Episode Script Preview:
I came across a blog post the other day that brought up a term that I had never heard referenced before, Lone Parenting. The article, “I’m not a Single parent—I’m a Lone parent & it’s F*cking hard.” (Read here) really hit home for me. I was shocked, that I had never heard that term before. I think the problem is that we are so used to hearing the term Single Mom being a collective representation of all women who are raising their children more than 50% of the time. But what about the women who are raising their children 100%? What about those who are raising their children 100% with no child support payments coming in? What about those women who are raising their children 100% of the time, with no child support payments, and no family support system close by? After all, haven’t we been told a million times that it takes a village to raise a child?
What about those mothers who do not have a village? I am a lone mother. I do not have child support payments to help cover the needs of my child. I do not have a local family connection to help cover me when I have to be in two places at once. It is all me. School drop-offs and pickups? Me. Grocery shopping and the means to afford those groceries? Me. Sick child in need of a doctor’s appointment? Me. You get the idea.
Think about how many times as a lone parent, you have heard your single mother friends complain about their exes being late for a pickup or drop off, or being a few days late on child support payments. But you see the difference between lone parents and single parents, is that those pickups and drop-offs will still happen, the child support payments will still get deposited. There are no pick-ups, drop-offs, and child support payments for lone parents.
As I normally do, let me assure you that I am not trying to downplay the stress of single parenting. Raising a child is hard, raising a child more than 50% of the time with little assistance and help is hard. But, raising a child completely alone, is a whole new level of stress and exhaustion, most of that exhaustion comes in the form of chronic and emotional fatigue.
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