Last Updated on September 1, 2023 by Lori Pace
Being a single mom has become the new normal for families all over the US. And there is a lot of information on the negatives of being the children of a single parent.
But what about the positives?
Yes, being a single mom can also positively affect your children. It can even be advantageous for your children to raise them as single moms.
Your children might become more mature and resilient than children from a two-parent home.
What does it mean to be children of a single parent?
It used to be that when we thought of families, we would picture a mom, a dad, and the children.
Today, all that has changed. Children all over the US live in more unconventional and diverse homes.
According to Statista, there are 19 million single-parent homes in the US. Single moms run more than 15 million of those homes.
Many of these single moms raise their children without the help of their children’s fathers. Therefore, they often have to raise their children on a shoestring budget.
There are plenty of reasons why there might be a single mom, such as being a widow. The other parent might be working far away, or it simply might have been their choice to be a single mom.
What are the positive effects of being a single mom?
1. Stronger mother-child bond
As a single mom, you don’t get to spend a lot with your children. So, the time you spend together becomes even more precious and meaningful.
This time will create a stronger and unique bond that children of two-parent homes might not have with their parents.
It doesn’t matter if you have full custody of parents or even a parent who only sees their children every other weekend and the holidays.
Also, you will still be able to bond with your children even after they turn 18!
2. Strong Sense Of Community
As a single mom raising children, it can be easy to feel alone and overwhelmed.
And, sadly, in many cases, this can be all too true.
But more often than not, there is support for single moms and their children. Single moms can join support groups and community groups.
Children also have their support system from extended family remembers and even teachers from their school.
3. Children will become mature & responsible
Children to take care of age-appropriate chores will learn about the importance of taking responsibility. This is because their chores will be a REAL contribution to the running of the household.
They will see that their help is needed, and they will take pride in their work.
Also, studies show that children who complete household chores have a bigger chance of becoming happy, more successful adults. Your children will also benefit from seeing firsthand all the hard work you do to put food on the table and pay the bills.
They will also have to find ways to work with you and your schedule, leading to early lessons about compromise and collaboration with others.
Finally, they will learn how to deal with disappointments and overcome challenges from a young age.
4. You can become a hero to your children
As a single parent, you will become a role model to your children.
You will be able to teach them by example. Your children will see how important you are in their lives.
You will also teach them about consideration and empathy for other people.
They will learn the value of hard work from watching you work and deal with your responsibilities.
Among other lessons, you will teach your children how to juggle responsibilities and find unique ways to overcome challenges in their lives.
What are the negative effects on children of a single parent?
1. Adjusting after losing a parent
A divorce is a painful experience for any couple, even when it’s an amicable ending. It doesn’t just take its toll on the parents and the children.
Children become even more vulnerable to arguments and fights between their parents. They could see it as losing a protector and a mentor.
Children of divorced single moms may have trouble adjusting to their new life. Often they will feel ashamed or feel singled out because they have a different family from their classmates.
Sadly, there are also cases in a divorce where the fathers (and sometimes mothers) refuse to raise children.
Family feuds could lead to children being resentful of their new life and, in some cases, their parents.
2. Not being able to be the best mom you can be
As a single mom, you have to juggle many daily responsibilities.
You have to take care of the house and your children. And you have to do all this around a hectic work schedule!
Because you’re trying to be a Jack (or rather, Jill) of all trades, there might be times when you have to say no to your children.
Even worse, you might not be able to give your children all the opportunities they’ve dreamed of because of money woes.
3. Low self-esteem
Children raised in single-parent homes can suffer from low self-esteem and low confidence. Being a single mom with a busy schedule, you might not be able to give them the love and attention they need.
Your children might start comparing their single mom homes to the lives of children who come from a two-parent home.
Your children might feel the need to take responsibility for their home life.
Low self-esteem in children could lead to them having unhealthy romantic relationships. They could have lowered their expectations or expect too much attention from their spouse.
4. Money Troubles
As a single mom, you have to carry the financial responsibility on your own two shoulders. You may have to raise and feed your children on a shoestring budget.
Lack of income can lead to you having the tough decision to say no to your children and not give them the opportunities they need to reach their dreams.
What can you do to help your children?
Love your children unconditionally
Love is one of the most important things you can do for your children.
Even in single-parent homes, children need love and affection from their parents. And there are plenty of ways to show your children.
Make the most of the time you get to spend together. Enjoy the little moments singing “Beauty and the Beast” on the drive to school and talking to them during dinnertime.
Do they have a favorite movie book or toy? Did they recently get an A on a test or receive an award at school? Did they win a football or soccer match?
Praise your children for their achievements.
Setting rules and boundaries
When you don’t have any support, you have to set firm boundaries with your children. One of the best ways to do this is to use a low voice to communicate with your children.
Praising your child is another great way to reinforce positive behavior.
When your child misbehaves, you could consider taking away their privileges, such as taking TV privileges or grounding them.
Be honest with your children
It’s crucial to honest with your children when they ask you questions, especially about why the other parent isn’t with them anymore.
Also, be supportive of and open with your children when dealing with difficult situations and confusing emotions.
Don’t be crippled by guilt
As a single mom, it can be easy to feel guilty.
You might be worried that you’re not doing enough for your children or even for getting divorced. However, you could join a support group or go to counseling to deal with any guilt that you may have.
It’s essential for both you and your children not to be weighed down by guilt and stay positive.
Keep calm and stay positive
Staying positive will not only be good for yourself, but it will also be a good thing for your children. Children can see everything you do, and they hear everything you say.
Suppose your children see you constantly tired and miserable. In that case, they will soon start to copy your behavior like little parrots.
Therefore, it’s crucial to try hard to be positive as you can be in front of your children. One of the best ways to keep positive is to keep reminding yourself about all the things you have accomplished.
Even the little things. ESPECIALLY the little things that you’ve accomplished.
Another way to stay positive is to take care of yourself. Enough rest and regular exercise won’t just be good for you but also your children.