“I FEEL LIKE A SINGLE MOM TOO,” many of my married mom friends have said to me.
Here’s the thing…. They probably feel more like a single mom than I do!
Usually, the married mom friend will then say, “I don’t mean to take away from how you feel and how hard it is for YOU – the REAL single mom.”
To which I say, “Not at all, what you are going through does sound very hard.”
I signed up for this. I chose to have a baby and do it alone. Every day and night I know I am 100% going to be Spenser’s care giver on my own. I’m prepared for it and happy about it. I don’t feel lonely or alone.
Married people did not sign up for the being the only parent on the job; they expect their partner to help; how much help they expect varies, but they are not expecting to be alone, so when their partner works a lot, has a business trip, needs to rest when they get home, refuses to change diapers or get up in the night or whatever, it is EXTRA hard for the mom.
When people with partners say to me, “I feel like a single mom, just like you,” they mean it in a negative way… like, how awful to be doing this alone.
But you know, I actually think it’s HARDER FOR THEM. I really do. They have to take care of the child and then deal with (or not deal with) the relationship and the feelings of abandonment, disappointment or hurt. That’s hard.
When I was taking the first steps of becoming a single mom, I was terrified. I had fears of feeling alone and isolated. The first few months of my son’s life, I felt like it would be great to have a partner to bring me food, rub my back, run to the store but it was never the actual child care I wanted to give over.
Soon, I saw that I could do everything alone and I liked it.
I am still me, only fuller, richer and happier.
I am loving my life.
I imagine that the women with partners, who feel like single moms, are feeling alone; which they never expected to feel. It’s upsetting. It’s hurtful, even.
I think divorced moms find it extra hard because they entered into having children with a partner and are now in a position they didn’t plan on.
Look, this is my experience as a mom solo and it’s a positive one. I know you might be doubtful, but I wouldn’t change it. I love my independence, I love my 100% focus on my child, I love being able to date for fun and I love not having to deal with the interworkings of a relationship.
So if a married woman tells me she feels like a single mom, I know she is not enjoying the situation. It’s too bad that saying you feel like a single mom goes with a negative spin. But that’s not at all how I see it.
Like, right now, my son is sleeping, I have some dinner cooking and I’m writing. Then I’ll clean a little, take a shower and watch Nashville on my Tivo and go to sleep. Relaxing. No interruptions of interactions. I had a really busy social day and I’m quite happy to unwind alone.
Parenting is challenging for every family. I don’t think it’s harder for me because I’m solo.