What's your reply to 'I feel like a single mum'

(156 Posts)
Steamgirl Sun 20-Nov-16 21:46:50

I dont need to spell it out here; it's a well documented gripe.

But how do you actually reply? I often get it from mums in the playgound whos husbands work long hours or work away from home. I usually just reply with a question about their day because in a way they are trying to be nice and express some common ground and vent some frustration to the juggling that is being a parent.

My fantasy response is to pause just slightly too long before saying 'maybe so, but you'd need to walk a mile in my shoes before you know how it feels to raise your children alone'

YoScienceBitch Sun 20-Nov-16 21:50:14

I just nod and continue the conversation. Don't see why it's an issue?

TheGruffaloMother Sun 20-Nov-16 21:52:47

My general reply is that I actually find being a single parent easier because I don't have expectations of a partner/coparent that don't get met. But I suppose that reply doesn't work if you're not a single mum yourself!

228agreenend Sun 20-Nov-16 21:54:51

I've seen a few threads on mumsent over the years on this subject which usually end in a blood bath.

I think the point of the comment is that their DH is away so much that they effectively are raising their children alone.

There are some married mums who get little support, from dh and/or family, and are effectively are doing everythimg themselves. There are also single parents who get a lot of help from their parents and friends.

There are married mums who live in stressful relationships and are unhappy, and single mums who are single and are happy.

There is not one situation which is necessity better or worse than the other.

clumsyduck Sun 20-Nov-16 22:00:14

gruffalo that's what I used to say (have dp now) because in that regard I did prefer being alone especially when hearing about all the useless dh who do sod all anyway !

It's a tough one because being at home all day and having a dh come home and do bath time or a night feed etc although still tiring is really not the same as doing literally everything yourself so I can see why people get mad however some men are Massivley unhelpful and lazy and really it wouldn't be much different if they weren't there . The financial side of doing it all though a whole different ball game obviously

Steamgirl Sun 20-Nov-16 22:01:26

228 I think youre right. Im pretty happy most of the time, though I do feel exhausted and lonely at times. I'm struggling to think of an occasion when I might open a sentence with 'I feel like I'm a married mum' though.

elephantoverthehill Sun 20-Nov-16 22:06:43

I'm a single mum and I am so proud of how my DC's are helpful and independent. That might be something to reply.

Steamgirl Sun 20-Nov-16 22:09:07

I like that one elephant, its true. Today Ive been poorly and my 11 year old was very proud to cook tea, but not as proud as I was.

megletthesecond Sun 20-Nov-16 22:15:17

I don't. I'd only get snippy if I said something. Least said, soonest mended and all that.

whirlygirly Sun 20-Nov-16 22:15:17

I've been a single mum for years now and to be fair, it's actually easier than doing everything for a bloke who won't pitch in as well.
I can't imagine sharing things equally - I've never had it so don't really know what I'm missing. There's a depressing thought! confused

IamHappy1976 Sun 20-Nov-16 22:16:45

Have to agree with previous posters! My married friends envy my every other weekend off! It can be mad and frantic and then every second Saturday morning I wake up AT MY OWN TIME :-) I know very few married women who do that :-(
My reply to the original question is, some you win, some you lose!

ikeawrappingpaper Sun 20-Nov-16 22:21:05

Personally, as a newly single mum who used to feel like a single mum to DC and exp, it's a hell of a lot easier for me to actually be one and only have actual children to deal with. Appreciate that is not the case for all though.

Scrumptiousbears Sun 20-Nov-16 22:22:30

Isn't it just a saying though? I have said this myself. I have also said I was so knackered I felt like I'd run a marathon which I never have.

Steamgirl Sun 20-Nov-16 22:23:11

Unfortunately my ex sees my DC one or two Saturdays a month. He's not very involved. So no, I dont get any regular time off. But my DC do make their own breakfast and feed the cat 😀 on the Saturday's they are with me!

Steamgirl Sun 20-Nov-16 22:34:28

Laughing ... Scrumptious bears ... I have a friend who runs marathons and I'm definitely going to say that to them next time they've run one!

whatminniedidnext Sun 20-Nov-16 22:47:56

As someone who is a newly single mum, I wouldn't bat an eyelid to these comments. Why? Because actually I was a single mum from the start - with a whole lot of added stress too. My ex was abusive and also rarely helped with the DC, when he was home it was all about his needs and what he wanted to do.

Ultimately when women who have partners say "I feel like a single mum", I wouldn't get annoyed as you don't know what their relationship is like. I'd bet that a lot of women who come out with comments like this are at best frustrated with their current setup / lack of support, at worst they are deeply unhappy.

pieceofpurplesky Sun 20-Nov-16 22:52:35

Just smile. I do sometimes add that I miss having two incomes!

KarmaNoMore Sun 20-Nov-16 22:58:32

I point out that while he is paying the bills, the nanny, the school, the lunch she is having and returning at the end of the trip, she is not a single parent.

Potatoooooo Sun 20-Nov-16 23:02:21

My husband works away for 80% of the year, I literally feel like a single parent.

So would you roll your eyes at me for saying that? Given the fact that, for 10 months out of the year, I raise my daughter alone?

KarmaNoMore Sun 20-Nov-16 23:03:43

Yes, so did my ex but that doesn't make you "literally" a single parent. So yes, I would roll up my eyes at you saying that wink

Potatoooooo Sun 20-Nov-16 23:04:35

I didn't say it made me one, I said it literally made me feel like one.

KarmaNoMore Sun 20-Nov-16 23:04:51

If he is still helping with the bills, you are NOT a single parent.

Potatoooooo Sun 20-Nov-16 23:05:45

I appreciate that I'm not a single parent. I'm in a relationship. But I do raise my child alone for the best part of the year. Can you see where I'm coming from?

KarmaNoMore Sun 20-Nov-16 23:10:07

Yes, I can see it, but the main problem faced by a single parent is to raise a child in a single income and all the stress that comes with it. As I said, I had a husband that spent plenty of time away, so as you, I was used to raise my child on my own. But it really pulls the rug under your feet to carry out the whole financial burden on your very own. That's the big difference.

Potatoooooo Sun 20-Nov-16 23:11:13

We do have a single income. Would that make me more of a single parent?

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