I recently came across an article in The Guardian titled, “Single Parents: Seeing Beyond Stigma.” With the spotlight on teen parent television series, negative single parent stigmas continue. Sadly, this stigma behind single parenting is damaging to many and keeps many young single moms and dads from asking for help when they need it most.
While The Guardian focuses on single parenting in the UK, I would like to offer options for single moms and dads in the United States to seek help and be the best they can be.
According to Yahoo! News and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, teen pregnancy rates have dropped to a historic low in the United States. It was reported that the birth rate among younger women has declined, while the birth rate among older women has increased. But while these numbers change, the stereotypes attached to single parenting remain the same. This makes single parenting all the more challenging, creating low self-esteem and making it difficult to seek education and work.
The challenges that single parents face can be life-altering; therefore, it is crucial that single moms and dads have support. This support can be anyone from a friend or a family-member to a parenting professional. The key is to ask for help when you need it! Nobody should be afraid to ask for help. Single parents are no longer the minority. You may feel alone, but there are many single parents out there just like you.
The same goes to those that know single parents – give them your support! They may not ask for help, but try to understand the struggle they are going through. Offer to help babysit, motivate them to keep going, discuss financial struggles, etc.
Many single parents start their own support groups, often through the schools that their children attend. This can be a great way to make friends in similar situations. You can also help one another by scheduling carpools and play dates.
There are also a few organizations that support single parents. One of my favorites is Parents Without Partners. They hold educational and family activities like group discussions, lectures, potluck suppers, and picnics. Their chapters range from 10 to 400 members and can be found all around the US.
So don’t give in to the struggles that single parenting stigmas have amplified. You are not alone and support is around the corner. It’s okay to ask for help! Not only that, but I am here for you if you need any support or motivation. I want to help you be the best you! Feel free to contact me here and follow me on my own journey as a single mom through my website as well as Facebook and Twitter.