Single parenting is a whole new level of taking care of your young ones and yourself. It’s something you probably didn’t expect, something that you’ll have to learn how to do with every day that comes. Single parenting is hard, whether you’ve got there by divorce, the death of your partner, or you simply never married. Each of these has unique problems and challenges, but one thing is for sure – you’ll have to learn how to take care of your family as there’s no one to help you out. This is a survival guide for newly single parents. It will help you become more prepared for what’s coming but also take a more positive attitude toward life as a single parent.
Let you process everything
All newly single parents deal with a rollercoaster of emotion due to the sudden change or loss of a loved one. This is the time many of them try to ignore their feelings because of the kids. It’s not a wise thing to do, as suppressing your feelings can lead to bigger mental problems in the future. Processing these events takes time, and you should let it happen. There’s a lot on your plate so it’s okay to feel sad, need to talk to someone or cry it out. It will help you begin the process of healing and the ability to start a new chapter in life.
Don’t compare yourself to others
Nowadays, social media has made it easy to believe that others have more than you do. They are richer, better-looking, and have the most perfect families. However, this is often far away from the truth, so you should avoid comparing yourself to others. Becoming a single parent is tough, so don’t expect to have everything sorted out at once. Comparing yourself to people who are seemingly in a similar situation is not the way to go. Everyone lives in unique circumstances, and different factors affect their lives. Focus on your family and the best ways to start feeling good again.
It’s okay to get help
Single parenting doesn’t mean you should do everything on your own. Even though you want to feel like a superhero for your kids, it’s okay to get help whenever possible. Learn how to accept when someone offers to help you out and ask friends or family for help when necessary. You don’t need to do absolutely everything on your own, so try to be easy on yourself.
Remember: single parents very often lead to forgetting about friends due to a lack of time and energy. Try to avoid this, as friendships are important for our mental health and well-being. Keep your friendships so you can have people to have fun with, ask for help, and share both great and bad moments in life. Even though you sometimes like to be alone, this is not the time to alienate from all the dear people in your life. Actually, now is the time to expand your social circle. Meeting new people leads to new opportunities – social, career-related, and even romantic.
Take care of yourself
Surely, your kids are the top priority in your life, whether you’re not a single parent or not. However, if you forget to take care of yourself, you won’t have the patience and energy that it takes to bring up the kids. Find the time to focus on yourself, between all the meal preps, finances, laundry, and school drop-offs. Ask someone to take care of the kids while you get a massage, do yoga, or go to the hairdresser. Do things that will help you regain your confidence and take care of your health, so you can take care of others.
Focus on time management
Being a single parent, you’ll often find time your biggest enemy. There never seems to be enough to balance work, childcare, household chores, and any semblance of a personal life. The key to overcoming this is effective time management. Prioritize tasks that need to be done immediately and learn to delegate when possible. Utilize tools such as planners and digital calendars to manage your daily schedules. Time-saving hacks like meal planning, online grocery shopping, or using a laundry service can free up precious moments for you and your kids. Remember, every minute you save on chores is a minute you can spend on self-care or with your children. It’s also crucial to instill good time management habits in your kids, teaching them responsibility while easing some of your burdens.
Develop emotional resilience
Undeniably, the journey of single parenting is laden with emotional ups and downs. It’s essential to cultivate emotional resilience, not only for yourself but also for the sake of your children. Emotional resilience is the ability to bounce back from stressful or difficult situations. It can be developed through mindfulness, positive thinking, maintaining a support network, and pursuing hobbies that help you unwind and refocus. As a single parent, you’re your children’s primary emotional role model, so demonstrating resilience can help them develop this crucial skill. Communicate openly with your children about your feelings and theirs, showing them that it’s normal to have emotional reactions but crucial to navigate through them. Facing emotional challenges head-on can strengthen your family’s bond and help you both grow.
Be optimistic about the finances
Surely, a joint budget feels much easier and safer, but it is what it is. You’re on your own now, so you need to reorganize your finances and start making plans for the future. Revise your earnings and expenses in detail, so you can plan future costs. If this is too complicated for you, ask a friend or a family member who is financially savvy to help you out. The bottom line is – you shouldn’t worry and panic, but be realistic and practical. There are many ways to save money, so a little reorganization and money awareness will do the work.
Get in touch with fellow single parents
The number of single parents is huge. That’s why you should become more social and meet some of them. Talking to someone who understands can lead to amazing friendships and even romantic relationships. Playdates, casual chats, joint outings – there are many reasons you should interact with people who are in a similar stage in life. Swapping stories and sharing advice is crucial in these moments, as it gives you the right perspective on the situation you’re in.
Move preparations for newly single parents
Relocation to a new address is common for many newly single parents. Relocations can get stressful even when you don’t have a family to support you. A detailed organization is necessary when planning such a change. When moving as a single parent, the first thing is to start on time and make sure you write down everything you need to do. You have a lot to do in this period, so creating a moving checklist is wise.
Next, you shouldn’t worry about the safety of your move. For that reason, carefully researching trustworthy moving teams is one of the priority tasks. Make sure you hire a company that has good reviews, affordable pricing, and a friendly approach to its clients. You need a team you can rely on, so it’s important to take this step seriously.
Finally, don’t forget to include your kids in the process. If they are old enough, they can help you declutter and pack for the move. Kids’ feelings shouldn’t be underestimated, too. Talk frankly to them about what’s happening, answer their questions, and help them accept the changes.
The beginning of this life chapter can be quite a shock for newly single parents. However, it’s not something you can’t overcome. You just need to believe in yourself and stay positive about the new life chapter that’s coming your way.