How to be single parents guide

What's Covered

Being a single parent can be stressful and challenging. Imagine you are raising a child alone and giving all your support and their needs. If you are a single parent learn how to manage everything in able to raise them well and cope up with the challenge that life brings you in.

How can a single parent be happy?

Being happy is what parents needs and so the single parent. In order to take care of your children it is important that you are happy in able to have focus to provide for your children emotionally, financially and happiness that you can share to them because you have it well. In order to get happiness, you must give yourself some credits, think of what you wanted to do as long as you’re doing a good job as a single parent. Being happy even if you have a child is not a mistake to be guilty for, it is a need, a constant feeling that you have the very right to feel because having a child is already a happiness.

There are so many things that you can do to be a happily single parent. It is important that you take care of yourself, nurture yourself and get rest don’t be guilty for that, you need it anyways. If you already have peace in your mind you can set goals to yourself, to your children for the better future ahead, have some plans, dreams for yourself and for them, it can make you feel good thinking that you have plans even you are raising them alone. You may also find positivity through tough time; it will make you strong and motivated for the sake of your children.

Single Parent dealing with Anxiety

Parenthood is hard and for the single parent it is even harder. There are times that you are not yourself anymore because you want to give up to all the tough time that you’ve been through. [1]Having an anxiety single parent can cause a behavior to their children, which is the study is conducted at department of Behavioral sciences Fatima Jinnah Women University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan from February 2011 to July 2011, there are 63 parent participants and it was divided by 30 two-parents and 33 single parents it means that the single parents have a higher percentage when it comes for having an anxiety that can contribute to the behavior of their children.

Single parent needs help especially to the family, it is important to show them love, praise them that they are doing a great job despite of being a single parent at least they know they still worth and loved. For the single parents, in able to shift your anxiety into a good and productive self-version of you is have plans, create a routine starting from waking up with your children until evening when you sleep with them, enjoy being with them because they are the most precious to you. Don’t feel guilty for being the only parent they have because you know why? Because they are very thankful at least they have you.

Give yourself some time to breath, if you are very sad and mad in everything you can do some things like writing or reading about what you are experiencing if you are have an anxiety you can read a book about that I can recommend about single parents that is struggling with some biblical truths.

Make your weaknesses became your strength to be a better parent. Don’t feel guilty to ask for help if you need to because you are not alone, you may be a single parent but you are not alone. Lean to others if you feel heaviness and rise up again and always think that your children need you to be strong in able to contribute to them your positivity. You may have anxieties but always remember you always have a choice not to. Choose wisely.

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Tips for raising your child alone

We always love our children, but being a parent is hard and being a single parent is harder!  [2]Being a parent is a tough job, it is a happy and overwhelming but sometimes we do some mistakes and even some loving parents can do mistakes too because there’s no perfect parent. It is normal because children really take time and energy and it is even harder if you have some problems like being a single parent it takes a lot of patience and courage to survived every day for the children.

You may be alone raising them but you have a lot that you can do to fulfill some emptiness to your family. These are some of the tips that you may need about raising your child.

  1. Shower them with love, hugs and kisses

They maybe loss one individual but remember you’re still there to be the one that they need show them that they are loved and secured by your presence.

  • Routine

 Having a routine in taking care of your children is important especially for a single parent it can reduce some stress because everything has a plan and the household is running smoothly so you can have more time to have fun with children for a happy family of yours.

  • Discipline despite of being single parent

Always remember even if you’re giving them extra love because you are single parent do not neglect the discipline that you need to enlighten for them you still need to maintain the boundaries between the children and a parent.

  • Have fun with your support group together with the children

When it comes to your extended family, your mother, father, siblings, cousins, any other relatives even your friends can help you and your children cope up with your situation let them have some company with them in able to find some happiness, let them interact with others, go on holidays together spend some of your free time with them. Make sure that you are doing it in your child’s pace and not making them pressure to have fun, if they are not into having fun with others you can still enjoy with children with some board games at home to build some connection between parents and children, like this treasure hunt board games that you can try indoors or outdoors.

  • Educate Independency

 It is important also to teach your children to do things by themselves, stop being overprotective and being always there they need to learn to be independent sometime, try to keep a balance between being there for them and doing everything for them. Let them do some chores around the house, let them learn to do some of their assignments, projects, encourage independence because it is an advantage as a single parent having some extra helping hands within your child. It can be a very helpful strategy for raising a child until they grow up, they will get that character in able to be a better adult someday.

  • Feeling guilty

 If you will be financially stable don’t be guilty for not giving them some gifts, gifts are only temporary but saving money for your child’s future is better for them, this will be also a wonderful lesson that they can learn from you. There is time also that your children will be heard or see some negativity because you are a single parent, the best thing that you can do is to help them take the negativity away, children are so smart, talk with them and they will surely understand. Try also to take away your children to such person, scenarios that they will feel upset and it is important also not to say something bad about your ex because they are still their parent too. The most important is not thinking about perfection, you may not be a complete family but remember that every family existed is worthy.

  • Stay Focus

 Focus on your priorities yourself and your children, don’t base your families worth just because you are a single parent, take away the negativity that others say it will only lead you to stress don’t let yourself down it can’t help raising your child, be the best version example to your children of what you wanted them to be. Always remember that you are the only parent that they had, don’t lose focus be the strongest if possible, for them.

How to talk to your children about absence of another parent

As a single parent you need to expect that your children will ask question about your family, they will surely notice the difference of their family to the others. You have to be ready to ask their question and make sure to check their feelings. I recommend a book that you may read when you are dealing with your children when they ask about their loss father/mother.

I do have here some of the question that your children were going to ask and how you will answer to that.

Where is my mom/dad?

This is the common question that your children to ask. You need to think carefully on how you deliver to explain to them. Ask yourself first if what really happen to your ex, and what’s your kids age to able to deliver them correctly the details, is they mature enough or a little kid who is confuse about what is happening. But the most important thing is just telling them the truth nothing more nothing less.

Why is that my friends/classmate/playmate has a mom and a dad?

This question will definitely be asked by your children. When they already have friends, classmates they will see the difference why is that the other children have a two parent while e/she had one. You can say to your children that “Even if other children had two and you only had one it is alright, maybe your friend need two while you only need one, it doesn’t matter how many parents you have, it doesn’t define your importance.” Always remember that all children need to feel that they are equal, that they are not different just because they are raising by a single parent. They are supposed to feel loved in any circumstances.

[3] Children who are experiencing it will probably survive they may be confuse and angry for some reason but someday they will surely understand it and will accept what is going on. Just focus on your parenting, make every impossible be possible in raising your children even if you are alone, even if you don’t have the ability to do everything at least try, I know your children has eyes to see everything that you do for them. They may be a headache sometimes but I know next you will be proud of them because they are thriving perfectly because you shape them, so that they can live the life they deserve to be.

Where did Dad/Mom go?

It will probably be asked by your children once they knew that you are a single parent, they will be asked if what happened or where did their Dad/Mom go, they will be confuse somehow but you need to choose what will you say, whatever happened to your ex, you need to be careful for the reason that you will provide, and make sure that you’re not badmouthing your ex. They will surely understand it till they mature enough.

Do you think they love me?

It will be a moving question from your child. Always remember once you heard this the only answer is YES, it is very important that every child knows that their parents love them.

Are you going to leave soon?

It is a big NO. Of course, you will never leave.  You’re the only parent left you need to assure to your children that you will stay and never leave

Can I still have another one?

It is a very shocking question but it will possibly be asked, of course if they had just one parent, they will be asked if it’s possible to have another one, a new one. But for this situation you need to explain first to your children the pros and cons if they will have another parent, you can explain everything to explain them reality.    

How to be a strong single parent

Being strong for your children is required especially when you are a single parent, you know why? Because you are the source of their being strong as well. Sometimes being strong single parent is sacrificing their own needs to put to their children. Here are the following tips to be more successful in this pace and to get some idea to of habits that can help you.

Set Goals

It is important that you clear your mind first and on process of that you can decide for your own little family. As a single parent you need to have goals like where you would live with your children, is it the same house? Or to your parents so that you can have an extra hand in raising your children, or they will be attending the same school, did I still afford that school? Is my source of income will be enough? Did I need to have an extra work? or any life decision including your family. It needs to have a long-term plan for easier life ahead. Show to yourself that your strong enough to decide and be committed to it.

Be Precise

Being clever and resourceful is part of being a strong single-parent. You need to be accurate in expressing every detail of your life ahead with your children. The advantage of being a single parent in organizing is you do it alone, so you can be detailed having some calendars in events everyday with kids. If everything is fine it will be definitely easy to go around the house while working and taking care of your children. If you are still having a co-parenting relationship with your ex it is a good thing for the both of you. The calendar method can help the both of you to be stay up to date in some events and any circumstances.

Be Flexible

If you are a strong single parent it will surely test your being tough dealing with problems and trouble parenting your children. You always have to be ready and learn to handle your emotion for some complications that you can be possibly come up throughout parenting. Here’s a look to some examples of some challenges that you can possibly be involved with.

  1. Work- Life Challenge

 I know it will be hard and exhausting thinking that while taking care of your children you will be the provider for their needs. For that, don’t be hesitate to ask for help, organize your work between home like finding some flexible hours that is suitable for you or try working at home at least you have the opportunity to take care of them while working together with a good time management. Everything will be fine. Claimed it!

  • Guilt and Responsibility

For a single parent you will be surely experience it, there are times that you will blame yourself why is that your facing problems with your life, feeling guilty that you are not be able to give your children a complete family. You will be feeling ashamed sometimes to other people, to your extended family that you are raising your child alone because it is never be easy but in right mindset you can overcome it, forget about others to blabber about your life, don’t take people’s saying especially if it’s negative, focus only to the person who really care and of course listen to yourself, you’re the only one who can help yourself to choose who you will believe. You always know the truth and there’s nothing to be ashamed of.

There are times also that you feel that you are not enough to your children just because you are alone but remember that parenting is not a competition there’s no right and wrong raising them just be yourself and think about the things that your child will be safe and secure choose your own directions because you are their parents and there’s no parent that wants to neglect their children. You should limit your social media usage if you feel this way because you don’t have to compare your life with others. Learn to live this moment, be disappointed but learn to stand up. It can also help having time with your kids seeing them smile will take away all the negativity. Take time also for yourself have a “me time” to think clear and be connected to some single parent like you, talk to them and ask for some advices to their own experience and share your own too.

  • Emotionally Issues

Being a single parent will possibly lead you to stress, depressions and anxiety. You may feel that you forget about yourself, you don’t have time to go to salon, you haven’t watched your favorite tv series for a month and you feel that there’s a lot to catch up. But turn all your disappointments into positivity, use your situation to be happy like watching your favorite series or your children’s favorite to have a parent-children bonding is that amazing? You do what you wanted while having fun with your kids, do some outdoor games with them, for sure it is good because you’re having fun with your children and it will be a good exercise for your body and mind. Create a healthy and loving environment with them to lessen your loneliness. Always remember no one is perfect and the most important thing is your kids is doing great and happy. Your kid’s happiness is your happiness. Children can feel their parent energy, when you’re hurt and mad, they feel that, when you’re happy they feel that too. Take care of yourself so you can take care of them.

  • Financially problems

It is one of the main problems for a single parent, you may feel sad that you can’t provide all their needs. It’s stressing as well waiting for child support of your ex and you may feel that you need to do something to have an extra job to earn. The best advice for this is be thrifty actually it is a good thing, it will lower your financial stress and you can get out of debt. Be mindful of budgeting, organize and track your expenses.

Know when to be independent and ask for help

As a single parent probably, you are very independent because you do things on your own but as a single parent you need to know that sometimes you need help, someone to help you when you’re tired, or a group of people that will support you when your exhausted, a friend to be lean on when life turns you down. I know you may feel that you are alone, that no one understand you, that no one will see how you portray things. You may feel that no one is providing you support and encouragement when you needed but look around, you are not alone there’s a lot of people who love you, find people you know that can see the things the way you were. Don’t close your mind, think that there is someone out there to help and don’t hesitate to ask, open your heart, express what you feel to your trusted people I know there are always there just be open, there’s nothing to be ashamed for.

Have faith in yourself

It is one of the important things that you believe in yourself, you may be a single parent but you are enough. You already survive the past few years and months being alone so you may survive it for the next month and years too, why give up if you’re surviving, give yourself a credits or award like simple food that you really want because you’re doing a good job. It doesn’t matter if you celebrate small success or big success it’s the thought that you accomplishing something because you believe in yourself. It can help you to be more productive single parent in many ways like you can contribute it to your children’s learnings, it can help you to be more confident and see things in positive way because you have faith.

[4]Believing in yourself is the most important in life, it is worth repeating in yourself until it sinks in your unconvinced mind. If you have negative attitude like “I ‘am not worthy”, “I ‘am not successful”, then what ever you do and whatever you think it will be negative, but if you believe in yourself it will be bounce back to you as a positive result. Sometimes having a right mindset will turn things on how you wanted it to be.

Know that hardships are temporary

A strong single parent has a point of view. You need to know that what you are going through today is not always will be. Life has ups and downs it is like a wheel it goes round and round that sometimes you turn down and later on it’s your time to shine. Hardships is a good thing too it will be your life coach; experience is a good teacher to be better today the way you were yesterday. Don’t focus that you will fall but it is your queue to stand up and to not stay if it’s exhausting. If you set your mind that your struggles are temporary it will allow you to hold on and keep going. Begin with hope and hard work and everything will fall into right place.

Help others by sharing experience

As you learned to live the life you have now as a single parent, you know a lot of things you already had some strategies and plans on how you handled circumstances. You can share it to the other single parent that is struggling in raising their child alone, or struggling with their anxiety you can give some tips and someone that they can lean on, if your giving support to others you are helping them while being proud of yourself that after you’ve been through you are strong as ever now.

Final Thoughts

Parenting is not easy as we know. You’ll never know unless you experience it. It takes hardships and effort to survive, it takes a lot of patience, endurance and accepting to thrive. Giving your heart and soul to your children is necessary, now that you have children that you are raising alone then you will know that it is not just for you anymore, your children will be a big part of being you today, be the best for them. To the single parent that has been fighting every day to survive, don’t ever give up. This is your mission to be accomplish, a journey that has been given to you because you will learn from it to be a better individual and to be a good example to your children. Everything has a reason; you just need a right attitude and a good support system.


[1] Malik, Tamkeen Ashraf, and Nasira Irshad. “Parental depression, stress, anxiety and childhood behavior problems among single parents’ families.” Journal of Pakistan Psychiatric Society 9.1 (2012).

[2] Bethea, Lesa. “Tips for better parenting.” American Family Physician 59.6 (1999): 1591.

[3] Emery, Robert E. The truth about children and divorce: Dealing with the emotions so you and your children can thrive. Penguin, 2006.

[4] Wrenn, C. Gilbert. “The importance of believing in yourself or building a more positive self-image.” The School Counselor 27.3 (1980): 159-167.

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Author

Diana Lucas

Diana Lucas

Hi, Diana here. Welcome to my blog and hope you like my sharing. I am a mother of 2 boys, 3 years old and a 1 year old. I dedicate my career in child development research and I focus on parenting tips, positive parenting, educational toys for my babies. Your time here means a lot to me! Diana A. Lucas

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