Single parenthood is on the rise. According to the U. S Census Bureau, there are 13.6 million single parents in the United States. Of these, the overwhelming majority are mothers.
While most single parenting situations are the result of divorce, a growing number are not. Many single moms have never been married. But no matter what the situation, being a single parent can be tough.
Obstacles of Single Parents
In today's economy, it's hard for dual parent households to make ends meet. As a single parent, you're responsible for the entire family's needs, but with about half the income you would have if a partner were present. Unfortunately, the bills do not get cut in half. You're still responsible for housing, food, clothing, school expenses, and everything else.
Being a single parent also puts you in charge of all of the important decisions for the household. In a sense this is liberating, as you don't have to defend your position to anyone else. But it also adds a lot of pressure, as you don't have anyone to give you feedback or validate your choices. So you have to be confident in your own ability to do things right, and forgiving of yourself if something doesn't turn out as you had hoped.
Tips for Getting By
Single parenting can be a challenge, so it helps to have a few tricks up your sleeve. Here are some things you can do to improve your cash flow:
Being a single mom is something of a balancing act. But with some careful planning, you can stay within your budget. And with your budget under control, you can spend less time worrying and more time with your children.
Jane Bell is the resident editor of the Parenting Guide at Schmoozins.com - an online magazine for women that gives all women a voice. Join us as a contributor, schmoozer or just hang out a while.