“Single Mom” Vocabulary: Harmful, Helpful Or Just Fact?

I started this blog with every intention on “owning” my single motherhood. I found it difficult (and still find it difficult) to label myself as a single mother because of all the social stigmas that say single mothers are women with the following attributes (some of which are based on credible and non-credible statistics, studies or outdated, but long-held beliefs):

  • Divorced (because they couldn’t keep a man), single mother-by-choice (because they couldn’t find a man during their fertile years) or unmarried/never married (because they were poor decision makers or couldn’t get the father to marry them).
  • Dependent on child support with other forms of government assistance.
  • Dependent on welfare and/or other forms of government assistance.
  • Lower socioeconomic status.
  • Uneducated, with the highest education level as some high school, a high school diploma, GED or some college credit.
  • At risk for chronic illnesses and diseases later in life.
  • Poor judge of character and poor decision makers.
  • Sufferers of mental illnesses, drug addictions or relationship addictions.
  • Chronically exhausted and prone to drama and instability.
  • Viewed as less desirable to date.
  • Other character flaws that have led to their current circumstances.
  • Contributors of the breakdown in traditional family values.
MTV's 16 & Pregnant Show- Jenelle

MTV’s 16 & Pregnant Show- Jenelle

If you Google “single mother” and click on the news element, some of the headlines look like:

  1. Single Mothers at Risk for Poorer Health Later in Life
  2. After East Village Fire, Internet Helps Single Mom Of 3 Who Lost Everything
  3. 7 Invaluable Love Lessons From Single Moms
  4. Single Mother Who Worked For Brink’s Says She Was Fired for Participating in ‘Fight for 15′ Protests
  5. Terminally Ill Single Mother From Santa Clarita Sues for Right to Die in California
  6. Single Motherhood, in Decline Over All, Rises for Women 35 and Older

I noticed a few trends:

1.) The distinction of “single mom” headlines versus the “mom” without marital status in the headlines were meant to elicit sympathy, empathy, pity, a call to action or a similar emotion.

2.) Personal stories/anecdotes of single mother’s in the news had a overcoming adversity, positive, strength-building or character-building tone.

3.) Personal stories/anecdotes of single mothers who opted to parent by choice were older, highly educated and of higher socioeconomic class and the tone was more neutral or positive than articles of single mothers by circumstance.

4.) Studies on single mothers had a subtle, negative tone that seem to reinforce social stigma. Authors make assumptions in the first article: “Single motherhood is associated with poverty in most societies, but more so in the USA than in Europe,” the authors explain. “This may lead to different mechanisms of selection into lone motherhood between countries. Particularly in Southern European countries, strong social and family networks may offset some negative effects of single motherhood.”

So here’s my conflict: Should we be talking about “motherhood” or “parenting” rather than “single motherhood”? There are obvious differences from a married mother and a single mother, but when it comes to the basic foundations of child rearing and parenting, why do we need to assign marital status?

Playing the devil’s advocate: Is it still relevant to use the term “single mother” so that we can connect with other like-minded individuals with similar experiences?

I’m not suggesting that one term is better than the others, but rather hoping other bloggers have some insights to the question:

“Single Mom” Vocabulary: Harmful, Helpful Or Just Fact?

Drink That Cool-Aid Baby! Outcome Independence Last Word

I believe that if you can’t take your own advice, better that you don’t give any at all. If your curious as to what outcome independence is, you can back-track here.

So without further adieu, here’s the cool-aid (I’m the blue bubble):

Eric OK1Eric OK 2

Before you cry foul over my “game” playing, I did make plans for dinner with a friend of mine on Thursday. Although he intimated that he was too busy to make concrete plans, he must have forgotten that I can see when he checks out my online dating profile- which he proceeded to do every morning for three days straight.

Dating Troll or Dating Clueless? You decide.

My 5 WTF – FML Moments Of This Week (And It’s Only Tuesday)…

1. I wake up to find that my 20 quick-matches contain three ex-boyfriends (I wish I was making this up).

2. My break up with Andrew’s daycare ends with his sitter putting his stuff in a bag and leaving it outside for me to pick it up.

3. My new daycare relationship begins with a $280 advance + purchasing new supplies.

4. What I think is 20 minutes of Andrew “playing quietly” is actually him pulling an entire jumbo pack of baby wipes and scattering them in his room.

5. I realize that this time, last week I a.) had stable child care; b.) a boyfriend; c.) was rocking my job; d.) had a massage planned; e.) had an awesome birthday dinner planned. None of these things worked out.

Daycare Drama: Part Deux

I pulled up to my daycare provider’s home thinking I could go to work today since I didn’t receive a cancellation text this weekend.

WRONG.

Daycare is closed according to my provider’s husband. She’s still in the hospital and although I can sympathize as a human being, I can’t help but be PISSED that I got ready for work and then had to call out unexpectedly. I hope I still have a job after this mess clears.

When I was ever in the hospital for anything and everything serious, I made sure my clients knew. It’s just called professionalism. In fact, if I were on my death bed, I’d still call my clients.

In the spirit of complaints accompanied by action, I am calling around to other day cares. This shit ends here.

Thank You For Picking Up The Slack- But I Still Can’t Stand You

Daycare drama again. Andrew had a slight fever and my sitter called for me to get off work and pick him up. Ahhhh the plights of the single working momma.

I couldn’t possibly leave my meeting that exact second, so I emailed my ex’s mother. My ex picked up Andrew within the hour.

For the first time in over a year, I am so GRATEFUL for his help.

Thank you, seriously.

zazzle.com

zazzle.com

And I still can’t stand looking at your face :-).

P.S. Andrew’s “fever” temperature was completely normal when he got home.

#daycare, #rip-off, #insearchofnewdaycare

Single Dad Uses His Car To Advertise For A Girlfriend- Cute Or Creepy?

From Yahoo:

A single father who has had no luck with online dating is taking a new approach: posting a personal ad on the side of his pick-up truck.

Robin Thomas, a father of three in Arkansas, has been spotted driving around town with a sign on this car door that reads: “Looking for a date? Would you date a single father?” The sign lists a phone number and only one requirement: “Ages 21 & Up.”

single dad2So- cute or creepy?

Mumz The Word Nominated For The Liebster Award!

Thank you Sadity Hoodlum!  I’m honored! Her blog is about her journey through the great quarter-life crisis as she attempts to navigate relationships, work culture, and adult-hood and with plenty of laughs in-between.

This award is meant for obscure blogs and the little people.

I know must nominate 11 more new and obscure blogs and use the logo above while completing all the task below.

Complete rules are as follows:

  • Link back to the person who nominated you.
  • Give 11 random facts about yourself.
  • Answer 11 questions from your nominator.
  • Nominate 11 new and obscure bloggers.
  • Come up with 11 questions for them to answer.
  • Inform your nominees.

liebster-award-logo

Random facts:

1.  What was the reason you started blogging?

  • It was first a cathartic endeavor, however, I love to write fiction and short stories so blogging feels natural to me.

2.  Soda or pop?

  • Soda

4.  If you could be in a relationship with any celebrity, who would it be?

  • Clive Owen. I love that British accent!

5.  What is your favorite curse word?

  • Jackass is my favorite, however I say f*ck more often.

6.  What was the last dream you remember?

  • I was screwing my ex. It was hate sex. Still pretty good and I still hate him.

7.  Do you know what water ice is?

  • Nope- ice water, yes.

8.  Have you ever been in a fist fight? If so, what was it over?

  • Never. I’m afraid of jail!

9.  Would you ever consider writing as a career?

  • I consider this EVERY DAY. In a way, I guess I do write as a career.

10. What role do you play in your friendships (i.e. the fun one, sensible, crazy)?

  • Sensible and logical almost always. I’m Miranda from Sex and the City.

11.  Have you ever got someone’s name tatted so they know its real?

  • No tats to speak of. I hate needles.

I nominate the following:

1.) https://5kidsandafarm.wordpress.com/

2.) https://tinderfishing.wordpress.com/

3.) http://soulomama.com/

4.) https://iamsabnificant.wordpress.com/

5.) https://barbarahortonfineart.wordpress.com/

6.) https://figuringitoutmommy.wordpress.com/

7.) https://dryolives.wordpress.com/

8.) https://blogcreatifa.wordpress.com/

9.) https://ariaspkaitysp.wordpress.com/

10.) https://anewfreelife.wordpress.com/

11.) https://turtlebutt17.wordpress.com/

Nominee’s need to answer these questions:

1. What equipment/class do you do first at the gym?

2. What’s your number one pet peeve?

3. Coffee or tea?

4. What’s the one beauty product you would take with you to prison?

5. How often do you cry?

6. How many piercings do you have?

7. How many tattoos do you have?

8. What is better: Girls or Sex and the City?

9. What motivates you to blog?

10. If you could change your first name, what would you call yourself?

11. Beach bunny or snow bunny?

Thanks all!

 

On Being a Single Mom

A wonderfully real letter about being a single parent!

5kidsandafarm

Today I feel like I need to focus on the intricacies of being a single mom. I am a single mom of 5. Whether your’e a single mom of 4, single mom of 3, single mom of 2, single mom of 1, or single mom of some other number not listed here… I can relate to just about every emotion you’re feeling.

Before I was divorced, my husband and I were separated for 3 years. THREE YEARS! Crazy, right. I kept hoping and praying things would come back together for us. I prayed, I cried, I went to marriage counseling (alone), I did everything I could do. It was all an illusion. When I finally filed for divorce, he drug his feet to make it even more difficult. He wanted me to be miserable. He wanted me to stay in the marriage and be miserable, even though he wanted other…

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Out And About With The Hot Hipster Circa 1997

I was fifteen minutes late. The Uber driver was creeping on back roads at 10 miles per hour. The Hipster was waiting outside of the bar in his parking space. I had waited all week to wear my cute new mid-drift shirt with a long, body-hugging skirt and laced-up black pumps.

He saw me and walked across the highway wearing a dress jacket, T-shirt, thick black framed glasses and a scarf with yesterday’s gruff. He was the perfect display of San- Fran hippie and I loved his style.

He greeted me pleasantly with a hug and a quick “Nice to meet you.”

“Have you been waiting long?” I asked. I hate keeping people waiting.

“Only since 4:00 p.m.,” he joked. “I like to get a head start.”

We found a place at the bar and immediately I was struck by how gorgeous he was. His pictures definitely didn’t do him justice.

“So did I catfish you?” I asked. Our text messages that week were about his catfish experiences and since it’s hard to find me online, he was worried about a repeat.

“No,” he said. “You are absolutely stunning.”

I liked him instantly.

I was besotted by his intensely passionate energy. He was a smooth talker for sure, but not in a creepy, player kind of way. His eyes were authentic. His hand movements and gestures were excited.

We drank at the bar until I spied an open table and he pounced on it. To be honest, I wanted to have some space between us so he wouldn’t keep touching my leg- too intimate and sexual for a first meeting.

I always like to swap stories about online dating horrors- they’re always good ice breakers. He regaled me in his recent catfish story about a date with a women who was ten years older than her profile stated and with an ass the size of a “table.”

The Hipster kept asking me “what’s my story?” meaning he wanted the details of my ex-fiancee and so called “baby daddy.” I wasn’t too keen on getting into the particulars- it sounds crazy when I tell it aloud and it’s not really first date material. He backed off but told me he was divorced two years, co-parents well with his ex and is a very hands-on dad. He owns a catering company that allows him to work the hours he wants and spend ample time with his kid. I found it very refreshing. He’s also somewhat of a relator maverick, working his way to getting his real estate license and dabbling in selling property.

However, there were some potential red flags:

  • He lives with a female roommate in a six bedroom home who once tried to date him (He swore he never slept with her, however I’m not so sure…)
  • He seems to have few boundaries with his ex (they’re best friends…could she be the jealous type? We’ll see).
  • He is a bit materialistic. He kept talking about his passion to manifest wealth and interest in personal style and having nice things. I’m not really of that mindset. I think modesty and balance is best.
  • He’s somewhat of a cross between conservative and libertarian. I’m a moderate liberal, so we will probably disagree about most things political.
  • He was exceptionally forthcoming about his manic-depressive traits. My ex is borderline, possibly anti-social and it was hell, so I date The Hipster with hesitation.

The night ended with him driving me home. I wouldn’t let him come up because I knew we might sleep together and that’s really not in my best interest right now. I’m not looking to hit-it-and-quit-it at this juncture in my life. But we did sit in his car for an hour just kissing, which was a nice departure for me because I’m not much of a make-out chick. He was an EXCELLENT kisser.

We have plans for lunch later this week since I have no free time for the ten days. Updates to come…