The 1 Thing to Never Say to Your Child After Divorce

I learned something very important in court parenting class. Something I didn’t expect.

I was sitting in a large nondescript room that looked something like a school cafeteria or a VFW, about to listen to a court parenting class. They offered cheap snacks like peanuts and granola bars, along with water bottles. I grabbed some snacks and looked around. As I scanned the crowd I saw newly separated people with the mark of divorce on their faces. The exhaustion, fear and defeat showed on almost everyone. I had already been separated for 2 years at this point so it wasn’t new to me. Yet as “old” as it was to me, sitting in that class taught me a lot.

I learned a lot about what the court deals with in regards to children and divorce. I learned a lot about what the court expects from me and other divorced parents.

But the one thing that stuck with me was when the court social worker told us we should never call our “ex” our “ex” in front of our children or to other people we are speaking to in front of the kids.

“Ex has a bad connotation. Ex is something that is no longer part of you. Ex is the past. But to your kids, your “ex” is their father or mother. A good person. A part of them. Their present and future.”

Read More: The 1 Thing to Never Say to Your Child After Divorce

One Small Habit to Make,

Laura

How to make the most of a long weekend alone without the kids— Divorce Style

In all truth, ever since splitting from my former husband, the hardest times for me have been holidays…and summer weekends alone. It’s easy to understand why adjusting to sharing holidays has been hard. Thankfully, my ex and I split almost every single holiday day in half since we live close. But why have I found summer weekends alone to be hard in particular? Well, I suppose it’s one thing to be alone on a frigid cold winter night. Is everyone else going out and having a good time? Most likely not. Most likely they’re Netflixing and “chilling” or literally watching Netflix alone like any other single gal home at night on a Saturday in January. But in the summer there are a lot of family vacations, hot summer romances, trips away…and as a single person who hasn’t been too impressed yet with the dating pool, the nights I found myself struggling to find something to do felt pretty awkward and sad in the past. I was, in theory, supposed to have “fun” on my free nights and be out like everyone else, so why wasn’t I? I mean, I was having fun sometimes, but it was hard to find other single people ready to go out. It seemed like more of a chore to find something to do than I had expected, but most of my friends were home with their partners, like other married folks.

 

Read More: How to make the most of a long weekend alone without the kids— Divorce Style

Enjoy It,

Laura

 

 

Working Through Divorce

As a newly single mother living on one income, having a job is high on my priority list. I was working part-time when I was married, and once my husband and I separated I immediately had to go back to full-time work. Learning to navigate a new job and single motherhood while going through a divorce was tough. If you’re in or have ever been in this boat, you know what I mean.

So how can working moms get through divorce with their jobs intact? First things first: Make sure your kids are cared for. You can never have enough backup care, suggests psychologist Leah Klungness, Ph.D., co-author of The Complete Single Mother.

Read More: Working Through Divorce

It’s Tough,

Laura

12 Things You Need to Know Before Dating a Single Mom

Before you get involved with a new partner, as a single mom you wish there were a few things you could tell these potential paramours bluntly, although laying it all on the line might be a bit intimidating! If there were a guide to explaining to your love interests the things that they should know before dating you, a single mom, this one would be it!

We Aren’t Desperate For Your Approval and Attention

Yes, we would like love in our lives and it stinks that the father of our child or other coparent is not the big love we may have hoped for, but we aren’t desperately posting on Craigslist for some guy to save us. Sure, after some of our marriages and relationships have dissolved, we may be lonely and wanting sex and companionship. But that’s anyone who has gone through a big breakup or divorce. At the end of the day, we are self-sufficient and aren’t looking for heroes, but for a partner who can pull his or her own weight.

Read More: 12 Things You Need to Know Before Dating a Single Mom

Not Your Mama,

Laura

6 Ways to Relieve Stress as a Single Mom

Are you a stressed single parent? Welcome to the club! Adjusting to single motherhood definitely takes time but eventually, it’s simply the life you know and you’ll have a routine down pat. Still, women especially mothers, are known for biting off more than they can chew and not asking for enough help. This means that especially after a divorce, you could be feeling the burn mentally and physically, and no, I am not talking about voting for Bernie Sanders here. Some of you single moms may be laughing here when I say this but, there are ways to relieve your stress to bring you a happier and more peaceful life, post divorce. Things don’t always have to feel so difficult or challenging. Take my tips and find yourself feeling more at ease in your daily life after divorce!

Read More: 6 Ways to Relieve Stress as a Single Mom

Take a Deep Breath,

Laura

Why Divorce Made Me a Better Mom

I know there are plenty of naysayers on divorce. No one said it was an easy choice or that it is “easy” for kids. It’s a hard choice and can be tough on kids. It doesn’t mean, however, that a divorce has to ruin you and your kids’ lives forever. Can it temporarily and intermittently be stressful? The answer would be yes, but like many women who chose to divorce, for a long time I felt as if I were a terrible mom and parent for deciding, along with my ex, to split. I couldn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel for my daughter’s sake until finally, there we both were, standing in the light. The relief flooded me.

You could call me a glass-half-full kind of lady but as hard as the divorce was, it has also made me a better person, a better woman, a better future partner and a better mother. It has pushed me to limits that I realized were not limits. Divorce placed me in the hardest of situations and each time, I got myself out of the slippery knot a bit stronger, a bit smarter, a bit more positive, and a lot more confident. Divorce made me:

Read More: Why Divorce Made Me a Better Mom

It Can Make You a Better Parent, If You Let It!

Laura

16 Struggles of Being a Divorced Mom

Being a divorced mom has its pluses and minuses. There are times when the idea of being married again makes you want to jump a bridge. You are grateful for your single-mom life postdivorce. Then there are other days when you just want a partner right then and there and you wish you could hire a helping squad and have a friend pick your best match out of thin air! Parenting after divorce certainly has its rough terrain and learning curve. It’s almost as if you’re learning to reparent again and acquire a new way of viewing just about every single thing in your life. So it takes a little humor and a lot of chutzpah (that’s balls and guts for those of you who don’t speak Yiddish) to get through and make your life even more amazing as a divorced mom!

1. Where Is Everything?

When you’re a divorced mom, nothing stays at your house. It somehow always ends up at the other house. You will swear you bought your kid X amount of clothes and new sneakers, but somehow they’re either at your ex’s house or somewhere in purgatory.

 

Read More: 16 Struggles of Being a Divorced Mom

Pros & Cons,

Laura

5 Reasons I Love Being a Single Parent

Being a single parent isn’t easy, but neither is rocket science, finding a guy who knows the difference between “your” and “you’re,” or surviving an episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhousewithout wanting to strangle yourself to death. But even though single motherhood may have its cons and downfalls, there are so many wonderful things to embrace about being a single mom.

More of the Love

No kidding! Even though my child’s father is an active parent, when my daughter is with me, I get every inch of that love! Our bond is so very tight, and we have gotten the chance to develop a close relationship, because when it’s “Mommy time,” it’s “Mommy time,” and that means all of the kisses and hugs, too. How can anyone not cherish that?

Read More: 5 Reasons I Love Being a Single Parent

Love the Life You’re In,

Laura

11 Things All Single Moms Think but Don’t Say

There are some things a single mother thinks but most certainly won’t say! Unless, of course, we are running on pure fumes (happens often), wine (nighttime exists for a reason and bedtime too!), or totally off our rails (happens to the best of us). Here are a few things a single mom might be pondering but she won’t say.

Yes, Your Husband Being Away is EXACTLY Like Being a Single Parent

We have compassion for all parents and any and all mothering scenarios, but when you tell us your husband being away is like being a single parent, we ask you with our tongue in cheeks:

Is your bank account like a single parent’s?

Do you file single or head of household on your taxes?

Are you also online trying to find love with some of the biggest horror shows known to mankind?

Read More: 11 Things All Single Moms Think but Don’t Say

 

Silent,

Laura

Why You Don’t Need a Partner (Dad or Mom) to Complete a Family

When you tell someone you’re a single mom, whether it’s because of divorce or having a no-show parent, you always get the face. You know what I’m talking about — the face of pity.

It’s nice to know that people genuinely care and want things to be good for you. Most of the times, it’s not that someone wants to make you feel bad for being a single mother, but that they want things to be assumedly easier for you. And for the most part, people are in love with love — the ideas of couples and happy marriages.

The reality is your life may be absolutely dreamy and wonderful as a single parent, or perhaps it may be hard, lonely, and tough. I am hoping it’s not the latter. Either way, after talking to numerous single parents, there is a common theme I get from many parents just like me: they feel they’re missing out or that their family is incomplete because they’re lacking another partner. A dad. A mom. That somehow, their family is “wrong” and not valid or real because it doesn’t consist of two married or partnered parents raising a child under one roof.

This is just myth, farce, and a flat-out lie!

You don’t need a dad or another mom or partner to be a legitimate family!

Read More: Why You Don’t Need a Partner (Dad or Mom) to Complete a Family

You Are Great On Your Own,

Laura