Compleat Mother Magazine presents Single Mom Stories
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Single Mom stories

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Click Here for information on
Nursing Programs!

Please send us your short story about being a single parent! There are many issues which you could write about. Don't worry about correct spelling or punctuation. We will help you with that aspect. Just send your story (could be just a paragraph or two) in email to and we will consider publishing it here.  Thank you!

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Click here to send your story to us for publication

The life of a single mother is not easy in this world. Here are personal glimpses into the lives of single mothers who are struggling but often emerging triumphant.

Back to School!

I am soon to be 25 years old and now have a very beautiful 9 month old daughter.  Her father was not in her life since the day that I told him that I was expecting her.  I found out that I was pregnant when I was 14 and a half weeks along.  I have had many complications along the way with her till I had her and have struggled at the same time. 

After I had her I was still struggling but had come to a conclusion in my life.  As a single parent in the world today, everything is so expensive when you have to get everything because the father is a dead beat.  I have gone back to school, and am going to be a Law Clerk when I am done.  You can't raise a child on min. wage now a days.  I have not been on welfare since June of 2003 and am happy about that.  You learn that you don't need a man in your life to be happy and it is the fathers loss for not being in the child's life.  If I can go back to school and better myself for my child while she is young anyone can.  It is hard but when you think about it and look in your child's eyes you know it will all be worth it in the long run. 

You can do anything if you put your heart and mind into it.

~ Denise



canít settle for that anymore

 

I am 21 years old and 14 weeks and 1 day pregnant. Although people like to think of me as a soon to be single parent I consider myself a parent now. Being a parent starts long before the baby gets here, but some people donít understand. I have known that I have been pregnant since the very beginning. I let the guy know whom I had been in a so called relationship with that I was late. Like most useless guys he says oh boy it canít get any worse.

 

Well for him I guess it did. A couple of days later I found out for sure indeed I was. We had only been talking for about 3months before I found out I was pregnant. I am a very understanding person so I knew he was scared and didnít know what to say and what he wanted to do. But being understanding has to come to and end. I asked him if he wanted to be with me and all he could say was I like the fact that we just chill. Of course who wouldnít like eating, sleeping, bathing, and fu#king. He wanted everything from a relationship but the commitment.

 

Well I canít settle for that anymore I have a baby on the way. He never asked when my doctors appointments are or how they been, he donít even have a clue when the baby is due. But I donít if he cares. Well someone should care, RIGHTÖ Yeah only God in these situations and a hell of a good family and friends.

 

But sometimes it feels like I need more I feel that he should care that soon there will be a little boy/girl coming into this world with half his genes. Of course I know I donít need anyone like him who only calls when he wants something and pays the role like I'm not even carrying his child but thatís easier said then done. I want to be able to share the sound of my babyís heartbeat with the father and have him be by my side when the baby starts moving but instead I experience all of these things alone. I know I said I have my family which I really do but with me being in another state since I am in my 3rd year of college its hard for them to know I am lonely. I always put on a role so my mom wonít worry about me and ask me to move back there. Deep down inside I know that I probably  could do this with out a father but it will nice to know if there is a guy out there like my step dad who will find me someday and sweep me off my feet.


Feel free to keep in touch I could always use a friend especially someone who understands what I have to go through. Good luck all u single parents and remember everything happens for a reason.

 

Sincerely

Najma 
 


support from my family and my friends

I am a single 21 year old who is 4 months pregnant with my first child. The baby's father was very abusive, controlling and cheated all the time. At first he kept telling me that he wanted a child and how much he wanted one with me. Well, right after moving into our new apartment I got pregnant. I was still on the pill but had been on antibiotics because of my being sick. I just found out about the pregnancy July 30, 2003. I left my ex-boyfriend before I knew I was pregnant. When he found out about it, he said that he could care less and that the baby's not his. Well, I am very lucky to have my mama and daddy hear to help me. I have since moved out of my own apartment and moved back in with my parents. I am having some complications with this pregnancy but my mama is has been by my side from day one. My ex also gave me an infection because of his cheating on me. I know that it is better for myself and this baby not to have this father in our lives. I have enough support from my family and my friends that I do not need him. This pregnancy was very unplanned but I love this child more than anything in this world. I am due February 21, 2004 and can't wait until I can finally see this child's face. I know that one day I will meet someone who will love me and will love this child and will want to raise this child as his own. I'm not worried about any of that right now. All I am worried about is my child being happy and healthy.  


be good to yourselves 

I met my husband while we were in H. S. It all felt like a sweet dream. High school sweethearts, getting married. I married him when I turned 18-two years after we met. I wanted a child so badly, it hurt.

My husband, at first, was a sweet, romantic and loving man. I never thought that I could live without him. Never thought our marriage was going to end. About a year and a half into our marriage, we finally conceived. Was great-everything I have ever thought it would be. At the time, we thought it would be a good idea to move in with his mother.

During my pregnancy, I realized the man I had loved for all these years, was revealing his true colors. His mother and him would make comments such as, "It better be a boy, or we'll give her up for adoption." Being pregnant, and not knowing the sex of my child, this would often get me upset. My supportive husband was no longer there. Instead, a man stood before me with an evil grin. Call this mental abuse, psychological abuse, whatever. I knew one thing. I was no longer happy with him.

Once my son was born (oh, they were happy about that!) things got even worse. He would criticize every aspect of motherhood, starting with breastfeeding, CO-sleeping, and every other decision I made concerning my newborn son. On the other hand, he would never spend any time alone with our boy, and when he did, it would be for 10 minutes-not even long enough for me to shower without worrying. When my son turned 9 months, my mother-in-law wanted to take my son on a "vacation" to another country, but said I could not join then (my husband was also going). When I refused-fearing I would never see my child again-they made threats at me saying they would get custody of my son.

At this point I knew that if I wanted my son to be happy and safe, I had to leave. Ten months later, and here I am. Motherhood has blessed me. I am stronger than I ever thought I would be, happier than ever before, and safer. I often felt guilty for my son is going to grow up without a father. His father has lost his supervised visitation rights, has not paid any of the court-ordered child support, and has been trying to play games with me ever since we separated.

When my son turned a year, I was sad. I kept thinking to myself- "This isn't the way it's supposed to be. This celebration is supposed to be mommy, daddy, baby, and other members of our family and friends. I know my son is too young to understand that our family is different from two-parent families, but I can see now, how much he needs male role model in his life. Unfortunately, I do not have a dad, brother, or other good male friends that are around for him. On play dates, he sees his friends climbing up to daddy's lap, and he gets sad... jealous...confused.... I see that, although my son is only 19 months. He is very bright, and he understands more than I think sometimes.

When I left his father, and went to court to get custody for my son, the judge asked me what do I do. It felt like the whole scene has frozen and I was thinking, "What do you mean what do I do? I am a Mom! believe it or not, that's more than any full time position. You don't even get a lunch break," then I hear her ask, "do you work? do you go to school?" And I sadly thought, "no. I do not go to school, although I wish that I had." But I heard myself say "yes.I'm starting school this September," and my head was yelling at me "what are you doing? you don't go to school," but I answered right back, "I guess now I am!" so before I knew it, September came around and I was indeed enrolled into school. My first semester had just ended. I am majoring in paralegal (always good to know the laws!) and have been loving it. I am getting excellent grades, and it is comforting to know that my son is close by- on campus day care. I know that he is safe, happy, and interacting with other children.

I am left with one wish-that my son continues to grow to become a happy, healthy, and good person.

I want to wish all of you single mommies out there-be good to yourselves and your children. You have one another, and that's the greatest gift anyone could ever ask for. Don't be too hard on yourselves and love yourselves. Love your little ones endlessly. I found my son to be an amazing source of strength. Good luck to you. 


Poem of Love and Rage

Hugs, Smiles, Happiness
My Lifeís Melody
Those are my Children
My Son, my Daughter
They fill me with Love
They are the Sun
The Sun that Shines from Within
The same Sun Shines Outwards
But now it shines like fire
good-byes, tears, sadness

the chorus of my life
that is THE System
The system is like a MACHETE
That attacks from the outside
the same Sun that Shines from within
is the fire burning on the surface

Poema de Amor Y Ravia
por, L. C. Olaniyi

Abrazos, Sonrisas, Felicidad
La melodia de mi vida
Esos son mis hijos
mi Hijo, mi Hija
Me llenan con Amor
Ellos son como el Sol
El sol que Brilla por dentro
Ese mismo Sol Brilla hacia fuera
Pero ahora brilla como un fuego
despedidas, lagrimas, tristeza

el coro de mi vida
eso es EL Sistema
EL sistema es como un MACHETE
Que nos ataca por fuera
EL mismo sol que Brilla por dentro,
es el fuego encendido por fuera


I write this poem in honor of my children and protest of the legal system that has not taken their total joy and well-being into consideration. I am a mother who loves her children.  I am a mother who has invested time, energy and resources into creating two joyful and loving children .  I am a mother who did it without the help of their father for far too long.

Finally, sense and savings went hand in hand I filed for divorce.  That is when my nightmare
began.  The system took over.  The system granted equal rights for the man who had wiped me of my savings, robbed me of trust practically abandoned all the needs of our two beautiful children.  In less than fifteen minutes of discourse between two lawyers and a few hours of review, the system stole my childrenís security ...legally!

As advocates for children, we must demand that judges wear the glasses and hearts of the children first and foremost.  No child should be stripped of the only security known to them without  due cause.  In my case, the system granted equal rights to a father who had abandoned his daughter and cared for his son when it proved convenient.  While living in Iowa with our two children the system granted temporary shared custody until matters could be further resolved.  The father has made certain that matters do not resolve themselves quickly.

For my daughter, this meant going to a father she barely recognized .  For my daughter, this meant being stripped away from the only lifestyle, security and love she ever knew.  For both children this meant traveling 16 hours in a car every two weeks and viewing unhealthy and derogatory behavior towards others , especially women. While I reduced the burden somewhat by moving nearer to my childrenís father and nearer to my most amazingly supportive and loving extended family of cousins, aunts, uncles, parents and grandmother, temporary shared custody has meant months of worry and insecurities for everyone who knows our children.

I understand that the system wants to be fair to both parents.  Yet, had the parents been fair to one another it would not have needed the systemís involvement.  It is unacceptable to reach for equality at the expense of the childrenís best interest and needs.  Rhetoric must be matched by action.

As a mother, I thought my case was cut and dry since I had undeniably been both childrenís
primary provider since birth.  Furthermore, their father moved two states away with no reliable transportation of his own just one month after his daughter was born. Their father undeniably prioritized his own personal interests above those of his childrenís. Despite his recorded threats towards myself and others, the system was willing to chance the well-being of the children.  It is not uncommon for children to be required to go with a parent with established cases of abuse.  Many judges still feel that abusing the mother is no indicator towards violence on the part of the children.  While violent parents may retain custody rights of their children, perfectly wonderful undocumented parents have been stripped of their rights due to their status alone.  Many other loving and capable parents have had the same rights stripped away when a biological parent decides they are ready to parent their child despite the fact that their child was given up for adoption via proper procedure. 

Unfortunately politics, money and the aforementioned reasons continue to take priority over the best interest of our children in family courts throughout this nation.For this reason a recent  documentary entitled Small Justice by Ms. Garland Waller has won many awards  including the NY International Independent film and video award and has been hailed by advocates throughout our nation.  State senator of Michigan, John Hansen has written in support of this documentary which depicts actual accounts and horrifying statistics showing extreme cases of gender bias, denial of due process, incompetence, corruption and fraud.  The video shows how unfairly the family court system works on behalf of women and children time after time.

In one case, a girl now in college details how the system enabled her fatherís extreme abuse by appointing her fatherís lover to be her supposed protector. She withstood years of abuse at the hands of the system.  No child should be used as pawns in the game of life.  If you wish to learn more or advocate on behalf of children to make our family courts system stronger, please contact L. C. Olaniyi at El Nuevo

Opinion.  The following resources may be helpful if you or someone you know has suffered at the hands of  the family court system : http://www.smalljustice.com ; http://www.rightsforchildren.org ; http://www.familylawcourts.com .

Love your children. Love all children.  I still hold hope that love will mold the machete into a more acceptable form.  Let the metal transform into the hourglass figure that nurtures rather than destroys.

~Kogiqueen


I have decided to keep the baby

I am a divorced single parent.  My ex was verbally and mentally abusive.
I am glad he is no longer with me. I recently met a man who I had been seeing for a while, and I became pregnant.  I am very happy that I am pregnant once again, although the friends that I had are not.  None of them have called me ever again since I told them that I got pregnant, all but one girl who I've know for far less time than the other friends.

I have decided to keep the baby, come hell or high water.  Friends or no friends, job or no job, relatives involved or not, I don't care. I have also decided that I am going to have a homebirth. Last time I had my baby and I was in labor, I kept thinking to myself, why the hell am I leaving my home to drive to a hospital to get help with my giving birth?

I don't need anyone's help, this is a natural occurrence of the body?  I felt kind of silly even going to another place to have strangers help me deliver my baby. I am going it alone this time.  Husband or no husband, the one I had before didn't even help me with anything, when my water broke he said he had to go to work. I even had to order groceries to be delivered.  All this from a man I thought I knew after many years together. I did everything by myself always, so I am used to it. I think it is very very rare when you find good friends that are genuine.  I have yet to find those.


god saved our lives

hi
 

my husband was  a very abusive man he beat me and when i got pregnant it got worse. my pregnancy included broken fingers, dislocated jaw, numerous bruises, a hernia, muscle damage to my leg as well as hyperemesis, and kidney stones and a venereal disease because he cheated on me. finally i had a beautiful baby girl and he promised to quit hurting me.  he didn't so i left him. 

at first i left so my daughter would be safe but after several victims counseling sessions i decided it was for me too.   my child, lily, is the light of my life and i want her to have a good life and i would like for us to have a place to live.  I am raising her by myself.  we lived in a shelter for battered women until things cooled off a lot and then we moved in with my mom.  i love my mom and am grateful for her help but i know we have  been a tremendous burden on her.  i have a good job and work six days a week but i also have a mountain of debt due entirely to medical bills and student loans. 

we have been completely healthy and happy this last year away from him and the divorce will be final january 28th 2003. apparently not soon enough for him because he has gotten two more women pregnant since i left.  he was ordered to pay child support by the judge during the restraining order but it has been a year and he has not paid a cent and the child support enforcement agency won't go after him until the divorce is final.  it  has been a messy divorce with him making false allegations and trying for custody but court ordered psychological evaluations have shown me to be completely sane with stress coming only from him and his shows that he is bipolar and has so much hostility they do not   recommend visitation with any children.   god saved our lives and has gotten us this far i have faith he will see us through but if anyone can help that to happen sooner i would be eternally grateful.


Also if anyone can help me to get published i have written a book about what happened to me from a religious point of view as well as one straightforward and nondenominational.  Staying in the shelter has also influenced me to write books for the children of domestic violence homes.  If you can help or know someone who can, please get in touch with me.
 
thank you and god bless you!
kimberly 

They are my inspiration

This fall, my daughters and I both start school- I in
college and my twin five year old daughters in
kindergarten. I had my daughters when I was sixteen.
At the time, I decided to graduate early and start
classes to attain a job so that I could support my
girls. It was extremely important to me that the
people around me pay as little as possible for my
irresponsible actions, and that I be as responsible as
I could for the decisions I had made. My daughters are
the most wonderful things that have ever happened to
me. They are my inspiration.

After graduating from high school I finished a year of
classes towards a computer programming degree, and was
lucky enough to land a job as a programmer. I have
been working in that capacity ever since. I continued
going to classes with the intention of getting a
computer information systems degree until last spring
when my boss asked me why that was still my goal. He
pointed out to me that I have already learned
everything I need to know, and can pretty much pick up
any computer language or skill needed, as I have
already demonstrated through my work.

It was through that realization that I decided to
change my focus and go for a bachelor of arts degree.
I haven't quite decided what my major will be. I think
it will be English.

Most of my spare time is spent with my daughters, or
in reading, writing, or keeping up my website
(http://www.upsoclose.com). I also enjoy making or
fixing things, an evening spent with friends or
family, and a good dose of humor.

I am a firm believer that you are in charge of your
own life, and it's quality. I've used that saying to
get myself through all of the ups and downs of single
parenting, and it's kept me striving for more for my
children and myself.

Single parenting is frustrating, because outsiders
just don't understand the pressure of being a single
parent. I've received many a scornful look for having
to ask a second time, say if my daughter has to return
school library books on Tuesday or Thursday since the
twins are in different classes. I have to stifle my
indignation at being misunderstood and stereotyped. If
parenting itself is a thankless job, single parenting
is doubly so. In my mind, I am proud of what I have
achieved, and the happiness I've so far been able to
create in my home for my girls.

Carina Silfverduk


go kick somebody in the ass

I am a single mother, of 2 boys ages 5 and 10.  My husband left me for the first time when I was 7 months pregnant with my youngest child.  Needless to say I was devastated.  He did however, come back and leave again 5 more times.  Boy those were hard times.  I never thought I'd live through it, but here I am. Feeling more self sufficient, beautiful, and powerful than ever.  I have a job as a nanny which allows me much time with my children, and have plans (god willing) to attend nursing school In March of 2003.  I just cant seem to find financial aid information on the internet.  There are lots of sites most of which want you to buy a subscription to get info.  Can anyone help me find a site in which I can apply on line for grant money for school???  Your help will be greatly appreciated.  Oh, and by the way, school would never have been an option if that he was still in my life.  Making it on my own is the most wonderful gift I have ever been blessed with.  Hold your head high and love your kids.  Your pride and strength cannot be taken.  If you no longer possess them, you have given them away.  Put on your boots, go kick somebody in the ass and take them back 

Lori Miller


your kids are all wonderful!

I am single mum to 2 lovely lads now age 11 and 17, and am planning to have another baby very soon, the only problem being that although not lesbian i do not want a partner. I enjoy being a mum, i have my own life , and i unschool , and work from home. I don't consider childcare 2work" as in hard work and a chore although i do consider it the most important "job" int he world!

I live in the N.E of England, and am a member of NNN, and the local natural parenting radical unschooling network which a few like minded families set up because EO was not for us!
I am always happy to "chat" to or even meet other like minded attached mums and unschooler families.
If you want info about baby slings (new ones from Beginnings,made in Holland, mail order, or second hand barter or exchange) or velcro fastening cotton nappies, breastfeeeding products etc get in touch at KinderSupplies@yahoo.com
Lots of love to everyone you do a great job and remember your kids are all wonderful!
Cal cassidy


my daughter saved my life

I got a divorce when my first born turned 3 months old.  We had a terrible abusive marriage and I knew it.  But I had already invested 7 years into it and well time is valuable damn it!  I was just sitting outside between midnight feedings, thinking about what I really wanted for my daughter.  I wanted her to love her extended family, to have a few real life long friends, and to know and love God.  Hum . . . 3 things I sure didn't have.  How could I give her these gifts if I didn't have them myself to give?
 

So I believe that my daughter saved my life.  What I couldn't do for myself I could most certainly do for my baby.  Leaving my abusive marriage has allowed me to grow and flourish into the person I was meant to be. 
 
There was only one problem.  I really wanted to have a bigger family.  Only without the man in the house part.  I guess it was going to take a few extra years to shake off that miserable experience, and to trust myself again in making wise decisions with my choice in male companions.  I mean hell!  I'll take the blame!  Obviously there must have been something fiercely wrong with me to live like that for so long!
 
Now this dream of wanting another child was for the long term goal of having the dynamics of that 3rd relationship for my daughter's sake as well as my own.  And I felt like I was doing a great job in the motherhood department, even if I do say so myself.  Of course, I had an exceptional child to start with.  She was a cake walk! (And still is) Finally someone I could love unconditionally without any resentments attached.
 
So here I was 34 and thinking how am I ever going to get over loving my freedom enough, drop down into feeling desperately lonely enough, that I would be even "willing" to give up my time to get to know some guy long enough, that I trust he would be worth compromising all this for???  Seemed too clear the odds were high. But I became obsessed.
 
So obsessed that I kept every outfit my daughter outgrew, giant zipper bags of toddler toys, the infant seat, the toddler seat, the booster seat, the toilet training seat, the baby swing, the  . . . well you get the picture.  And I would still buy things at garage sales and second hand shops for the someday-baby.  I just couldn't bear the thought that my family life would be limited to just my daughter and I. 
 
So I saved up some $ again and went in for intro uterus inseminations (IUIs).  And did you know the chances are actually slimmer when you use frozen sperm even when it's placed right on you cervix, because they don't live as long?  I didn't know that!  And $2800 and 5 lost nests later I was devastated.  Do I keep going??  Are they even doing what they are being paid to do down there??? It had taken me 2 years to conceive my daughter.  I was hoping this would take by the 2nd or 3rd try. It was miserable.  I was buying maternity clothes and crying in the parking lots whenever a pregnant woman floated by.
 
But an odd thing happened.  As I was fairly confident in my decision to raise a child single handedly, I began to more and more feel confronted with the fact that I didn't want the child to feel that he may be one of many more born from the same donor sperm.  For me that issue was prevailing.  He/she also could never confront the father and that "permanent fact" was so conclusive.  So I opted to call a halt on the whole thing and try to carry on with the dream unanswered.  It was still painful but I felt I made the right decision.
 
The next thing I knew I was having sex.  Wow!  Hadn't done that with a new partner for the past 9 years!!  He was just a sexy friend.  Kind of a friend - more of an acquaintance I had known for several years on and off through my work.  I called him up one day and told him my whole story and just came right out and asked him if he would like to help me get pregnant.  He said "sure,  why not".  Okay.  Good enough.
So a week later I was ovulating (by this point I had peed on many an ovulation and pregnancy stick)  It was my life.  It was what I did!
 
Guess what!?  About 12 days later my stick had a line!!!  And at 36 I gave birth to a baby boy, only 4 years after my daughter.  We are all so happy.  My friend is not in my son's life. I am the sole provider of both of my children, and I like it this way.  I hope some day they develop a relationship, but that is between them.  Meanwhile I know that I am giving my son (and daughter) a good loving, healthy home life.
 

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