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6 Strategies to Strengthen Single Parent Families

Whether you’re a single parent by choice or by circumstance, being the primary caretaker of your children can be challenging.  Mighty Mommy has 6 strategies to make your life as a single parent easier and more fulfilling.

 

By
Cheryl Butler
July 22, 2013
Episode #240

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Mighty Mommy has family members and close friends that are single parents, but despite not having a two-parent household, they have found successful strategies that make their single parent families happy and strong.

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Here are 6 strategies that you can use to make your life as a single parent easier and more fulfilling:

Strategy #1: Get Organized

As a single parent, everything takes twice as long to prepare, enforce, and do.  If you weren’t organized in a two-parent household, take your new situation as an opportunity to make a fresh start in your life and get organized. Start with creating systems for planning your grocery shopping and meal preparation in advance, setting up bedtime, school, and chore routines, getting things ready for work and school the night before so you’re not frazzled getting out the door in the morning.  Getting organized takes time and discipline on your part, which is certainly not easy when you’re alone and perhaps struggling emotionally, but once you invest the time and energy into this very important part of your family’s life, you will benefit for years to come.

Strategy #2: Create a Support System

Busy parents are encouraged to find a network of friends and family that they can lean on when they need to carpool, find a babysitter in a pinch, or just vent and let off a little steam during one of those tough parenting days. But for single parents, having a strong support system is even more vital.  If you have any other single parent friends you can connect with, do so.  They can understand better than anyone the challenges you face doing things without a partner on a regular basis. 

If you don’t have a group of people you can rely on in case of an emergency, now is the time to start thinking about who can help you out if you're in a jam. For example, who would pick up your child from an after school activity if you're delayed at work?  Think about friends, grandparents and ex-inlaws, neighbors, coworkers, or people from your faith-based community that you could ask in advance.  If your child is old enough to understand that friends and family might need to help out occasionally, make sure he knows who is included in this network for his piece of mind as well.

Strategy #3: Pay Attention to your Health

Single parents tend to burn the candle at both ends because they have to do nearly everything for their families themselves.  It may sound simple enough but eating properly, getting enough exercise, rest and regular respite from your constant parental duties are imperative so that you can be alive and well to care for your family.  Another piece of advice from Mighty Mommy’s successful single parents is to keep up to date with your own doctor and dental check-ups.  Don’t put yourself last when it comes to preventive care—your family needs you!

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