many different and new adventures with my children and their daddy. I longed for that close family bond for my children. I wanted them to grow up in a loving home, with a mummy and a daddy. This is what was drilled into me to be ‘the right way of doing things’. However, I soon learnt that a child can have a loving home with just one parent, and sometimes staying together can be more damaging for the children.
Shouting, arguing, swearing, tension, bitterness, bad atmospheres. No child wants to live with this.
I’m 25 years of age and I have two absolutely gorgeous little boys! Currently my eldest is 2 years old and my youngest is 5 months. As you’ve already worked out, I’m a single mummy. Yes, a very busy house for mummy indeed! I work in a nursery. The same nursery my children attend. I also have a sideline business where I sell Scentsy products. I split from my children’s father when I was four months pregnant with number 2. This was back in March 2020. So yes, lockdown was beginning. I left the home I shared with my children’s father, and temporarily moved back in with my mother. With my children of course. Is this what I had planned for myself? No. Is this the way I wanted things to work out? No. Was I sad? Yes. Disappointed? Yes. Embarrassed? Indeed.
Moving back in with my mother was hard. It felt like I had failed. It felt like I had been foolish. I believed people would be talking about me. That they would be laughing behind my back. But I couldn’t have been more wrong. I blamed myself. For picking the wrong ‘baby daddy’, for jumping in head first, for not making it work. I soon realised though, that none of this was my fault. Sometimes these things happen. Sometimes relationships don’t work out. Don’t beat yourself up about it. Just accept it, and move on.
Being a single mother is more normal than ever before.
I felt so much guilt. Mainly directed towards my children. What had I done? What would their life be like now? They are never going to experience that nuclear family setup. They won’t know what it’s like to have a mummy and a daddy together. They won’t get to do all these family adventures and milestones. Those lovely family pictures will not exist. They will have to have two homes. Would this affect them growing up? Will this affect their future relationships? No one could possibly tell. No one could predict this. It has happened. That’s just the way it is. All that your children need is your complete and utter care, love and attention. If you can give them this, and be the best parent you possibly can be, then this is all they need.
As mums, we put so much pressure on ourselves. We blame ourselves for everything. We compare ourselves and our parenting skills. It just comes naturally. We have so much guilt. We lose our temper, then feel bad for it. We would love to have some time to ourselves. Maybe a night off? This doesn’t make us bad mums. This doesn’t mean we don’t care. It simply means we are human. In order for our children to be ok, we must be ok too.
So all you solo mummy’s out there, your doing great and your not alone!