Anyone else single or solo parenting? - Mothering Forums

 
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#1 of 14 Old 02-09-2010, 07:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm a single parent by choice, I'll be the baby's papa, and the known donor is the spuncle, or Super Uncle.

I also live alone, so I'm running into a few things already with being completely exhausted and just wanting someone else to cook for me, so for me, that means going out, or picking up takeout, or begging a friend to feed me.

Anyone else?

SPBC Finally a Papa! Elise Ember Soleil - 10/3/10 - 4:09 AM - 6 lbs 8 oz My daughter eats donor milk! Human milk for human babies!
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#2 of 14 Old 03-01-2010, 02:55 AM
 
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hugs mama....its rought to be alone! i'm married, so i don't pretend to know what its like for you...but dh works evenings so i'm parenting the 2 littles alone every night and i hear ya on too tired to cook and getting take out :grin

amanda... lovin' my dh since 2004 and mama to dd (3), ds (18 months) and expecting someone new Oct 2010.
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#3 of 14 Old 03-01-2010, 08:19 AM
 
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I'm not single parenting this time around, but I did with ds. I didn't start dating dh until ds was around 18 months - before that I was on my own and going through a divorce. So yeah, I totally understand.

I had wonderful family support - my best advice is to build your support system and don't be afraid to use them. Let your friends cook for you, etc. You will need them even more after your LO arrives.

But most of all, you can do it and you will be just fine! Sure, it's harder than if you've got an involved, supportive partner right there to help. But it's totally do-able.

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#4 of 14 Old 03-01-2010, 04:28 PM
 
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I don't know yet what's going to happen with my partner. Not knowing whether or not I need to think like a single parent makes it very hard to plan. My partner is married to someone else, separated for a long time, but doesn't want to get divorced. I don't know what to think.
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#5 of 14 Old 03-01-2010, 10:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, that sounds tricky!

I am grateful for the folks I have to help me out - one of my exes called today and said "I'm serious, I really will clean your fridge!" And I picked him up, he fed me a wonderful lunch, and then he walked my dogs with me and cleaned my fridge.

Truly, awesome.

And he's not the only one. I got into this whole single parent by choice thing because I decided I'd rather have a dozen friends who are 100% on board than have one partner who isn't. It's really working so far....nine weeks down, eighteen years to go!

SPBC Finally a Papa! Elise Ember Soleil - 10/3/10 - 4:09 AM - 6 lbs 8 oz My daughter eats donor milk! Human milk for human babies!
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#6 of 14 Old 03-01-2010, 10:41 PM
 
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...I decided I'd rather have a dozen friends who are 100% on board than have one partner who isn't.
I am SO with you on that! I'm glad you have such a great support network!
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#7 of 14 Old 03-01-2010, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by FtMPapa View Post
I'll be the baby's papa
I have the dumbest question ever but what do you mean by "papa"? I remember you saying that in another thread and I don't think I can make it until October without asking.
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#8 of 14 Old 03-01-2010, 11:09 PM
 
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I have the dumbest question ever but what do you mean by "papa"? I remember you saying that in another thread and I don't think I can make it until October without asking.
i had the same question lol

but yeah, single momma here too... i have a bf, but... you know how things go.....

"Damn it man, I'm a doctor, not a physicist!" -Bones McCoy. Ds1 6 bouncy.gif Dd1 4 energy.gifDd2 5 months baby.gif
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#9 of 14 Old 03-01-2010, 11:23 PM
 
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Not pregnant here, but I saw this thread from the "New Posts" page. I was 10 weeks pregnant when I became a single parent, and have been so ever since. Yes, it is hard. My pregnancy was exhausting, and my cat ended up actually being diagnosed with Toxoplasmosis (the reason you shouldn't change litter boxes when pregnant). I just had to suck it up and put gloves on and a mask and change the litter box, and get my blood drawn once a month (baby and I were fine and never got Toxo).

It can be soooooooooooooooooooo hard when you are just dead tired, craving something more than life itself, throwing up from morning sickness and knowing that you HAVE to go to work in the morning, etc, etc, etc, etc.

The up side is that you can not only do this, but you will come out on the other side as the strongest parent ever. You will prove to yourself and to your babe that this is something that can not only be done, but done with confidence and huge amounts of love. You will learn that you are capable of things that you never dreamed of. You will be pushed and tested beyond anything you ever expected, but you will also experience a love greater than anything you have ever experienced.

Being a single parent allows you to make Every Single Teeny Tiny Decision about your child. You get to choose the name, the way in which you birth, the way in which you choose to raise your baby, and on and on and on and on. You will never have to disagree with another parent (unless you are partnered in the future). You will be there for all of the milestones. You will be the one every single night to see the snuggles and smiles and you will be the only person in the world to make that baby's face light up in a million watt grin when you walk in the room. You won't have to share that with anyone else.

You are going to make a great papa, and you can do it!

Congratulations!

Formerly single Mama to the zaniest boy on the block, born on my birthday on 3/28/07. Soon to be Mama to a new little and can't wait to bfinfant.gif and femalesling.GIF and familybed1.gif again! 
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#10 of 14 Old 03-02-2010, 12:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have the dumbest question ever but what do you mean by "papa"? I remember you saying that in another thread and I don't think I can make it until October without asking.
Isn't that what the Spotlight thread is for?

Kidding, kidding. It's not a dumb question, I am unusual though not extraordinary, as someone recently described me.

I'm transgender, so while I am the pregnant one in this queer little family, I am seen as male by most of the world, and I see myself as a papa rather than a mama.

So, yeah, I'm going to birth this baby, and I worked like crazy to get pregnant, but I am going to be Papa to my kid. My kid will know that hir Papa is unusual, and that in most families it's the Mamas who have the babies, but my kid will also grow up knowing other kids whose Papas or Babas or Abbas or Fathers or Dads or whatever gave birth to them.

Pumkin-Pie - thanks for weighing in. My first fertility doc was like "Single parent? You said you have cats?" and tested me, luckily I was already positive for toxo before I started. It was a huge relief to me, I can only imagine how hard that must have been for you. I've been lucky, so far. I joke that I earned an easy pregnancy and birth since it took me three years and so much high-tech intervention to conceived, and while I know it doesn't work that way, I feel like it really is my just desserts now. Other than being really tired (but also having the flexibility to completely rearrange my schedule to allow me to nap most afternoons) I haven't had anything to complain about so far. Nothing. And yeah, I don't have someone to go out in the middle of the night to get me chicken McNuggets, but it prompted me to make my own chicken WICnugget recipe with WIC-made yogurt and WIC-Special K, and they were much yummier.

When I look at my friends who are parenting "with" partners, I don't really see the "with" I see a lot of complaints about the other parent, I see a lot of trouble negotiating things, not always, obviously, but with most of the two parent families I know there is a significant amount of back-and-forth. I am so glad I won't have any of this.

SPBC Finally a Papa! Elise Ember Soleil - 10/3/10 - 4:09 AM - 6 lbs 8 oz My daughter eats donor milk! Human milk for human babies!
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#11 of 14 Old 03-28-2010, 05:56 AM
 
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Will you be telling your child that you gave birth to him? like once he gets older?

Good luck with everything.

Mom to the best 4 little men ever! chicken3.gif
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#12 of 14 Old 03-28-2010, 11:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Will you be telling your child that you gave birth to him? like once he gets older?
Yes and no. I don't believe until waiting until kids are "older" to tell them things.

I think it's really important that kids know some things about themselves and the world always, so they're not looking back and thinking about "Before" and "After" they knew.

I think this applies to a lot of things that people wait until the kid is "old enough" to understand - sex, gender, adoption, conception and birth stories...that kind of thing.

This can happen in an age appropriate way, too. For instance, around the age of 2-3 when kids are getting younger siblings, they are beginning to be told "the baby is in Mama's belly" and that's a fine way to explain to a kid "Most kids grow in their Mamas' bellies, but you grew in your Papa's belly." or "Most kids grow in their Mamas' bellies, but you grew in your first Mama's belly, and then you found us when you were three days old" or whatever the story is.

So, yeah, my kid will know right from the start that I birthed hir. I'm sure hir understanding of that will change and evolve over the years, like any kids' understanding of hir origins do.

SPBC Finally a Papa! Elise Ember Soleil - 10/3/10 - 4:09 AM - 6 lbs 8 oz My daughter eats donor milk! Human milk for human babies!
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#13 of 14 Old 03-28-2010, 12:01 PM
 
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~DDC crashing~

Papa! OMG, congratulations! I am so very happy for you!

I have to second much of what PumpkinPie said. I started this journey alone and now, with Iris two years old, am still doing it on my own. I think it's great that you are leaning on your friends *now*. For too long, I had the "I'm a strong, independent, fierce mama who can do any damn thing by myself" mindset. While true (and like Pumpkin said, you'll find strength you didn't even know you had), what that mindset really bought me was a helluva lot more exhaustion and frustration than I needed. Just because I *could* do something for/by myself didn't mean I should. And ultimately, to an extent, Iris suffers when I suffer. She was past her first birthday before I took one of my friends up on the many offers to watch her so I could go out and do something just for me, and after that two hour break, I realized how much I had needed it. And she needed it, too! With hindsight, I realize a lot of things could have been easier if I had gotten into the habit of accepting favors much earlier. I was the crazy eight-months-pregnant lady out there mowing the lawn. Which is fine, but I had people offering to do it for me!

I also found that many of my friends surprised me after the birth. Some who I expected to be huge supporters...weren't. But others who I didn't expect more than an obligatory congrats from turned out to be heavily interested and involved. And I found a huge, wonderful local network of AP folks who are now my biggest support of all.

There is also much to be said to be starting out this way, rather than suddenly finding yourself a single parent when you hadn't planned it that way, as many of these mamas can attest to. If I ever find myself partnered again, it'll be so odd to find myself with that kind of immediate support available.

FWIW, I like your easy pregnancy/birth theory. I had a similar one, though my TTC journey wasn't quite as long or complicated as yours. It was true for me, too. Besides exhaustion, my pregnancy was a dream (besides having to glove/mask up for the cat boxes since I was toxo-negative after a lifetime of gardening and cat ownership ). And my birth, well...I wish I could relive it over and over again. I hope the same is true for you!

Lynn, single lesbian mama to All Mighty Iris 12/10/07
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#14 of 14 Old 03-28-2010, 12:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hey Lynn! Wow..time flies! I can't believe your littles is TWO!

I have a really awesome solo parent by choice friend, and I see her doing SUPER MAMA. I try to obnoxiously push my help on her as much as possible, but I can't do as much as I wish.

I've made it my motto that if anyone offers help, I take it, but with mixed results so far. But my foodie ex (the guy I came camping with) cleaned my fridge a few weeks ago - he offered, and I took him up on it, and it was great.

And I hired someone to clean my house, and I have to call her to come back and do it again, since I really can't seem to clean anything, and with two dogs, two cats, and me, it gets dirty fast. Disgustingly fast.

So, yeah, learning to lean on other people is my challenge this pregnancy. I figure it's a skill I'll need, and I'm working on it now. I am also figuring out, fast, who the people are who are my friends and who isn't. Like the person who hasn't called me - except to ask for help that I couldn't offer - since I got pregnant. And the people who keep telling me how they're there for me, but um, Ok, where is that exactly? I haven't heard from you in two months or more!

SPBC Finally a Papa! Elise Ember Soleil - 10/3/10 - 4:09 AM - 6 lbs 8 oz My daughter eats donor milk! Human milk for human babies!
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