Single Parenting and the challenges of a career woman. – Ronke Oyedepo

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The word Single Parenting was alien in our grammatical context until it became prominent and hence a course to reckon with. A single parent is a parent not living with a spouse or partner and has most of the day-to-day responsibility in raising the child(ren). This status is attained as a result of the death of one partner, separation, divorce, etc.

They are usually referred to as the child (ren) primary ‘caregiver, the parent the child have residency with the majority of the time. Although this can be associated with both the Male and Female gender as either party has a fair share of burden or challenges attached to this status, but our society recognizes the woman as the primary ‘caregiver’ in cases of separation or divorce.

Considering the recent women campaign for gender equality which enables them to have a head-to-head run on all fronts with the male counterpart would make any woman that desires to become a professional in any field of study or occupation, thus such a woman is described as a ‘career woman. Combining both statuses of being a career woman and a single parent come with its own challenges and here are few possible challenges that are attributed to this dual status A single parent’s responsibilities certainly do not stop the moment work ends each day.

You may have what seems like a full day’s worth of tasks awaiting you at the home front. From cooking dinner to doing laundry to helping your child with homework etc. Although these same obligations are faced by working mothers who are married, a single parent has to face these responsibilities alone, without the helping hand of a husband. For that reason, many single parents feel chronically fatigued. They often feel physically and emotionally exhausted and find themselves yelling more at their children. As their youngsters move through middle childhood and normally become more opinionated and challenging of their parents’ points of view, more arguments may develop.

Single parents often feel they have no time for themselves, whether it is to exercise at the gym or to have dinner with friends. Even if they can find time for these individual pursuits, they may be so tired that they have no energy for them. Being deprived of sleep will take a toll on anyone, parent or child. Sometimes the best that you can do for yourself and your child is to get more sleep each night. For some single parents, during or after the divorce, their lack of energy is dramatic and part of more serious depression. Persistent sadness, irritability, difficulty sleeping, and weight gain or loss are all signs of depression. A depressed parent has much less to offer a child.

Single parents sometimes begin to perceive the responsibilities of child-raising as overwhelming. Even the most routine events in their child’s life, events at school, or normal oppositional behavior become burdens for parents struggling to squeeze everything into their day.

Single parents experience a great deal of tension and sometimes guilt that comes with not being able to attend to all of their child’s needs or to provide all of the opportunities they wish their child to have. At the extreme, these parents feel they can’t deal with their children anymore. They may resort to physical punishment and even become abusive if they are pushed too far or they may give up altogether and agree too easily to yield to their children’s demands.

Although am an advocate of being a career woman like every other woman would but beg to defer with the ideology of single parenting; however, it does not imply that as a result of myriads of challenges this class of women faces would make them a bad parent or they are parents to the bad ones in the society, but their adverse impact on the child (ren) can’t be totally separated What other challenges do you think single mothers face

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