As a kid, I always remembered having an odd love and fascination with bubbles floating in the air. The light way they travel on the wind and the smooth style they encase the air to fly further gave me the sensation that I could, one day, fly as well. I guess that’s why children swat their hands at bubbles, wanting to catch them so they can fly away with them, too. It’s an odd sensation but a welcome one that I find to still grip me as an adult. Which is why… I guess, I enjoy blogging so much!
As a blogger, I’ve had a good chance to talk and impart wisdom and encouragement to others. But, from what I’ve noticed, most people are still scared of speaking (writing) their mind. It takes guts and courage and most people feel like their additions and comments aren’t as worthwhile as those of others. Sometimes, it’s the fear of how they will be judged that stops them from writing. Which is why, I’ve decided that, anyone who seems to be capable of writing inspiring and encouraging works, I’d be more than glad to lend them some space on my blog! So… here’s my first Guest Scribbler!
From the Blogger of DadSolo.com
What I’ve Learned As A Single Dad
Being a single dad is maybe one of the most challenging, but rewarding, tasks I’ve ever faced. There are the obvious hurdles to jump: not having a partner to turn to when I’m having a bad day, doubting myself, finding ways to stretch one income to cover an entire family… this all on top of the general struggles of being a parent period.
And when it comes to being a single father, there are some unique challenges. Don’t get me wrong– I have several friends that are single mothers and they have a lot to deal with as well. I’m not saying the responsibility is more difficult for one gender than it is for the other. However, in my experience I think it’s safe to say there are differences.
Gender Inequity and Stigma
The reason single fathers and single mothers have different experiences is because of the systemic gender problems prevalent in our society. These problems are found across all industries, from Hollywood to your own workplace. Gender roles are deeply ingrained in our collective subconscious.
There are plenty of stigmas out there single mothers have to deal with that single fathers do not. For instance, there’s this idea that single mothers are all women who were knocked up as teenagers, lazy and living on welfare. The reality is most single mothers became the sole head of the household after being widowed, divorced, or separated from their partner. Many choose to be single moms as they want children, but haven’t found the right partner to settle down with yet. And any connection between welfare, crime, and single motherhood has more to do with poverty than it has to do with familial structure.
Single dads don’t face those same stigmas to the degree of single mothers. Think about it: nobody uses derogatory remarks if he has kids out of wedlock. Nobody worries if I’m a dad simply to get a check from the government. The challenges single fathers face often revolve around the idea that dads don’t have to be as involved in their children’s lives as a mother.
Single Dad Problems
- If you are a single father with an infant or toddler, you’ve almost definitely faced the changing table problem. In most private businesses, men’s rooms do not come equipped with areas where you can change your child’s diaper.
- Balancing your career and home life is a struggle. Men are expected to put their careers before their family while women are pressured to do the opposite. However, as a single father that is not an option. If you feel like your job is being unfair with its demands, speak to your human resources representative.
- Men are more likely than women to use illicit drugs and abuse alcohol. You may be tempted to turn to these things in order to cope with the stresses of being a single parent. It’s important to find healthy ways to cope with stress. Give yourself a break when you need it and don’t be afraid to ask for help with the kids from loved ones or hired help. Remember the big picture and all the enjoyment you get from your family. Practice self-care in constructive ways: go for a run, read a book, or treat yourself to a favorite meal. It’s all about giving you something to look forward to and not getting bogged down in the nitty gritty.
Single parenthood is not exactly a walk in the park. Balancing your family’s resources while dealing with parenting responsibilities on your own is a challenge in its own right. However, the struggles don’t stop there. Gender biases in our society place different expectations on single mothers and fathers. Dads don’t have to deal with the same stigmas as single moms, but there are unique issues they must face. Lack of amenities, career expectations, and challenges with substance abuse are among the hardest challenges a single father will face.
Featured Photo is from Pixabay