Common Struggles and Coping Strategies of Sudden Solo Parents

mom taking care of baby

Solo parenting is a situation that anyone would rarely choose to have. It’s usually the aftermath of an even darker circumstance – divorce, abandonment, or the illness or death of a spouse. If you think that going through any of those events requires a lot of strength from you, going about parenting on your own will demand more. If you’re a single parent, you’ll most likely run into these struggles. However, you can find ways to overcome these as well.

Financial Stability

This is on top of the list for many, especially those who have suddenly lost their spouse. When you’re going solo, you have the burden of raising your children alone, not only in an emotional way but also in a financial way. If you’re fortunate enough to have had a spouse who got insurance before dying or one who’s willing to support the kids even after your separation, then this won’t be much of a difficulty. However, many single parents like you will have to find ways to work it out. For example, if you still have to pay the mortgage, you can choose to refinance your home in Utah so that you’ll gain a lighter load.

Staying Optimistic

mom hugging her daughterTo feel or simply believe that everything is going to be all right can be difficult when you’re suddenly single with kids. Worrying is the usual human response when it comes to this kind of situation. You might start fretting even on petty snags such as a small mess or baby’s cry. The time it takes to cope may vary depending on the person. However, you can start doing so by doing some soul searching, undergoing counseling, having some family bonding, or committing to any activity that provides you with relaxation and calmness.

Self-care

Taking on almost all the responsibilities of parenthood by yourself can cause you to neglect to care for your own self. Since you assume the roles of both the father and mother, all your time is devoted to working as well as maintaining the house and looking after the kids. You might not notice until later that you’ve started looking more worn-out than you should be. Keep in mind that the toll the situation takes on you won’t just be on the outside but also on the inside. You need a healthy body to properly fulfill your role as a parent, so take some time to take care of yourself as well. Take breaks when you need to and make sure that you eat well.

Restoring or Building Relationships

After losing your spouse, you might have gone through wanting to isolate yourself from others and push people away. Whether it’s out of guilt, shame, fear, anger, or a combination of any of those emotions, isolating yourself leads to broken relationships. Building them can be a struggle. However, as long as you start interacting outside of your family a bit more, you’ll be able to do it.

The list above is only the most common of the many struggles of solo parents. Still, no matter what you’re going through and no matter how hard it gets, you have to get up and move forward. Support from your family, friends, and your community will be helpful. Engaging in constructive and relaxing activities once in a while will also prove useful. Opening your heart to a new romance later when you’re ready will also be great, but it’s optional since you have the love of your children.