So grab a coffee, cuddle up on the couch with your favourite blankey, and hear what my mommy has to say!
What do you think is unique about the relationship that you have with your daughter? Our bond is very strong. Probably stronger than if we lived in a traditional family. I am her mother, sister, and friend.
Do you think that a single parent can provide all the physical, emotional, and spiritual
needs of a child? I would say yes and no. Yes, because I gave all I had emotionally, physically and spiritually to her. No, because as I watched my daughter grow, I could see that no matter how much I did, how much I gave, there always seemed to be something missing in her. Nothing I did could erase the pain of not having a father.
If no, what did you do to ensure all of your daughter’s needs were met? It's hard. I had a daughter by myself, and I gave everything that I had. But, in the end, I don't know that I could have done to fill the void that was so obvious.
God intended a husband and a wife to raise a child together. That is why you can’t just have a child on your own (biologically speaking). There are things that you can’t get from a mother that you can get from a father. I think that it’s good that I was a single mother to a girl, because it made things easier in a lot of ways. At the same time, I think a lot of girls get their self-esteem from the attention that they receive from their father. It’s hard when you don’t have a father-figure, or a man in your life to teach you about how a man should treat you.
If you had a second chance to raise your daughter, what would you have done differently? In my situation, I worked weekends, and sometimes would not get home until 6 or 7 at night. I did that because my job was secure and I had a reliable income. Thinking back, it may have been better to sacrifice more financially so that I could have been at home more.
How did married couples treat you differently as a single mother? You're not really included very much. From what I could tell, some husbands feel threatened because you're an independent woman, and some women feel threatened because you're single.
Did a married couple ever befriend you? How were they different than others? Yes, there was one couple that included me in their lives a lot. They invited me over to their home, especially on holiday's they always thought of me and my daughter.
Do you think your daughter felt alienated from other “nuclear” families? Was she invited to parties and included like the rest of the children? I can't think of any time that she wasn't included, but whether she felt alienated in any way, I can't say.
What was your greatest sacrifice in raising a child on your own? Oh..lots of things. When you want to give your child all of things necessary in life, it has to come from somewhere. There were not extras like vacations, fancy clothes or new cars. You live mostly with what you need. I also didn't have much time for myself, because my daughter didn't visit her father on weekends.
What advice would you give to a single mother currently raising young children? At the time that I was a single mother, I couldn't find many support groups. But, I would tell single moms to try and find some support groups. I remember one time I found a support group in the area, and it was only for single moms who are teenagers. When I had my daughter I was 30-years-old, and there just wasn't anything for women my age raising a baby. It's also important to always make time for yourself.
What would you like to tell a married couple that are seeking to become involved in the life of single-parent families? If you have a neighbour that's a single mom, or a brother or a sister that is a single parent, it's important to include them as much as you can.
Thank you Mom, for sharing a little bit about what it was like raising a little girl by yourself! I know that you are an inspiration to many women, especially me!