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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi.<br>
Perhaps this has been addressed in previous posts....?<br><br>
My sister is pg - suddenly thrust into the world of being a single parent since she was not TTC. She hears lots of stories from single parents, but most are divorced, and didn't go through pgcy/labor & delivery solo, or live alone with a newborn. I was hoping to hear some experiences to share with her....<br><br>
Anyone start out pg and single?<br>
How involved or not is the bio father?<br>
Any tips for NYS law?<br>
Things that were helpful? Ideas that you might have done differently?<br><br>
Thank you!
 

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With my dd, I was not TTC. When I told the BF about the pregnancy- he skipped for the duration. I had a very difficult pregnancy which I basically went through alone (my ds and mom helped me a lot! but no partner). I also delivered her (by section unfortunately) alone with only the L&D staff to help. It was not easy and incredibly emotionally difficult. The BF did stay in some sort of contact during the pg but never offered any help or implied that he'd be at the delivery. He also got engaged while I was laid up and married shortly after I had dd.<br><br>
So after dd was born, he was somewhat involved and we had a short battle (not in court) over custody- he was always threatening to get custody of the baby and take her from me. Things have gotten much better and now we get along just enough for dd. He sees her about 2x a month and pays CS.<br><br>
I don't think I would have done anything differently- except maybe never answered his phone calls while I was pg!<br><br>
Oh- and I gave dd my last name. I know I'll always be there and he was so uninterested in the pregnancy that I didn't know what kind of father he'd be.
 

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I left my dd's father when I was about 4/5 months along. The relationship was too stressful for me while feeling all of those pregnancy hormones. Dd's father was off and on with his involvement and two years ago, when dd had just turned 4yo, he cut off all his involvement. I have never asked for child support (My personal choice).<br><br>
Something I wish I had known or thought thought less about when I was pregnant and single. I wish I had thought less about stuff. I watched in the past as married family and friends had children and all the stuff they would buy. I felt like I wasn't keeping up with the needs of my baby by not buying all the stuff. Turns out I didn't need half the stuff I had. But I think then I thought about it because I felt like I was providing my child with less than because I was doing it alone. I don't feel like that any longer.<br><br>
I gave my dd my last name. The father agreed and never fought this because dd was going to be living with me full time and he wanted our names to be the same. I could always change it later if I changed my mind, and if my dd had been a boy I might have given her his last name to carry it on. I have heard many of the other single Mother's here regret their choice to give their dc their ex's names when they were born. It's something for her to think about.<br><br>
I didn't live alone when I had dd, I moved in with my parents to save money. But I did care for her exclusively. Caring for a newborn by yourself is exhausting, but truly rewarding. Offer to help your sister as much as you can. Give her a moment to go to the store herself, or just get a haircut alone. It will help her recharge so she can be the best she can be.<br><br>
Lastly invite her to join us here. I can't tell you how blessed my mothering has been by this forum and all of these beautiful women. It really helps to have people who understand and support you when your low. It helps to have those to brag to about this or that when you sometimes feel sheltered or alone.
 

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For me, I was alone even though I technically had someone. We were together, but for reasons that shall remain unnamed, he had to move out. Anyhow, I came home from the hospital with my granny and stayed with her so that she could take care of me while I recovered. It was nice. It really was.<br><br>
Then, I returned home to an empty house save for us and the animals. He was there and I was here. After some time passed, he came back, but it was horrible. The abuse got into full swing and our relationship began its decent.<br><br>
I felt alone even when he was here because he didn't share any of the household duties or parenting type stuff with me. I was always a single mama, even when my roommate <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> was here.
 

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I am a SMC (single mama by choice) so my situation is a bit different from your sister's, but I can sympathize with her not having much in common with many of the moms on most "single parents" boards. I rarely post on these boards since I have nothing to contribute to the majority of the conversations.<br><br>
I certainly did not go through pregnancy and labor solo!! I had my mom with me every step of the way, plus many wonderful friends. If your sister doesn't have much of a support network, now is the time for her to start building one. I agree w/the pp that she should join MDC and check the FYT section to find other mamas in her area. Learning how to ask for and accept help is SO important when you are going to be a parent, and especially a single parent.<br><br>
Being single and pg or single with a newborn isn't easy, but it has plusses as well as minuses. I wish your sister much luck with her journey.<br><br>
-Joan
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you each for taking the time to write & share a tiny piece of what I imagine to be incredible stories. I think there is much for her to learn at MDC and have sent her appropriate thread links before.....I will be sharing this one with her too.<br><br>
Yes, her child will have her last name. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"> And excellent point about feeling the need to have "stuff" and keep up with the Jones'. We all could benefit from that reminder! I have asked her about custody and CS but she is unsure of the details.....<br><br>
...Anyone have experience with health insurance for single mom with child? (Doesn't fall into low income earner category....)<br><br>
Unfortunately she lives about 5 hrs from me & our mother. (<span style="font-size:small;">We are wishing with all our might that she chooses to relocate!</span> <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/loveeyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Loveeyes">: ) She has a midwife already and plans a homebirth....I am so excited for her - and hope to be very nearby when that baby is born! My DH & I have invited her to stay with us & our 2 boys for a while after delivery...she said she wants to, so we are keeping our fingers crossed that she does. I want to be as involved as I can be.<br><br>
Anyhow - thanks again for sharing and <i>please</i>...more thoughts, feedback or stories are warmly welcomed. I will encourage my sister to join and post here - despite her time online being brief most days.
 

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I agree about the importance of support. It's so important to have that in place as a single parent.<br><br>
I had the most incredible birth experience with my second and I was then a single mom. I had these amazing women surrounding me, holding me up physically and emotionally and birthing my baby in a room of love and support and the most incredible women ever. Even almost 5 years later, it's still extremely powerful for me to have that vision in my mind.<br><br>
Food is always helpful too. The more one portion meals she has frozen in her freezer the better. It's hard to remember to eat...but defrosting a healthy lasagna or something is really easy to eat and clean up...so she can focus on rest, sleep and baby.
 

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didn't you say she was in NY. I don't know about income guidlines, but Child Health Plus is an excellent program for kids. It will completely cover the pregnancy, and one year medical after the child is born. She may not qualify for insurrance fro herself, but I think child health plus is for any child, even invitro
 

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I left my DD's father before I knew I was pregnant, and apart from a handful of visits from him, we have done this totally alone.<br>
My biggest statement that I make when people comment it is hard to be a single parent: "Maybe it is, but it is the only way I KNOW to parent, so it isn't any harder for me than anyone else."<br>
Some things that have made my single mum role easier:<br>
Having a support group (family and friends) to talk to, for the adult interaction<br>
People dropping by suddenly with a sweet treat and making a cuppa. When this happens, it feels like they have handed me a million dollars.<br>
Playgroup is a resource that she could love. A social activity, and support group, for both her and bubs.<br>
I know as a single mum, I can feel very guilty at times getting my daughter baby sat, as her father should be there to do it. Therefore, I rarely ever go out, and have a life for myself. (Hence why I have dated 1 person since her birth, and that was only for a couple of months!) Offer her babysitting, make sure she understands that you would LOVE to babysit, and that it gives you a chance to bond with her child, rather than it being something that you are doing to help her out. This will ease her guilt (if she feels it)
 

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My son's father was not in the picture from 9 weeks pregnant till my son was 11 months old. Now, he has a lot of custody and is a good parent to my son, but it was just us for that first year (I got married when he was a year old). It was hard emotionally, but I liked some aspects of being a single parent. I could parent the way I felt was right without having to justify it or "convince" my partner that it was correct. I could focus on my baby, not keeping a relationship going with a baby. I had very little money, but found some really nice things at Goodwill. Give her hugs for me.
 

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I started out single and remain so. DD dad and I split before I found out I was pregnant. I have full custody and he is welcome to visit-he has never called and stopped by to visit once. Having lots of support via family, friends, etc. is essential. I don't think I would have done anything differently and we doing great just the two of us.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thank you, thank you!<br><br>
I talked w/her tonight & she'll come by this link soon. She seemed pleased to hear that there are others with whom she will likely relate.
 

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and not doing a very good job at it. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/guilty.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="guilty"><br><br>
I'm due anytime now (12/6/06 they say, but I know the baby's coming earlier... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"> ), and I'm doing it alone too.<br>
lol, this is NOT how I imagined things working out! I've felt like I was the only one going through this, even though I *knew* better. It's really good to hear about other mamas in similar situations. I don't get online much anymore, but I feel I was meant to read this thread today.<br><br>
'Baby's daddy' is in jail right now (drugs- I was in the dark- NO idea), and hasn't been around since I was 3 mo preg. I will not let him be involved until he's out and clean for a significant amount of time- if ever... My family is around, but they don't have a clue what it's like. They are not very 'crunchy-friendly' either. (Oh yeah, my mom was diagnosed with Stage 2 Breast Cancer this summer too.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/ribbonpink.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="breast cancer">: ) My closest friends have recently ALL (not kidding!) moved out of state, or have stopped speaking to me because of this mess.<br><br>
Quite frankly, this sucks!<br><br>
One of the things that scares me most at this point is the idea of 'living alone with a newborn'...<br><br>
But, I know we all just gotta do what we gotta do...
 

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Anyone start out pg and single?<br><span style="color:#FF0000;">I've been single from about 7 weeks pg on.</span><br><br>
How involved or not is the bio father?<br><span style="color:#FF0000;">Not at all. He heard about it and panicked. I "keep tabs" on him b/c we have the same friends and they tell me stuff. The more I hear, the happier I am that he isn't involved.</span><br><br>
Things that were helpful? Ideas that you might have done differently?<br><span style="color:#FF0000;">Embrace your power. Think about "all the stuff you can't afford to get" and then think about the thousands of years that babies and mamas have done without it. I moved to another city in my 8 month, so I had no support network, locally. But I kept in contact w/ my closest friends, my parents and got to know my co-workers really well.<br><br>
Do not be afraid to ask for help. Do not hesitate to request assistance. Always look for alternatives.<br><br>
Just remember that technically, taking care of babies the first six months is free. (I know, not really, but w/ bfing and using ec or cds, it's a lot closer then most people can imagine.</span><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mamaD</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/6544480"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">One of the things that scares me most at this point is the idea of 'living alone with a newborn'...<br><br>
But, I know we all just gotta do what we gotta do...</div>
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Ya know, that was the only thing that never freaked me out. Just think, you get to give all the hugs and kisses. You never have to worry about how anyone else takes care of the baby. No one will sit there and nag at you about how you parent. And when s/he gets old enough to start showing the love, guess who gets it? Oh, yeah, mama gets it! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/loveeyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Loveeyes">:<br><br>
I bf, cosleep, cd and delay solids (going w/ the baby-led, no puree). I think that my life is pretty smooth with the baby. We have a morning and evening routine, but neither of us gets too upset if it doesn't work that way all the time. We spend most of our time together just enjoying each other.
 
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