The challenges of single parenting often leave us wondering...
What Just Happened, and, How am I Supposed to Do This?
So, this is how it really feels when it all hits the fan.
These are just a few of the questions asked by many parents who are suddenly thrust into the challenges of single parenting.
The truth is that it isn't easy. And, many of the people facing the challenges of single parenting have nothing in their background or personal experiences to guide them as they move forward into this new world.
It is easy and common to feel overwhelmed by this massive shock to the system. It is also easy, yet dangerous, to stay stuck in one place, paralyzed by fear.
Yet, for as much as the world has evolved, kids still need to have parents to raise them. Mother birds can push their babies out of the nest within days of hatching and rightfully assume that they'll be ready to fly. Human beings are decades in the making before they even graze adulthood.
When it is possible for both parents to raise their children in concert with one another that is obviously the easiest and best choice for everyone concerned.
Then again, if they got along that well they might have stayed married to one another. Add to that the shift in the balance of power and the change in the relationship dynamic, and it's no small wonder that every last ounce of energy and patience evaporates quickly.
There are a million ways that things can go wrong. Fortunately, there are some things to bear in mind to stack the deck more in your favor.
Look back on many of your life's other transitions for a moment. None of us was schooled and graduated from Life 101 or Parenting 101. However, every experience that we have in life presents us with the opportunity to learn something of value to carry forward and use in our lives.
People grow and evolve. Our parents raise us up to a point, and then it becomes a "do it yourself" job. We learn as we go. How huge of a change is it to go from being childless to becoming a single parent? Yet if you're reading this, it's probably safe to assume that you figured it out. And that happens by trial and error. Find and build a support system for yourself and your kids. Your friends, family and community are all great resources for help.
Keep your kids' feelings and best interests at the forefront of your mind and decision making process. Don't burden them with adult problems. They need not be collateral damage of a relationship that didn't work as planned. Be a parent, not their friend in order to allow them their youth and childhood despite the circumstances.
At the end of the day, there is no class or prescribed method of going it alone as a single parent. If you do find yourself in this unfamiliar territory, you can draw upon your life experiences to provide you with the wisdom and confidence to get the job done. In real life, sometimes the School of Hard Knocks provides the most useful experience of all.
Schedule a complimentary Discovery Session to outline some things that you can do right now to cope with the challenges of single parenting and make a positive difference in your life.