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to have said this re my friend not being like a single mum?

(86 Posts)
namechangedtohelpyou Sat 20-Jul-19 14:10:55

I am a single mum. Lone parent. Left domestic abuse. Raised my son for the last few months on my own. He's 8 months old and I'm exhausted (but love motherhood regardless!).

With a couple of friends today. One has 2 kids, one has 1 aged 1. The friend who has one aged 1 made a comment saying she feels like a lone parent and that it's so hard as her DP is away 3 nights a week (but has 3.5 days off work and at home every week too!). I don't know if she just didn't think, but she went on, and on, and on about how hard it is practically being a single parent and how amazing it is when her DP comes home and runs her baths and takes the baby.

I said 'youre not really a single parent though are you?' - that's it, that's all I said. She went in to a proper Huff and hasn't spoken to me since!

WIBU to say this?

namechangedtohelpyou Sat 20-Jul-19 14:14:03

For reference, I never complain about being on my own. It is far better than being in an abusive relationship and I am truly grateful that I AM on my own as opposed to with him. Still, bloody hard!

F2Feee Sat 20-Jul-19 14:14:24

Yanbu. She was very insensitive and thoughtless to have said that to you. But well done to you for doing this alone, I cant imagine how tough it is.

Pleasegodgotosleep Sat 20-Jul-19 14:15:10

She's probably embarrassed she's put her foot in it! If not then she's very self absorbed.

namechangedtohelpyou Sat 20-Jul-19 14:15:35

It's exhausting but honestly I feel so free. Novelty of being able to speak without being abused and parent without being judged hasn't worn off yet!

Ohyesiam Sat 20-Jul-19 14:16:14

Yanbu, I hope she’s embarrassed.
It’s y the stuff that falls out of people’s mouths.

Sparklesocks Sat 20-Jul-19 14:16:59

I think you were right to say something, it’s most likely very difficult when she’s on her own but it’s not comparable to being a single parent.
And well done for leaving the abuse and going it alone, you’re doing really well.

ArnoldBee Sat 20-Jul-19 14:17:45

I feel like I'm a single parent as my husband has mental health issues so it can be literally like having an extra child to look after. We all have challenges!

BigRedLondonBus Sat 20-Jul-19 14:18:01

Yanbu but you will lots of posters saying that you are

NC4Now Sat 20-Jul-19 14:19:35

I find it a lot easier parenting solo than in a difficult relationship but it’s still bloody hard work. And it doesn’t sound like your friend is in a difficult relationship.
No-one’s ever run me a bath in my life! Ok, since I was about six.

ArabellaDoreenFig Sat 20-Jul-19 14:20:40

OP YA(definitely)NBU!

My husband works away mon-fri, and used to be away for months for training/deployments and I wouldn’t compare the situation to being the same as a lone parent - because it isn’t!

I think your pal needs to learn a bit of empathy!

SheldonandMama Sat 20-Jul-19 14:21:03

What you said was fine. She was a bit insensitive and then had an overly sensitive reaction to what you said (which I think was fine). Maybe she's just over tired too. People don't have as much empathy when they're feeling stressed. Dont take it personally. She was probably in an 'all about me/no-one thinks about me' mood. What you are managing alone is far tougher. I have real admiration for you. My single friend A is raising 3 dcs and her married friend B moaned that A had some evenings alone and so she had it easier. I was flabbergasted she would say this. Just goes to show how blinkered we can be.

Whoseagooddoggiethen Sat 20-Jul-19 14:21:36

Honestly as a single mum to 11 year olds I have heard every version of the 'i feel like a single mum' comments. People just do not think to be honest. I had the twins at a playgroup and one mum, stay at home mum with a hubbie would worked a 9-5 mon-fri job would often comment that she felt like a single mum as she was on her own every day. The fact that her husband earned enough for her not to work and was there not only financially, emotionally and physically for her every evening from 6pm and every weekend seemed not to occur to her!!! I never bothered pulling her up on it, just smiled and nodded. Her ignorance never offended me to be honest, I dont think she ever put much thought into anything she said. Take no heed, I am sure she was running her mouth and see it as a compliment that she is moaning about her life no matter how good she has it where you are not complaining about yours despite yours being harder! You may just be doing such a great job that hardship for you has never crossed her mind x

SmartPlay Sat 20-Jul-19 14:21:42

You were right to say that, because it's the truth. I'm happy as a single mum, I don't complain, but comments like these just piss me off.

MrsGrannyWeatherwax Sat 20-Jul-19 14:24:49


My husband is away a lot for months at a time but I’d never compare myself to a single parent as I can share my joy regarding our baby and do have the option for his help when he’s home. It’s hard but I don’t think it’s comparable and I’ve never complain to a friend who is raising a child alone.

formerbabe Sat 20-Jul-19 14:27:53


Presumably her dh is away earning money.

IntoValhalla Sat 20-Jul-19 14:31:12

She was a complete tit hmm and hopefully the reason she’s in a huff is because she’s embarrassed herself.
I’m another one who’s DH works away a hell of a lot - anything ranging from a few days at a time to up to 8 months at a time, we have 2 young DCs and are expecting another. I spend tons of time solo parenting, but wouldn’t describe myself as being like a single parent because I’m not! Even if he does deploy overseas for 6 months, he comes back and mucks in at the end of it!

PookieDo Sat 20-Jul-19 14:35:35

This is the misconception of being a single parent that in the main it is the lack of someone running you a bath or taking over from you at the end of a crap day.

When you are single and alone the crushing weight of financial and sole responsibility to keep the small humans alive weighing on you, you don’t get time to give too many fucks about the bath. The bath is the least of your worries

supersop60 Sat 20-Jul-19 14:37:50

My DP used to work away a lot, and I felt like I was carrying all the work at home (and working myself)
But he was earning money for us. Single parents don't have that.
OP I hope your friend apologises.

YouJustDoYou Sat 20-Jul-19 14:39:38

YADNBU. My dh is away for a week at a time, BUT COMES BACK. I don't have the sole weight of anything. I've had people comment, oh you're like a single parent, and I just laugh. No, no I'm not even close.

DrCoconut Sat 20-Jul-19 14:39:49

I remember leaving my abusive ex. The first time I took my baby for a walk in the park knowing I could go home when I felt like it and make what I wanted for tea was incredible. It's been 19 years now and I'm still grateful for my freedom. Something emotional about your OP just really resonated with me there. I eventually met someone else but am now a lone (as opposed to single) parent again, of 3. I would probably want to punch anyone who said they were like a lone parent when they weren't, unless they have done it they have no idea how hard it can be. There is no respite ever, even if your kids are at school you're thinking about dentist appointments, cubs/swimming/football/whatever, buying and paying for uniforms, getting them from the childminder on time, work etc etc. Every bedtime it's your turn, every peed or sicked bed you're washing it. Only one lot of annual leave to cover school holidays. Not saying others don't do these but with a decent partner they are shared - you can relieve yourself of some of the grind. In short YANBU

PixieLumos Sat 20-Jul-19 14:42:17

YANBU. My DH goes abroad for work up to 6 weeks at a time - it’s still not the same as being a single parent.

Candyfloff Sat 20-Jul-19 14:47:33

I'm in the same boat as you OP (and have been since DD was a couple of months old.) Her father has never been involved.

It is nothing the same. She's been very self-absorbed there, so hopefully she's feeling suitably embarrassed now.

I remember one of my friends saying the same sort of thing towards me when DD was 6 months old. I just said 'Yeah, sounds tough. Now imagine doing that 24/7, 365 days a year. With no partner to take the baby at any point.'

VenusTiger Sat 20-Jul-19 14:52:59

Her huff and silence are because she knows you’re right. It’s like when people are offended (sometimes) it’s because the truth hurts.

AzraiL Sat 20-Jul-19 15:01:53

My DH travels a lot for work. It's difficult when he's gone but I know he will eventually come back. I sometimes feel like I barely get through those few days/weeks but I would still never dream of comparing myself to a single mum. I honestly don't know how you do it. You single mums are warriors.

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