Single Parenthood Struggles

Photo by nappy on

Being a parent is a huge responsibility and with the latest events surrounding parents /relatives doing harmful things to children or even killing them, I wanted to give you a positive look at some stunning examples to look up to. I will introduce you to three adults taking on single parenthood and all the challenges. The kids mean
more to them their own dreams.

The Parents:
Name: Jay Gray, 27, male(JG)
Children: I have 3; One Girl Age Six, Two Boys Ages Three and Two
When you became a single parent: I have been doing it alone for about 3 years.

Name: Talisha Townsend, 22yrs-old, female(TT)
Children: I have a beautiful, 1yr-old son who is the light of my life.
Thoughts on becoming a single mom: Me being the person that I am, I never wanted kids at all. I always pictured
myself getting married and that’s it. When I found out that I was pregnant, it changed my whole world around.

Name: Marcus Mosby, , male(MM)
Children: I have 2 children a daughter & son. My daughter is 9 & my son is 7.
When did you become a single parent: I have been a single parent for 5 yrs. since me and my children mother
separated. My children have my last name; I knew this was important because I didn’t want my children

The Talk:
What is the most stressful thing about being a single parent?
(JG): There’s no let up, you have to do everything every day without any help. Also, having to deal with the other
parent about things can be whole other battle.
(TT): The most stressful thing about being a single parent is having to do it all on your own. Trying to be both the
mother & father is hard but you have to do it because that’s what your child needs. Getting up early, going to sleep
late, making sure there’s food on the table, clothes on their backs, and still juggle your own life is very stressful.
But who else is going to do it but you.
(MM): The most stressful thing about being a single father is doing the job by yourself. It’s hard raising children
single whether you are a mother or father. . I receive no W.I.C. or free housing (even though I never applied.)

Do you have a support structure? And is it important to have one?
(JG): No. I believe, however, that it is important to have one because no one can do it alone and it can become
very stressful.
(TT): I believe it is very important to have a support structure. There are going to be times when you reach a
breaking point (especially with a newborn) and need that extra support because life as a single parent is stressful
enough. My support structure is my boyfriend. He helps me a lot. When he sees I am about to crash, he comes in
and lends a helping hand.
(MM): Yes I have a support structure and I think this is important. My structure is my family. They help me with
watching the children when I’m at work. This is so important to me because it helps me thru the struggles of
having to be a single parent. They also help by watching the kids when I want to go out and have fun, but that
seldom happens because I have responsibilities.
Do you feel that single fathers get treated unfairly?
(JG): Yes, because I believe that mothers are overly glorified. Also, fathers have more to deal with legally, lack aid
with the state, etc.
(MM): Yes I think single fathers do get treated unfairly. I think the reason for this is because if your not married
then you have little if no rights if you go to court for custody. A woman has majority rights in court and can tell the
smallest lie to make a father life miserable.
Are you worried about raising a daughter? (males)
(JG): Sometimes I am. It’s difficult to relate to her on a female’s level. It’s impossible for me to see things from a
woman’s perspective so I have to “guesstimate” and try to be as understanding as I can with her.
(MM): No, I’m not worried about raising my daughter. Long as I’m in her life she will grow to know how a man is
supposed to take care of his responsibilities and will know how a man is supposed to love her as a woman.
Are you worried about raising a son? (females)
(TT) When I found out that I was having a boy, I was kind of worried about being a single mother raising a son. Boys
take it the hardest not having their fathers around and I sometimes question myself on how can I teach a little boy
how to be a man when I’m a woman. I just figured I would cross that bridge when I got there.
How is the dating scene when you have kids?
(JG): It is very difficult for me because it is hard to find time to do so. I also don’t want to bring any other women
around my children until I am close enough to that woman. With it being hard to find time to get to know
someone that makes it almost impossible to date.
(MM): I think dating is kind of hard, due to the fact that you can’t bring just anybody around your children, but the
good side to that is your children will help you find a good mate because you are a package deal.
Are you able to get out and do adult things often?
(JG): No, I recently had to send my children to their mother for a couple weeks just to have some time to just go
have a drink out and do adult things. And that was doctor ordered because my stress level was so high.
(TT): I am able to get out and do adult things every now and then. When my son was like 3 months old, I remember
my mom telling me to get out and take a break before I drive myself crazy. So still to this day, both my mom &
sister help with my son when I need a breather.

What are some of the most important lessons you want to teach your children?
(JG): Continue to be family oriented and to never lose sight of family and the importance of sticking together. Also
not to be caught up in chasing things that have material value before doing things that you love to do and be
around. Never be superficial, lazy, or stopped from any opportunity.
(TT): Some of the most important lessons I want to teach my child is to never be afraid to chase your dreams and
don’t always wait for opportunity to knock.
(MM): The most important things I want to teach my children is about life and how they should carry themselves
as they grow old. So when they do get grown I’ll feel like I taught them well.
What are your feelings about bringing a potential partner around your kids?
(JG): I don’t do it. That’s the dilemma I have with dating because I just do not want to bring “potentials” around
my children. I do not want that stigma of having multiple women around my children.
(TT): My feelings about bringing potential partners around my child are first I got to make sure it’s right. I don’t just
want to bring anybody in his life that would quickly walk right back out. Like whoever it is, I need to make sure they
are in it all the way because if not, then it will never go anywhere.
(MM): I feel that if a person is not down for me and my children then they are not good enough for me and
shouldn’t be around my children anyway.
Are you a strict parent or your child’s friend?
(JG): Neither. I’m not strict because that produces rebellion. I’m definitely not my children’s friend, I’m their
parent, so I will make the tough decisions that they sometimes may not understand now but will later on.
(TT): As far as being a strict parent or child’s friend, I plan on being both. I want him to know that he can come to
me about anything but at the same time don’t get too comfortable because I am his mother first.
(MM): I’m not my child’s friend but I am their parent. I’m not strict but I will chastise them to let them know I’m
the parent.
Are you involved in every aspect of your child’s life?
(JG): Absolutely, I have to be involved in all aspects. That, to me, is what matters. I work hard to make sure that I
have the freedom to be involved as much as possible in my children’s lives. That’s the decision I made and I take a
hit within my own personal life, but it is worth it to me.
(TT): When my son gets older, I do plan on being involved in every aspect of his life. I look at my childhood and
what it would have meant to me if my parents were around more. I want him to be able to come to me with any &
everything and know that his momma, if not anybody else, got his back.
(MM): Yes I am involved in every aspect of their life. From when they were 1st born, to their 1st steps, potty
training, their days at school, financially, until they get grown, and I get old, I’ll be there no matter what.
Do you work outside the house?
(JG): Yes, I work 3 jobs actually, but my jobs give me some form of the freedom I need to be with my children as
much as possible.
(MM): Yes I do work.

Do you cook your children home cooked meals nightly for you children?
(JG): Majority of the time. Sometimes there are nights that we eat out and times that microwave dinners will be
made but I try to cook more often than not.
(MM): Not every night do I cook a meal, but I don’t take sitting down at the dinner table with my children for
What are some of your biggest concerns as a parent?
(JG): If I’ll die before they are adults. Also, if I am doing, as much as, I possibly can for them.
(TT): One of my biggest concerns as a parent is that conversation when my child asks me where his father is or why
he wasn’t around. I don’t want my son growing up feeling like his father abandoned him but at the same time how
do you word that without it sounding like he did? I just don’t want to see my son hurt.
(MM) My biggest concern as a parent is my children’s well-being, making sure they grow up, and go in the right
direction. As a parent we want to see our children doing well. So that’s a big concern 2 me.
Do you censor what your kids watch and hear?
(JG): Not really, because if they don’t see/hear it with me, they will definitely get exposed to it away from me.
That way I can at least see how they react to those certain exposures.
(MM): Yes I do you can’t let your children do and watch any and everything.
What do you do to relax?
(JG): I stock up on entertainment at home. Movies, T.V., video games, or take my children somewhere that works
for all of us.
(MM): To relax I make sure my children straight then I relax.
How do you measure your success as a parent?
(JG) How a child reacts with their parent. I feel that my children will come to me for anything and respect me to be
their parent. They also take heed to the things that I try to teach and show them and give back great feedback
that they are paying attention. But I also feel that my job is never done.
(MM) I know I’m a good father because my children tell me so.
If given the option would you send your kids to public school?
(JG) Not in elementary, but high school yes.
(TT) If given the option to send my child to public school, I would say yes. I feel public school is a small dose of the
real world and what to expect out of life. I mean of course he would be going for education but at the same time
you build bonds with different personalities you may not come across in private or home schools. I feel you can
learn to be a better judge of character.
(MM) Yes I think there is nothing wrong with the public system long as you are teaching your children how to act
and what you expect from them by going to school.

Do you think society has made single parenthood seem like the norm?
(JG) Not yet, it is overly exposed in opposed to married parents but I do not believe that has been made the norm
just yet.
(TT) I do feel society has made single parenthood the norm especially with shows like 16 & pregnant and Teen
Mom which glorifies teenage pregnancy. Now days it seems cool to be young and pregnant because you can get a
chance to be on TV or you have some parents that take full responsibility of their child’s child which to me feels
like they are condoning it.
(MM) With all the independent women and society making it seem like families don’t need both parents it is
becoming more regular than not.
Is there a lot of drama between you and the other parent?
(JG) There used to be because we could never agree on anything. But as time passes we begin to understand that
it really is not about us but more of what is best for the children to give them the best opportunity to grow.
(MM) Yes there is a lot of drama between us. This is why I try to be the bigger person cause after all the bad
feelings and drama we put each other through we still have children to raise. So it’s uncalled for.
Has having children made you grow up or just more aware of what you are doing?
(JG) Both, it makes you sit and value what is important and also acknowledge what you have accomplished thus
far. Makes me more aware of the decisions I make and puts things in a clearer perspective.
(TT) Having children does make you more aware of things. I feel it has made me grow up and snap into reality a lot
faster. Being a young adult, all you’re thinking about is yourself and what you’re going to blow money on next.
When you bring a child into the equation, it is no longer about you. Everything you do from now forward is to
better your child’s life.
(MM) My children made me the man I am. If it wasn’t for them I’d probably still be ripping and running the
streets. I thank GOD for my blessing because my children truly are a blessing.

Single parenthood is not what they had in mind when they had children, but they cannot see living a day
without those children. Single parents are not always just women there are men who step up to the challenge as
you can see from this story. No matter who is being the sole provider for the children it is important that the
children have a sound foundation. I commend all the single parents that took part in this story and those out there
living it every day.

Queen G

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