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Newest Member: Mlynm (61831)

User Topic: Best single parenting lessons
♂ 41801
Member # 41801
Content  Posted: 3:56 PM, May 19th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Itís been over half a year since I became a single parent and I canít help but reflect on some of the life lessons Iíve learned thus far. Iím sure there will be lots more ahead on the road, but for now I wanted to share these and listen to what others have learned:

1) Donít waste one single minute with your children! Like my wife, before dday, I was also taking my kids for granted. I just always assumed they would be there when I wanted to engage and quiet when I didnít. After dday I realized how fragile and precious time with my children is. All of sudden they arenít available to me all the time, meaning I maximize every single second I am with them. Not a minute has gone by during the last 6 months that I was not talking to them, reading to them, eating with them, playing with them, etc. I feel like a dad with a terminal illness and I canít waste any more time.

2) Get your sleep! I was a night owl before dday, sleeping odd hours, couldnít get up in the morning and letting all the work fall to my wife. Not possible any longer and since dday I have been in bed early at night and up at 630am. I heard a famous athlete talk about the critical nature of sleep and while parenting is not a professional sport, raising my three boys alone makes me think about that a lot! If I sleep I can do anything: Iím patience with them, I get ahead of their schoolwork, I plan fun activities, I read to them etc. If I donít sleep, the whole equation doesnít work.

3) Cook and then overcook! I had to learn how to cook which has become a great pleasure in my life but the key lesson for me is to overcook. Since Iím only with them half the time, I have to sort out what to do with myself for the other half the time. The solution? Leftovers! I overcook at all meals I make for them and stock up for when I am alone. This has proven a great solution for me eating healthier, staying out of restaurants and saving on the budget.

Other single parents, what are the best lessons youíve learned on the journey?

WH 41
BS 40
D-Day Oct 28th, 2013
Together 18 years
Three amazing boys 12, 9 & 6
Praying for hope daily

Posts: 260 | Registered: Dec 2013
♀ 42111
Member # 42111
Default  Posted: 4:20 PM, May 19th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

It's ok not to get it right all the time!

You don't have to be perfect. Maybe they watch too much TV sometimes, spend a bit too long on the tablet, maybe you shouted too much one particularly stressful morning. It's ok.

Everyone has bad days, don't give yourself a hard time for being VERY, VERY relieved when it's finally bedtime.

Madhatters - We have R'd.

Chin up. Unwavering. Fight. We can do this.

Posts: 1363 | Registered: Jan 2014 | From: UK
♀ 42868
Member # 42868
Default  Posted: 4:28 PM, May 19th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

It sounds like you are doing great!!! I have to say we go out to eat a lot more often now.

The struggle for me has been with punishment. I don't have stbx around for backup and I have to be the mean mom too much about homework and curfew.

I have a bit of the opposite with the time since my DD is 16. When she goes to her dad's for the weekend, I get to enjoy a little "me" time. Sometimes it is a little lonely but I try to stay positive and do new enjoyable activities or see friends.

Me: BS
Married almost 20 years
2 year EA and 1 month PA
D-Day: 01/14/14
Separated and divorcing

Posts: 92 | Registered: Mar 2014 | From: TX
♀ 31349
Member # 31349
Default  Posted: 4:29 PM, May 19th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Prayingforhope, I just wanted to say how very inspired I am by your attitude. This is a fantastic post for all parents to learn from.

Proud of you.

"Don't give up, the beginning is always the hardest." - Deeply Scared's mom

Posts: 29076 | Registered: Feb 2011 | From: California
♀ 33226
Member # 33226
Default  Posted: 4:35 PM, May 19th (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Remember that you and your kids are a family. A whole family. There's nothing "broken" about a single-parent family.

Learn to not only accept help, but ASK for it. This is a work in progress for me.

Teach your kids what it takes to run a house and a family, and set the expectation that they will contribute, whether through chores, clean up, shopping, cooking, yard work, etc. Involve them in age-appropriate ways. And make it fun - crank the tunes, laugh, be silly, and pull together to get it done.

You can call me NIK

And never grow a wishbone, daughter, where your backbone ought to be.
― Sarah McMane

Posts: 40250 | Registered: Aug 2011
Topic Posts: 5

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