Courtesy of Steph Montgomery

9 Things Single Moms Can't Do That Other Moms Take For Granted

Ad failed to load

When I first became a mom, I used to joke about motherhood being a full-time job with no pay and rad benefits. Then I became a single mom and realized I had no idea what being a full-time parent was actually like. Without a doubt, single parenthood is pretty much the hardest thing I've ever done. It involved a lot of sleepless nights, missed events, and the absence of solo-trips to the bathroom (or anywhere, for that matter). There are so many things single moms can't do that other moms take for granted, and sometimes simply acknowleding that fact can make a single mom feel seen, heard, and valued.

When I was married to my ex-husband I honestly already felt like a single mother. I mean, he was rarely home and wasn't a very involved parent. Then I actually became a single mom and realized that wasn't the case. Like, at all. When I was married, at least I could take a shower by myself or go for a run without having to take the day off from work or push the kids in the jogging strollers. I was unhappy in my marriage, to be sure, but I also received way more respect from people as a married woman with kids, than I did as a struggling single mom.

There were other things I took for granted. Namely, having adult contact, because oh how I longed for someone to have daily personal conversations with over the age of 4, or to be able to sleep in the same bed with someone every night. For me, single parenthood was a dichotomy of extremes — loneliness and wanting to be touched and constant running and wanting your kids to stop touching you. Being a single parent was hard at times, but it gave me some needed perspective on what I was missing, what I wanted in a partner, and what I needed in my life.

Ad failed to load

Now that I have re-married,I still think back to those hectic, busy days and long, lonely nights. I love my married life, but I won't ever take for granted having a loving partner and co-parent in my life again.

Ad failed to load

Taking A Bath

As a single mom, the only time I could really stop and take a breath was late at night or early in the morning. Even then, at least half the time, a child would wake up and I would have to get out or let them join me. Not exactly relaxing.

Finding Time For Self Care


I felt so guilty whenever I tried to take care of myself. I guess the so-called bright side, though, was the fact that I rarely had any time to take care of myself. Usually "self care" involved asking for a day off work, or asking someone to babysit or pick my kids up from school, and I couldn't afford either. So, most of the time I skipped out on self car entirely.

Staying At Home

When I was a single mom, I had to work to support my kids. I didn't have the luxury of staying home with them (not to say that staying at home with kids all day is in any way easy).

Then again, going to work (even when it was a job I hated) usually provided me with the only adult interaction I could enjoy, so it wasn't all bad.

Ad failed to load

Having A Partner To Vent To


Now that I am re-married, I realize that one thing I really value about having my spouse in my life is having someone I can vent to about, well, everything. Even just the act of telling someone about my day is super cathartic. Single parenthood is so lonely without it.

Attending Events With Your Kids

I had to miss a ton of events with my kids, usually because I couldn't find child care, bring my younger child along, or couldn't get time off during the work day. When I did attend, I always felt like everyone was judging me. Honestly, I felt like the worst mom on the planet.

Sleeping With A Partner Every Night


So, it's not like I was celibate when I was a single mom. I got some, but until I met my husband I didn't have someone to come home to every night. It was so lonely and often I had horrible insomnia as a result.

Ad failed to load

Getting Sick

I remember calling my kids out of day care when I was too sick to drive them. I also remember driving them to day care when I was too sick to care for them. In case you're guessing, both instances sucked.

Losing Your Cool


Single parents often don't have the luxury of losing their sh*t. You have to be a parent every hour of every day. They also don't have the ability to do the things they need to do to recover when they do lose their cool, like taking a break, sitting alone in the bath with a bottle of wine, or going for a walk or a drive. Most of the time I just sat on the bathroom floor and cried.

Actually Co-Parenting

I learned the hard way that co-parenting with a partner, even a less than stellar one, is way easier than single parenting and especially when your ex is a crappy co-parent or is absent entirely. Never underestimate the value of commiseration or collaborative problem solving, friends.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

New Moms Have Two Options: Be "Sad & Fat" Or "Desperate & Thin"

As the line goes, the worst thing you could say about me, I've already thought about myself. In the early postpartum period with my son, it was: "I am overweight, lonely, and heartbroken." It was four days after I brought my son into the world, and I…
By Danielle Campoamor

6 Fascinating Facts About Spring Babies: You Could Have A Leader On Your Hands

Does the season in which you are born affect you or are all seasons pretty equal? It turns out that there are many ways in which the your child's birth season could give you an insight into things to come. Whether you are expecting a baby in the next…
By Shari Maurer

Kids Will Love These TV Shows & Movies Coming To Netflix In April

It's that time of the month again: as March draws to a close, Netflix gets ready for a little bit of spring cleaning. Though some TV shows and movies will have to find homes elsewhere, their departure makes room for all kinds of exciting new media. A…
By Megan Walsh

I'm A Stay-At-Home Mom &, Face It, These 11 Stereotypes Are Totally True

Hello, friends! It's me, your resident stay-at-home mom. You know, there's a lot that's said about me and my kind, and the vast majority of it is not even remotely true. For example, this whole "we're lazy, vapid, unambitious, anti-feminist, backstab…
By Jamie Kenney

The Pressure To Worry About The Gap Between Kids Is So Bad For Moms

"Two under two is absolutely crazy," a friend recently told me upon hearing the news that I was expecting a second child. "Why would you do this to yourself? Seriously, why?" However harsh her words, she was only echoing the same feelings I'd been ba…
By Marie Southard Ospina

To Be Honest, I Couldn't Survive Motherhood Without My Job

The decision to work outside the home once you've become a parent can be a complicated one. Some people don't really have a choice, and go back to work because they're either a single parent or can't sustain their family on one income. Some choose to…
By Priscilla Blossom

I Feel Guilty That My Kid’s Dad Is A Better Parent Than Me, & That’s BS

I was scared, and he was sure. I was clueless, and he was well-researched. I was making mistakes, and he was picking up the pieces. From the moment I found out I was pregnant until just last night, when I threw my hands up in the air and left the alw…
By Danielle Campoamor

These Millennial Parents Are Taking Gender-Neutral Parenting To An Entirely New Level

A woman on the subway looks at my bulbous shape and asks, “What are you having?” I take a deep breath and throw a glance to my 5-year-old. “I’m having a baby,” I say to the woman. “No, no” the woman says laughing as she pushes further. “Are you havin…
By Madison Young

My Daughter Is Obsessed With Being "Pretty" & I'm Way Past Terrified

Last week, when I picked up my daughter after school, she immediately wanted to know if I liked her hair. "Is it pretty?" she asked. Her hair was pulled up into two ponytails that were intertwined into thick, long braids. A shimmering pink and purple…
By Dina Leygerman

7 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 20s, But I Will

I was 24 when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter. The pregnancy was a surprise, since I was on birth control (side note: antibiotics and birth control don't mix), but my partner and I decided to continue with the pregnancy and committed to m…
By Candace Ganger

7 Things I Wish My Partner Had Said To Me In The First Hour After Giving Birth

I don't know if it was the buzz of the surrounding machines, the non-existent cry of our son as the doctors tried to resuscitate him, or the fact that I'd already been through labor and delivery once before, but I knew something was missing after I h…
By Candace Ganger

Moms’ Groups Weren’t For Me, Sorry

I go to my moms’ club everyday of the week, but not usually on weekends. My moms' group is a place I can always count on finding fellow mothers who understand the daily struggles and triumphs of parenthood and of juggling life’s responsibilities. Dep…
By Samantha Taylor

Millennial Women Are Getting Married Later Than Gen X, & The Reasons Why Are Pretty Badass

The battle of the generations seems to come up when it comes to every lifestyle or career choice people make. Women, especially, are an important demographic when it comes to analysts looking at the lifestyle choices we make or the expected milestone…
By Josie Rhodes Cook

I've Had 3 Miscarriages But *Please* Keep Telling Me About Your Pregnancy

I can feel the tension the moment my friend announces her pregnancy. I can hear the forced nonchalant attitude she's willing herself to exude as she fishes for the ultrasound. I know why I was the last to learn that she was expecting; why she keeps l…
By Danielle Campoamor

7 Early Signs You're Going To Need An Epidural, According To Experts

Even if you've constructed an elaborate birth plan, it's impossible to control every aspect of labor and delivery. Complications can occur, proactive measures might be necessary, and your mind is subject to change when those damn contractions really …
By Candace Ganger

I'm Pregnant & I Refuse To Read Any Parenting Books

I didn't read any parenting books when I was expecting my daughter, and I refuse to read any parenting books as I await my second child now. I'm the first to admit that I don't really know what I'm doing when it comes to raising my daughter. A good d…
By Marie Southard Ospina

12 Overnight Face Masks To Use To Wake Up Feeling Pampered AF

Spring is right around the corner, and as far as I'm concerned, the sunshine and warm breezes can't come soon enough. But now that we're about to say goodbye to winter, it's a good time to take stock of your facial skincare routine. You know, in the …
By Katie Malczyk

11 Essential Products To Pack In Your Hospital Bag, According To OB-GYNs

The minute you go into labor (or think you're going into labor), chaos ensues. You and your partner are likely to get a little frantic, just like in the movies, so you most definitely want to have a hospital bag packed before the day comes. This prec…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

7 Photos You *Must* Take In The First 6 Months Of Motherhood

In my experience, becoming a mom is like becoming an amateur photographer. There's just something about the need to capture every single coo and sorta-smile that leaves you obsessed with all things photography. I know I couldn't stop taking selfies w…
By Candace Ganger

Here's How Early An Ultrasound Can Actually Determine Your Baby's Sex

From the moment you see those two lines on a pregnancy test, there are a few markers along the way that stand out as especially exciting. Amongst them are hearing your baby's heartbeat and feeling that first, sweet little kick. And if you are finding…
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik