Advanced search

how do you get through the first month of being a single parent?

(24 Posts)
Vizzle Wed 06-Mar-13 21:23:28

I have booted my boyfriend out of our house (my house) because of his love of narcotics. (Went through rehab - relapsed a month later.)

Now I'm just a bit unsure about how to get through the next little while...

We have two gorgeous kids, but they're still very young and I'm terrified of bringing them up alone with no family nearby.

Plus I've only just gone back to work after maternity leave (home-based, but still very stressful!)

And then there's the whole thing that if he does finally get clean he's welcome back. But really I feel like I can't give him any more chances.

And I'm so heartbroken I feel like I just want to go to sleep at least 5 times a day.

He needs to still see the kids, as do his parents, who I'm not particularly fond of. Oh, so many things! Someone give me some advice on how it all works.

ThePskettiIncident Wed 06-Mar-13 21:28:30

One day at a time. Don't try and do too much.

I did/do the financial stuff first, bills, benefits, insurances etc

Get a routine going, especially for any times you might struggle, but don't put too much pressure on yourself. Some of it naturally falls into place.

My organisational skills are incredible after 2 years alone! I never thought that would happen!

And go and meet other parents- children's centre, soft play, clubs and groups.

It can be wonderful being captain of your own ship.

Good luck!

ina75 Wed 06-Mar-13 21:47:15

My first month was January. I felt relieved, then excited, then worried, then depressed... we're almost mid March and I feel a bit of all of the above, and a bit of hapiness. It won't be easy, but you might feel better. Get out of the house with the kids as often as you can. Try to discover all the positives. If you can, find some time for yourself... even half an hour.

Good luck!

MsColour Fri 08-Mar-13 21:37:09

Don't try and do it all on your own. Ask for help from friends, family, neighbours. if people offer help then take it - if they don't then ask. Try and find some adult company every day to save you going mad and get out of the house as much as possible.

Try and get into routines and write everything down. Your head will be all over the place right now so you are likely to forget things.

Get advice on contact money etc. CAB is always a good place to start.

And try and look after yourself. Talk to people. Counselling would be good but not always possible. Try and think of this as a new start and not the end. It will take time to get used to your new life but you will get there x

thegirlinthesassyspace Fri 08-Mar-13 22:13:59

Have you thought of asking your health visitor to refer you for a homestart volunteer? They will come and give you practical and emotional support every week. I have one and she's just a local lady trained to help me in whatever way I want ( sometimes she watches my twins so I can sleep) - it takes the pressure off when she's here. She's a volunteer so knows she's there to help me. Whereas sometimes with friends and even siblings I feel I can't moan too much, and still end up running round making them tea and stuff. Anyway, hope you are workimg things out, xx

YourHandInMyHand Fri 08-Mar-13 22:24:25

Just take it one day at a time, go easy on yourself, and pull in as much help as you can. Buy in a big pack of paper plates for days when you have too much on and do any dry meals on those, also think about a few quick stand by meals you can do on busy/tired days. Buy a bottle of UHT milk and stick it at the back of a cupboard (ditto loaf of bread in back of freezer) for the day when you run out and can't leave the house due to illness.

I found that getting my finances in order helped me feel less stressed. Make sure you are getting all the help you can, call tax credits, call housing office and see if you can get any help, etc. Look see if there are any bills you can cut or reduce.

Emotionally I'd say just go with it, I found it a bit of a roller coaster and even though I knew my decision was the right I still had some really tough times where I just cried and cried.

I second homestart, I did some volunteer work for them in the past and they are a fab organisation. Nice to have a non-biased, non judgemental adult visitor, they keep everything confidential, and are just there to generally support you. :-)

MySonIsMyWorld Sat 09-Mar-13 09:29:10

One day at a time. Stay focused. Ive just done my first month (again) well actually ive done 4 weeks and 3 days! I know how you feel, ive had no contact from ex dp and he back on facebook adding girls...
you will have wobbly days but im told it gets better x

ToTeachOrNotToTeach Sat 09-Mar-13 09:32:55

Definitely recommend home start.

Catchingmockingbirds Sat 09-Mar-13 09:36:24

Make your own little routine and stick to it, when things are really getting to you then just try and get through your routine for that day. And most importantly - give yourself time to get used to everything.

kingbeat23 Sat 09-Mar-13 09:49:40

Can't believe that it's 2.5 years now. When it first happened I didn't think I would be strong enough to cope, but now, I can't believe that I've come this far.

Coping with an addiction of a loved one is devastatingly hard and top that with a breakdown of a relationship where children are involved and its not so hard to see why you're in a dilemma.

I was lucky enough to have a fantastic hv who set me up with ace health care practitioners, home start wasn't available to me, but it sounds fantastic so if you can then do it!!

Don't forget. You are a person too as well as being a mother and it is important to have some time by yourself with no responsibilities (so work doesn't count !!!) and some adult time. Use it wisely (I take myself to a gallery and do some swimming - I was using the time to clean my house from top to bottom too!)

You can do this, the amount of joy I get from knowing that the wonderful person that my child is, is because of my input alone is immense. It's hard but worth it.

Good luck! X

(Oh yeah, and posting on mn helped me in so many ways its untrue!!!)

Chandras Sat 09-Mar-13 09:53:16

You need two things as a single parent:
- Routines
- sleep

On the first days what worked for me was to put my son to bed at 7 and go to sleep at the same time. Which resulted in me being wide awake at 4 am, giving me plenty of "me" time, which I used to do exercise in front of the TV then do some reading, do house shores and be ready for the day and in a good mood by the time Ds woke up.

Eventually I started moving things around, as Ds was going to sleep on time I could invite people around for dinner/coffee.

On the sundays he was with his dad, i used to spend the morning in a farmers market then come home and cook all the dinners we needed for thd next 2 weeks and put it in ghe freezer. This saved my sanity as we used to arrive home very tired after a long commute/day.

Chandras Sat 09-Mar-13 10:12:08

... And remember, the most important person in that household is you. You are the one keeping the ship afloat, so as long are you are well, the children will be fine. Don't let them go in the driving seat out of guilt, when unsure on how to deal with endless demands from the children or challenging behaviour, just stop and think: if I weren't a single parent, what would I say/do? That's the right answer.

Your job feeds the family and keep the roof above your heads so protecting the space to do it is also a priority.

thegirlinthesassyspace Sat 09-Mar-13 14:31:11

Aalso, if homestart is not available where you are then barnardos do a similar support scheme. A friend has a volunteer through it as she didn't have homestart in her area, and I think the barnardos volunteer was able to provide even more hours than homestart normally does, so defo ask health visitor to refer you.
I also found just going to children centre regularly to feed babies or do stuff like baby massage ( it was free) helped make sure I wasn't getting cabin fever at home, and the twins usually got their morning and lunchtime naps on the walk / drive there while I got some fresh air too.

Also - like someone else said on this thread already - I went to bed when the babies did for the first 3 mobths. It's so true that you're wide awake at 4am but that's sometimes when you feel most
calm and can gave some time to reflect on

thegirlinthesassyspace Sat 09-Mar-13 14:32:18

Reflect on some of the all consuming emotions you are feeling, and start to then realize how well you are doing si far. Good luck

Mum2Fergus Sun 10-Mar-13 09:43:57

Can I join?! Will be a lone parent in about...oh, an hour!


MySonIsMyWorld Mon 11-Mar-13 09:18:23

mum2fergus hope your ok

Mum2Fergus Mon 11-Mar-13 10:18:11

Thank you...had better times hmm

MySonIsMyWorld Mon 11-Mar-13 12:42:40

Me too.... need to rant? Its been 4 weeks and 4 days since my ex went and had no contact from him since

Mum2Fergus Mon 11-Mar-13 13:04:46

Ex left us yesterday, promised to call round late afternoon to take DS out, then texted to say he couldnt manage (managed pub for the rugby mind!).

Stuck at home this morn,car wont start and crap weather to boot! I just cant get my head around his inability to prioritise whats important in life!

In general terms I know I'll be grand. I work, have a decent salary and have recently bought my first house...still, I wish things could be different!

MySonIsMyWorld Mon 11-Mar-13 13:13:36

least you have a salary coming in vhick and you got your own house. Your ex sounds like a nob, just like mine. chin up sweetie x

Vizzle Mon 11-Mar-13 13:56:06

Thanks, everyone! It's good to know that it can be done... I had a real up and down week, but just did what I could and concentrated on the kids. I had a rare night out, too, which helped.

And good luck Mum2Fergus x

MN044 Mon 11-Mar-13 14:02:26

The best thing is to be honest with everyone. I felt so ashamed when my xp left me (WHY??? I felt that way is anyone's guess, but I did. Alone with 3 dc is not ideal and I felt judged I suppose). People will honestly help out all they can, but they can't help if they don't know. realsitically, you'll probably be up and down for a while yet. OK one hour, desperately down the next. But this year will go so quickly. My xp walked out 9 months ago, which has just gone in a flash. One thing from your OP though. While there's a chance he could come back, you will not move on. I spent many many months thinking he'd change his mind and it kept me in limbo. Understandably your situation is different as there's substance abuse involved, but the only way I could properly move on was to accept, finally, that it was totally over. It hurt like hell, but I had to accept it. And don't make any drastic decisions til the smoke has cleared a bit. I upped and moved 300 miles away to try and make a clean break. Big mistake. Accept favours from everyone. And stand firm. You'll get through this you really will.

KellyElly Thu 14-Mar-13 16:08:10

I didn't do too well. Lots of crying, wine and generally feeling miserable even though the break up was my decision. However, after a few months, I started getting into a routine, making sure I kept busy and did stuff with DD, met up with friends and their kids and it started to get better. I was much happier alone than in the toxic relationship I had been in. The weekday evenings were quite hard for a long period of time as I felt quite lonely and as most of my friends worked and had kids themselves they couldn't be coming to see me all the time. Now, nearly two years on, I don't feel lonely at all when DD's in bed. This is just my experience. You may well find it a lot easier. My point is, no matter how hard you do find it, it will get better bit by bit smile

MySonIsMyWorld Thu 14-Mar-13 16:25:14

yeah it does get better slowly, ive come to realise how matter how much i cry or ask friends and family why it happened to me ex will not change or come back even though break up my was decision keeping busy is a life saver and it makes you so sleepy in the evenings you just hit your bed!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now