Being a single parent can be demanding and stressful. However, there is still much to enjoy about parenting as a main or sole caregiver if you can reduce your stress levels. Here are some hints for how to make things easier on yourself and get a sense of balance in your life.
Surround yourself with support
It can be tempting as a single parent to feel that you absolutely must do everything yourself, however this is a recipe for burnout. Try to find friends and family who can help you with babysitting duties or running errands. Having a proper support network can be a lifeline when you’re not feeling at your best.
Set aside time for yourself
Everyone needs the occasional evening to themselves. If you can find some support with childcare, why not join a class, go to the gym or just spend the evening relaxing? Having a night off once in a while will do wonders for your energy the rest of the time.
Set aside time for your kids
It can be hard as a single parent to find time just to enjoy being with your children. Work, chores and errands can all mount up, however it’s important to give your children enough attention and support to maintain your relationship with them.
Allow yourself to move on
If you’ve been on your own for a while, it might be time to start considering dating again. Many single parents worry about how their children will react should they want to meet someone new, and this can be difficult. However, as long as you’re open, honest and respectful of what your children need from you, it’s possible to look for love. Online dating through sites such as eHarmony Canada is a great way for single parents to find love.
Set up a routine
If you have a daily routine in place, it can really help you to cope with a multitude of tasks. It can also help your kids to adjust to the changes in their lives. If they know what time they will be leaving for school, eating dinner and going to bed, they can start to feel more secure.
You won’t have time to do absolutely everything that either you or your children want to do. As their main or sole caregiver, there just aren’t enough hours in the day. Be realistic and don’t feel guilty – some weeks will be easier than others.
Coming From School – Some rights reserved by G.OZCAN on Flickr
Heather and Son – Some rights reserved by Dustin J McClure on Flickr
Guest Author Bio
Hannah Jackson is a freelance writer and mum of two based in the UK. She enjoys understanding relationships and exploring themes of commitment and love.
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