There’s nothing easy about being a parent. All the difficulties and insecurities get amplified when you’re a single parent, and the burdens that should fall on two are instead placed on you as a sole individual. So if you’re looking for inspiration or reassurance, here are 5 single mums, who have shared their stories with us:
Renee Catt, founder of Divorce Go To Girl
“I am a single mother to two amazing kids, due to marital status, but not a single mother because the kids don’t have a father - just to be clear! I have a great story about reinventing myself after my divorce and now coach women through it. I went from travel agent to divorce expert.
There have been challenges I have faced while running a business and having kids as a solo parent. There have been challenges about finding time for myself, budgeting and financial stress. The kids’ father has them 50/50 but does not pay me any money.
However, I knew that there is only ever one person I can rely on to support me and the kids, and that is me, that is why I have changed my career so that I can support myself and the kids. Which is why I studied to be a qualified coach and now mediator.”
To find out more from Renee, check out her other website, Separation Success, as well, and her Facebook page! Also, if you are currently struggling financially, check out some budgeting tipsit to keep you on track!
Julia Hasche, founder of Single Mother Survival Guide
“I am a full time single mum to my four year old daughter. I was certain that I didn’t want my baby to be raised in an unhealthy and toxic relationship. I didn’t want my baby to grow up thinking that normal behaviour in a relationship was either screaming at each other or completely ignoring each other.
It took me a long time to recover, but it’s now been over four years and I am happier and more fulfilled and empowered than I have ever been in my life. The first thing that helped me was understanding that I had to go through the grief cycle. I also treated myself with kindness and gentleness and tried not to overthink and analyse my past.
I often hear single mother say that there is nothing good about being a single mother but in actual fact there are LOADS of positives: having occasional child free days or weeks, getting alone time at night, becoming more independent and resourceful, having less housework to do, the emotional strength gained, finding our identity again, making new friends, being able to parent the way we want to and the bond we all have with our children is pretty special.”
Joanna, founder of A Story For Her
“I am a single mother of 2 and for me, the biggest challenge was the stigma of how society perceives single mothers, which makes life even more challenging than it is. I slowly overcame this, first by being honest with myself, and then slowly beginning to have friends that like me for who I am and not my background, which then helped me to realise that many times it is our own minds that limit us. This is how I have overcome my challenges.
I have now set up a website called A Story For Her, to gather real life stories and struggles of single mothers. They heal and their stories can let other single mothers who are scared or feeling lonely, find comfort and inspiration through them.”
For more information, check out the site’s Facebook page as well!
“My son is now 15 years old, a very loving and beautiful young man. I spent the first half of his life in a lot of stress and overwhelmed with strong images about how I would be the perfect mother to him, yet all that resulted in was more stress about whether I was ever going to be good enough. I was constantly overcompensating for the fact that his father was not consistently around and was not dependable and responsible. This was exhausting, despite me thinking I was looking after myself being a health and wellbeing practitioner who was running a well established women’s health clinic in Melbourne.
When he was around 7-8 years old, things started to shift quite significantly. I had the most amazing support from a number of well-being practitioners that were actually living what they were saying. I was hugely inspired and began a relationship with myself that today is very treasured because of what this has produced in the way I feel in myself, in my relationship with my son and with others as well as the way that I now work.
Mothers/Women already think they need to be everything for everyone, so for a single mother this can often go to a whole other level of compromise. Really being there for myself as a woman first and NOT comprimising me, has meant I can be there in so many more ways for others, including my son.”
To find out more, check out Living Stillness on Facebook!
Michelle Smith, Start Up Mum
“I’m a solo mum. My daughter was only 6 months old when I finally made the decision to leave an abusive relationship. I had no job as I had been in the process of launching my own business as well as running a business for my ex. I was so worn down from the years of emotional and mental abuse that I felt worthless and incapable of ever achieving anything. Here I was a new mum, juggling a baby, trying to find a job or get my business happening, dealing with debt collectors calling 7 days a week with $50 left in the bank… I was at my lowest point and I wished I could end my life.
I decided to focus on the positive, starting by listening to the secret over and over again at night when my daughter went to bed and I was working on my businesses. Suddenly things turned around … It’s now 4 years later, I run several businesses including a community of mums who I want to help and inspire to run their own businesses.
This shift really took place through the support of the ancient philosophy and art of healing delivered by Esoteric Women’s Health. Without this practical support to build a relationship with myself and my body, I would still be an anxious, stressed out mess today.
This wasn’t the life I had planned, I never imagined I would have been through what I have. This solo mum gig is 24x7. Some days I think it’s the most challenging thing I have ever done and most days I think I am the luckiest person in the world watching and learning from this beautiful little girl.”
There’s nothing easy about being a single mum! You want to make sure you are well equipped (both materially and emotionally) for the daunting tasks ahead. Buy a good quality nursing chair, for all those precious moments spent with your newborn child, whether you are in a stable relationship or going it alone. No matter what, never forget to have fun during the parenting process because they just grow up so fast! Swings are great fun for children, and so easy to install in your backyard. So good luck and hopefully you were inspired by these 5 awesome mummies.