Saturday, February 27, 2010

Single Parenting VS Co-Parenting

Alright, here it is, something that has been WEIGHING on my mind lately, and it could get wordy or controversial, but I don't care, that's what the blog is for-discussion and expressing feelings.

Sometimes I tweet or facebook comment on having such a GREAT deal of respect for single parents when Pat works late, works on weekends, goes out at night, whatever it is, he isn't here, and TRUST ME, I do, I have sooooooo much respect for men and women who are doing it by themseleves. And by that, I mean men and women who are DOING IT ALONE!!! 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. The kids are your responsibility, there is no one else around to help you. I cannot imagine. Sure, you have a babysitter or night out every now or then, but can you imagine doing it alone? I can't even think about being the sole provider, caregiver, mother to my two kids. The thought COMPLETELY OVERWHELMS ME!

BUT, sometimes, I feel that people get the whole "single parent" title confused when they get divorced, separated, break up, whatever. When I say single parent, I am not talking about CO-PARENTING, and I am calling it that because I don't know what else to call it. I am not talking about the parents who share custody, responsibility or time with the other parent. I am sure it is very difficult to give up time with the child(ren), but when any of you married moms or dads had every other weekend and two overnights OFF, completely off, alone, to yourself, etc. It probably gets old, but I know in this house, it is a long standing joke that "every other weekend is starting to look pretty good"! I can't imagine not experiencing every single moment with my child, having step moms or dads involved in my kid's life or what not, but I can't get past "every other weekend", seriously, what if you had TWO WEEKENDS A MONTH to yourself? Is that really being a single parent? I just find it disturbing when people who have the support of their ex, claim to be a single parent. It does a diservice to the men and women out there who are doing it alone. The military moms and dads who are truly alone for months on end, that's being ALONE, widows=ALONE, and that my friends is what I would refer to as single parenting.

Hope I didn't offend too many of my loyal readers with this rant, just something I have been thinking about, would love to hear any of your comments!

2 comments:

The Magill Family said...

I agree with you Colleen in many ways, and yet as a child from a single parent home for many years, there are always going to be different circumstances.
In almost every aspect I would say that for 5 years my mom was a single parent. Yes my dad had us every other weekend - but that was if he even actually showed up, or didn't have to come late or bring us home early to cater to his personal schedule. And yes, he paid child support - the same amount for 15 years that was mandated by the courts when they first divorced - so for 2 kids he payed $275 a month - TOTAL! And then you add into the fact that many times his checks would bounce, and he rarely paid for the extra things - sports and club activities.
So from the outside looking in, someone would say my mother wasn't really a single parent - by from the inside she was in every way. It just goes to show you don't know what someone's life is really like until you walk in their shoes.

jaypee | enjayneer.com said...

The children's feelings and emotions are the most critical part of undergoing a divorce process. Kids are the most affected parties in the relationship so every divorcing couple must give extra attention to letting their kids slowly accept and understand the situation. In some cases, using a co-parenting planner (http://4help.to/parenting) is effective and will help the parents and the kids cope up with the situation. :)