A Guide To Raising Children as a Single Parent
Being a single parent isn’t an easy situation; when there is only one person handling the decision-making and the daily child-rearing tasks, it is easy to become frustrated and overwhelmed by all the responsibility.
However, you and your child can still have fun together and create lasting memories. Implementing the following tips will make your life a little easier and help you relax and enjoy your little one’s childhood.
Add structure to your day
A routine is important, whether you are a single parent or not. Children and adults alike thrive if they know what to expect. Set a time for morning wake up, meals and bedtime, and stick to it. Many single parents feel that they don’t get enough time to spend with their children because of all the daily tasks that they have to attend to.
Often, this means that they allow their little ones to stay up too late so they can spend time with them. This is not, however, a good idea. Both you and your children deserve to have the downtime you need to be happy and productive during the day.
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Have fun with your child
You are going to be busy. You are going to feel like you may never get caught up with chores. However, regardless of all that, carve out a block of time in your schedule to give your undivided attention to your child. Play together. Laugh and be silly. Do something that your child wants to do. It will bring the two of you closer together and may help you relax and feel better as well.
Give your child some responsibility
You won’t be able to do everything around the house on your own, so it is important to get your children to lend a hand. Even very young children can help by cleaning up their toys. Sit down together as a family and talk with your children about the importance of teamwork. See if there are any particular chores that your children would really like to do. Start out by assigning one chore per child and then go from there. As your children get older, it may be a good idea to set up a chore chart to keep everyone (including you) clear on their responsibilities.
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Take time for yourself
Spending every second of your free time with your children doesn’t make you a better parent; it may actually lead to burnout. At least once a month, do something for yourself, all on your own. See if a family member or a trusted babysitter can stay with your children while you go to a movie, have a quiet dinner out or just walk around the mall by yourself for a little while.
Don’t fall into the trap of using your free time to do something for the household; there will be plenty of time for that another day. Make this all about you so you can recharge and be a better, happier parent for your little one.
Single parenthood, though occasionally stressful, can also be one of the best times in your life. Follow the tips above to help yourself make the most of the situation.