Saturday, December 3, 2011

Single Momma Woes

Single parenting is not easy. 

There is the  social stigma attached to being a failure in your marriage, for one.  All the stay-at-home moms stand there in the middle of the walk way at school chatting about recipes and cleaning secrets, while their husbands go to work and pay for the big houses and the big lips.  You know....from the lip injections, just in case you couldn't figure out the reference.  It was kind of random...and bitter.  And that's mostly just my own insecurity, I think...

There are  the my-child-is-driving-me-nuts-and-I-need-to-lock-myself-in-the-bathroom-so-I-don't-cause-him-physical-harm times when you just wish you could pawn him off on the husband for half an hour while you get your sanity back.  And then you look around and remember you're the only adult around and you have to suck it all up and deal with the situation like a...well, like an adult. 

There are times when your kids are sick and you're up with them all night long.  And then you go to work.  After being up all night. 

There is the constant struggle to do homework and read and learn valuable tools that are required for them to be contributing members of society.  They just don't get it when they're 7. 

There are bed times and schedules and 'where's your back pack?' and 'put your toys away' and then there is this....

"I'm not rude at daddy's house.  Cuz he's nice to me.  Cuz he plays hockey with me."

He saw the look of absolute horror on my face and quickly changed his tune..."uh, I mean...I don't know...I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry."

In that split second, I had to bite my tongue so I didn't give him the chance to live there permanently.  How does he know the most hurtful thing he could say at such a young age.  I'm the mean mom. 


Comparing me to that man in such a way just killed me.  Q brought home a journal from school that he writes in every day: Today we went to Daddy's friend L's house for American Thanksgiving dinner.  Today we went skating with Daddy and his friend E.  Yesterday, me and Daddy went to his friend S's house.  Are you fricking kidding me?  He's comparing me to the guy who is using him as a dating tool.  What kind of person uses his child to meet women?  What kind of person???  What is he teaching my child about relationships? 
But in Q's mind, I'm the irrational one for teaching him and reprimanding him when he's rude to an adult.  I'm the mean mom.  I'm the one to blame for all his issues.  Not his Dad.  No, his Dad is the fun one.  Give me a break.  But I have to bite my tongue about all of the lady friends because I don't want Q to feel like he can't share things with me.  I might be the "mean zone" but I want to be the "safe zone" too.  I don't want him to start hiding things or keeping secrets from me because he thinks it might upset me. 

Sometimes, I just pray for a big bus.  I'm so totally amazed that I found myself so attracted to this man that I was willing to procreate with him.  Don't get me wrong, I love my son.  Love him to pieces, but it's so important to me that I raise him to be a kind person.  It's so important to me that he grows up to be a strong man.  My biggest fear is that he'll grow up to be just like his father.    Then he goes and makes a comment like this and it's like my fear is coming to life. 

When you invest everything you have solely in your child (instead of equally in your marriage, your family, your child, your career) things like this get you down.  You realize that your biggest failure will be raising a child who doesn't become a mind healthy adult.  It's a scary thing, raising a child on your own. 

It's one little comment, that he's completely forgotten I'm sure.  Yet here I am dwelling on it, questioning my ability as a parent. 


  1. whoa there Single Mommy...

    One thing we learn as single parents is to not take things personally. Kids are kids and they say the strangest (and yes sometimes hurtful) things to those they care about the most.

    Time outs are the greatest tool both for Moms and Kidlets. There were times he went on a time-out because he did or said something inappropriate. And there were times that I put myself on a time-out so that I didn't do something inappropriate because I was disappointed or hurt or the odd time a bit angry. It's really interesting to watch their reaction when you put yourself on a time-out for doing or saying something wrong. And for them, two minutes of silence in the corner chair while they "think about what they just did" seemed like an eternity to them, but was such a gift and one of the strongest tools I came across - it really helped me keep my sanity. It was especially good when the time was up and I asked "and what did you learn". We could then "talk without emotion" and it was amazing how much healing and respect came from it to both of us.

    We can't make our kids be anyone. Our job is to teach them good behaviour vs bad behaviour, and right from wrong so that they can make informed choices when they get older and understand consequences. Maybe a few time-outs will help.

  2. Oh wise anonymous one thank you for your words. Sometimes you just need to hear someone say "oh that's normal". I just thought my kid would be the *one* who wouldn't say things like that. He is, after all, an angel...most of the time!!!

  3. They're all angels: "special gifts from above", just some times less angelic than others.