Monday, 22 September 2014

SINGLE PARENTING.

The friendship between Hope and I was a peculiar one. It dated back to when I was in my penultimate class in high school. Although we were in different schools and I was a year younger (but a class ahead), the chord struck the day we first spoke at a debate competition.

We made sure to keep in touch regularly thanks to Facebook but at some point, I became engrossed with school work while in the university and I hardly had time for social media inter alia.

It was a rude shock when one day I was browsing through my news feed and I saw Hope cuddling an infant. One million thoughts started racing through my mind. I was mad at the fact that she had a kid and was probably married without my knowledge, I was amused that she was now a mother, I was confused as to who her spouse was and I admit, I was more confused/amused than mad.

Being the loud mouth that I am, I commented under the picture thus 'madam, weldone; you are now married without my knowledge. So much for friendship' and immediately, I got a message alert from her. On opening it, my greatest fear was confirmed. My dear Hope was the latest addition to the statistics of romance gone awry with a kid as the fallout of the unfortunate relationship.

By the time she started to narrate how she didn't know how she found herself in such because you see, my babe is very street wise than I am, I became sorry for her; sorry for the kid who might never know what it feels like to grow up in a family where the father and mother adores him, where each milestone growing up is captured alongside family moments, etc.

Much as we like to condemn single mothers (and fathers), I like to remind people who are quick to judge that it could have been any of us (so Hope darling and other sweethearts of mine known and unknown who were brought up in this environment or who are single parents, this article wasn't written to spite you).

My very effervescent friend is now a shadow of herself, she is frustrated. I know this because she takes it out on me.
I don't know how it feels like to be single and still act like a parent but I try to empathize always.

Here are some tips to cope as a single parent.

1. Build a strong family routine and stick to it. Allocate time for chores and time to spend as a family.

2. Establish ground rules since raising kids by yourself means you don't have anyone there to back you up if they won't play nicely.

3. Find opportunities everyday to praise good behaviours.

4. Set boundaries and limits. Children need to understand

5. Don't feel guilty. Don't blame yourself or spoil your child to try to make up for being a single parent.

6. Take care of yourself. Arrange time to do activities you enjoy alone or with close friends. Eat a healthy diet.

7. Lean on others. Join a support group for single parents, call on trusted loved ones, friends, etc for help.

8. Stay positive. Try to keep your sense of humour when dealing with everyday challenges.

9. Don't waste time being angry. Fine, the relationship didn't work out that's why  you are left to care for the infant alone. Being bitter is just a waste of time as this is unproductive.

10. Be financially stable. You need to save money for unexpected costs and eventualities.

In other news, my darling is back!!!!!!!!!!!! You have no idea how sad I've been this past days that one member of our family was down but thanks be to God, she is fit as fiddle now.

17 comments:

  1. **dancing** Yes I am back mehn!....hehe....Mami God will bless you abundantly....I mean the calls??...Phew!.....buh bout this post...mami....usually what I tell my buddies that are single moms is this, '#1 Rule - You MUST accept that you are a single mother'...cuz mami....some of them find it soooooo damn hard to accept that....I mean they have to deal with the present to hope for a better future...buh that reality is so scary for them......**sigh** It is what it is eh?...

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    1. you have no idea dearie, I mean am more than excited you are back.
      Back to the topic..... most single parents find it hard to move on probably because of bitterness but then I wouldn't know why they would rather live in memory lane than in the future and the present...but whichever way it is, it's important they face reality1

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  2. **exhaled** Single parenting is one hell of a stress, but thank You for the solutions provided in the post.
    Welcome back Tibby=========> all roads leads to #TTT





    ™Jeezuz_Jaireh ™

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  3. Nice one Bubba.. There is so much Stigma for Single parents, and it irritates me. The same society that encourages Sex without protection like its a rave, preaching Pills as against protection is still the same society that condemns single mums :(. It is truly sad, but I for one respect ladies who are single Mum's. The fact that they were able to deliver, stand by and take care of their kids regardless the hardship, gives me reasons to respect them a lot. So right now i stand in respect of them single Mums like Hope all over the world, I want them to understand that cause you were Broken, doesnt mean you are useless. Cheers Amaka of Life, you rock Bubba.

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    1. Well, it doesn't have to boil down to what the society encourages or does not encourage because in the end, the society will leave you to bear your cross alone.
      Did we leave out respecting single dads too? Amaka

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  4. I had a single mom friend who recently said to me that she feels like she has become "used goods" and no one would want her.
    It hurt me so much cz she is doing soo much to be a good parent to the baby while she has been battling with depression cz of all that people will say and have been saying.
    I will send this to her and I am sure it will help her.
    I have alot of respect for single mothers. Especially those left on their own to deal.

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    1. I meant I have....she is still very much my friend.

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    2. awwwwww you need to do more to boost her self esteem my dear. Being a single mum isn't a death sentence.
      Do send this to her, I hope it helps.

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  5. Well its so unfortunate what single parents go through. Worse still, if the single mom is still a teenager like my baby cousin. Sometimes I have to act like a dad to her kid because he calls me daddy (best feeling ever). But its not been easy for her. She dropped outa secondary school and she's not in da right frame of mind to return. I really do feel for single parents out there. God help em' all.






    :|

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    1. now isn't that sweet? I mean the being called daddy feeling.
      I think you should encourage her to go back to school afterall what is the point in crying over split milk? Amaka

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  6. well great post. they just have to try and continue living their life afterall being a single mother is not a disease.

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    1. Thanks dearie. If only they could see it this way too!! Amaka.

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  7. Isn't it weird that they are stigmatized for not aborting their kids.
    Cos if they had, nobody will know that they had sex.Unfortunately, that's the society we live in.
    How r u Amaka?Hope Sokoto isn't too hot.

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    1. Sokoto is hot ma'am!!!!!!! Amaka

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  8. Very nice post. Single mothers rock but the society makes it look bad. I wish some nigeria women will try single parenting rather than being stuck with abusive men

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    1. most times, culture plays a part too... you know the whole 'a man is the crown of a woman's head' bullshit they say. Amaka

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