The goal was to live happily ever after. If someone had told you a few years ago that you would have ended up divorced with kids, you would have laughed. Yet, here you are, finalizing the paperwork and starting life as a single mom. Whether the split was one-sided, unexpected, or amicable, you’re still dealing with your emotions while trying to support your kids as you create a “new normal.” Although it seems overwhelming, stay encouraged.
Many women have been where you are and have learned how to overcome the divorce and hardships of single parenting. Of course, it won’t happen overnight, nor will it be easy, but you can make it to the other side. Continue reading for advice.
Close That Chapter
Think of your life as a good book. Each chapter (good or bad) gives you more insight into the main character and their experiences. If you remain stuck on one chapter too long, you miss the happy ending. Your divorce was nothing more than a chapter in your book, and since you’re the author of this story, you dictate how it ends.
Make peace with the ending of your marriage. Identify your strengths and weaknesses and learn the lessons you can from the experience. Use this “research” as a source to create better stories going forward. Then, close the chapter.
Ask For Help
While your ex may still assist with raising the kids, it’s not the same. Whether you’re the sole caretaker, you share custody, or your children live with your ex-spouse, it’s an adjustment that takes some getting used to. Managing your emotions and keeping up with your parental obligations alone isn’t feasible. You need help, and there’s no shame in admitting that.
Help may come in the form of your friends and family pitching in to assist with everyday tasks like school, household chores, meal prep, or homework. Asking for help might mean turning to your religious community for financial, emotional, and spiritual guidance. For women that resorted to abusing drugs and alcohol to numb the pain, getting help may mean searching for an “addiction treatment center near me.”
When you’ve been in a long-term relationship, it’s easy to lose your identity to your family. Now that you’re on your own, you have no idea who you are, what you like, or even what your purpose is in life. It’s time to rediscover yourself. Ultimately, you can be there for your kids and master single parenthood when you know and love yourself.
Spend time thinking about your core values, beliefs, and interests. What are some things you enjoy or want to accomplish in life? What makes you feel good about yourself? Take yourself out on dates, write in journals, recite affirmations, create new goals, and invest time and energy in doing things that bring you happiness.
One Day At A Time
There’s no timeline on when a woman should get over a divorce and adjust to single parenting. However, society doesn’t leave much room for error. You’re expected to suck it up, bounce back, and take on the world while looking and feeling your best. The reality is, everyone is different. As long as you’re taking strides towards improving, you’re going in the right direction.
Take it one day at a time. Celebrate the milestones and learn from your mistakes. Track your progress and remind yourself that you’ve come a long way. With each passing day, you’ll find it’s a lot easier to get where you want to be for yourself and your kids.
Even if it was for the best, going through a divorce is emotionally taxing. If you succumb to the pressures, it will hinder your ability to move forward and be a successful single mom. You have the rest of your life ahead of you, and your kids need you to be the best version of yourself. So, do the work using suggestions like those listed above to move past this temporary disappointment to better days.