Tuesday, 10 June 2008

Can You Be Both Parents?

I’m sure this is a subject that many single parents think about and discuss.

In fact I’ve conversed with a few about it myself.

Generally the difference between my own, and the more ‘usual’ single parent situation is that there is, in that case, another parent, it is just the parents don’t live together anymore.

That is simplifying a bit, I know. And I’m not saying I’ve got it tougher, in many ways I actually think I have it easier, as I set all the boundaries and have complete control over who is in my child’s life and what he gets up to.

My genuine concern is whether I do a good enough job of being a mom. Or provide my child with what, ideally, his mother would have given him.

I’m not alone with these concerns.

I read this article with interest the other week, as it is written by a man who is raising children alone.

A similar yet very different situation to my own.

But, the article reassured me to some extent, just because the weaknesses he talks about, and what he thinks the female part of child raising is, I think I’m quite good at.

Routine has always ruled in my parenting style.

I mean, daily routine – eating times, bathing, stories and bed-time. And the ongoing routine – activities, days out, in, hair cuts, shoes, dentist, visits, and short breaks.

What I think I’m beginning to learn, and believe, is that each of us is different, and that is not necessarily about what is, or is not, hanging between our legs.

We have strengths and weaknesses, we have a nature, and we listen or not, depending on what state of mind we are in.

No single parenting situation is ever going to be ideal, but we just have to make the most of it. Much as we do in any parenting situation

I hope I’m doing that, with bells on. Share/Save/Bookmark


Arjan said...

I guess as long as you're trying to do the best you can you will succeed, and scrambling through your blog, I'm convinced you are doing your very best!

Single Parent Dad said...

Thanks Arjan.

It's nice to read things like that, and I am doing my best. And that's about all you can, or should, do isn't it?

Miss Britt said...

The good news is, there are lots of other people in the world that will always give our kids "what they need" that we can't.

That's true whether you're a single parent or not.

jason said...

I was tipped off about your blog today by Dan over at All That Comes With It. I look foward to reading much more of your story.

Penelope said...

Dan pointed me in this direction so Hello!!
I'll just be snopping through the archives for a while if that's okay? You do have wine over here - right? ;o)

Jo Beaufoix said...

Hi SPD. I came over from Dan's. I love what you're doing here. It's my dream to write too and my kids are brilliant fodder. I have Miss E (7) and Miss M (3). We're a two parent household and we both have different parenting styles which can lead to disagreement sometimes, so I totally agree with what you say about making the most of it. You just have to go with what you feel is right. Max is a cutie. :D

Single Parent Dad said...

Miss Britt = I agree. Grandparents, aunties, uncles and friends all to be utilised to the, erm, Max.

Jason, Penelope & Jo thanks for coming over from Dan's. And for your kind comments. You are all very welcome. We shall have the odd wine, and whine, for that matter.

Linda said...

Hellooo, your blog is looking great and reading about what you get up to, you are doing brilliantly - we are all just doing the best we can, aren't we?

Single Parent Dad said...

Howdie Linda, Nice to see you here. We certainly are just doing our best.

Jeff said...

Hi Ian,

I Stopped by here via Dan's blog. He was right, you have a great place here. I'll be back!

Single Parent Dad said...

Thanks Jeff.

You are most welcome. I look forward to your return.

Roads said...

Well done, Ian - an excellent piece and thought-provoking as usual.

You're doing a marvellous job.

Single Parent Dad said...

Cheers Roads.

I does me bestest.

Kori said...

I don't know how I got here; I don't even know who Dan is. But in a nutshell, NO, you can't be both parents, and don't kid yourself into even trying. And to argue with someone else who said this, no, you won't ALWAYS find people who will give your kids what they are missing. What you do is cobble together some kind of a support network for yourself and your child, and you will get through it all one day at a time. And I do agree with what you said about maybe having it easier because you are widowed as opposed to divorced; you are somehow set apart as doing something heroic and brave, whilst those of us who are single parents due to choices are simply a drain on the economy. Also, there is not a stigma attached to widowhood, or even for divorced dads with custody, whereas with divorce, there is. However: we are ALL just trying to get through our lives one moment at a time, and are trying to make the best life possible for your children who don't have one of their parents around. And some days it really sucks, but you know, it is worth it. Most of the time, :)

Darren said...

Dan sent me over too. Nice blog.

Single Parent Dad said...

Hi Kori, thanks for your comment.

We try to give our children the best of what we can, regardless of who is in their lives. I see some families that make me sad, as they don't manage that, even though they have the correct personel.

Single Parent Dad said...

Cheers Darren, glad you like it.

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