Single Mom, I know how it feels to desperately want your child’s father active in their lives. But believe me when I say you should be thankful for both the things you have, AND do not have. There is a blessing in it all.
The struggle of being a single mom is REAL! Believe me, I know. You often hear about the struggles Mommies face when the child’s father is not active in the child’s life. I can also empathize and literally feel the weight that raising a child alone can bring. This can be especially overwhelming with multiple children. Not only is the lack of support a physical strain, but even more of a mental and emotional strain. I know that there are so many others that can relate. The 2018 census shows that there are 16.4 million children currently living in single mother homes. And, 65% of black children live in a single parent home. Truth is, the single mom role is one of the most difficult, selfless, giving, and sacrificial roles known to man. But if I’m honest, I secretly love it.
Ok hear me out, I’m not saying that I do not want my son to have a relationship with his father, and I would never restrict that relationship or make it difficult. But secretly, I love receiving all the credit when someone says “he is such a respectful, loving, and smart young man”. I love that I am not required to share him with anyone. I also love making decisions based on my judgement and perspective and no one else’s, deciding what influences I want in his life, and becoming the woman that this circumstance has made me 12 years later.
Don’t get me wrong, I would have loved to raise my child with the same person I created him with. That was the intention, but that is not my story. I gave birth to my son at the age of 19. I was very young, irresponsible, and had no idea what I was getting myself into. Neither did his father. I was forced to grow up quickly. His father, not so much. I am not blaming him as a person, I am blaming the circumstance.
The circumstance resulted in me being a single mother for the first 7 years of my son’s life. Every decision that was made was completely my decision and everything fell on my shoulders. If I’m honest, initially, this was very difficult. I am naturally an indecisive person and the thought of making a life altering decision that could possibly change the course of my child’s life was terrifying. I wished I had someone to collaborate and communicate with because two minds are better than one, right? But because his father hadn’t fully matured at the time, I did not trust that his decisions were in the best interest of my child. I later became very comfortable with making decisions that I was confident in.
Now, I could not imagine being forced to consider someone else’s perspective when making a decision about my son, especially someone who I did not agree with their point of view. My son and his father have always had a good relationship. But, I would say they are more like friends than parent and child. His father doesn’t discipline, give advice, or make decisions. And I’m ok with that, it works for us.
Also, never have to share. I must admit I am a selfish Mommi. The thought of being forced to share by some court order or verbal agreement makes me anxious. I am able to have my child every birthday, Christmas, Thanksgiving, weekend, and summer break. When the other parent doesn’t request visitation, you can make visitation on your own terms. In most cases, I believe it is very important for children to have relationships with both of their parents. That is the case only when the relationships are healthy and safe for the child. And I am the Mommi that makes it as easy as possible, most times pushing the relationship. I genuinely feel that sometimes you have to force relationships when it doesn’t organically happen, in the best interest of the child. But, in my case, I get to do that on my own terms.
Sometimes you don’t want certain people having a predominate influence on your child. Being a single parent with an inactive secondary parent, you get to decide the people and environments that you want to have influence over your child. When we were younger, his father didn’t choose the best crowds to surround himself with. As the primary parent, I was able to make the decision to not have my son in an environment that I believed would have a negative impact. Let’s also think about the impact raising a child as a single parent can have. Children watch and emulate everything they see their parents doing. I love to see my child mirroring my independence, strength, unconditional love, and drive to make the best out of every situation.
If I were not placed in this situation to be the sole provider physically, emotionally, financially, etc. I wouldn’t be the woman that I am today. My drive to be successful is dependent upon my child. I wouldn’t have pushed for a Masters degree advancing my career and entrepreneurship if it wasn’t for being a single parent. I had to grow up, I had to grow up fast, and I am so grateful I did.
Being a single mom gave me the inspiration I needed to take control of my life and flourish in ways I never thought I could. Whenever I become discouraged, I look to my child and instantly become confident, because if you can succeed at motherhood… alone, you can accomplish anything. To see the fruits of my labor and beautiful, enchanting, magical fruit at that, is one of God’s greatest blessings in my life. I am overwhelmed with gratitude that God chose me to be the mother of this child.
Although single mommihood may initially feel like a burden or the residual effects of a failed relationship, there are so many blessings that can come from rising above the struggle and raising a phenomenal child. Even Janet Jackson said being a single mom at 52 is a blessing and motivates her to find inspiration and happiness in each day.
We are not all dealt the same cards, sometimes are cards are missing a king, but we have to play the cards we are dealt intentionally to the best of our abilities, even without a King, we can still win the game.
All the single Mommies, I want to know your thoughts. Is the Blessing greater than the struggle?
I also wrote a blog about single women raising men that I would love for you to check out.
Until Next Time,
P.S. you can follow me and my family on Instagram.