- Single parents say that children don't get balanced love from both parents.
- Other single parents say that feeding children is also hard
Single parenting is an experience most parents dread but sometimes is a result of issues beyond one's control. Some couples lose spouses, others divorce due to irreconcilable differences while others were simply unprepared to be parents.
Whatever the reason, today we explore the lives of single parents. We find out how they cope, the challenges and opportunities they see in this particular style of parenting.
Diana, who asked that we use one name, narrated that in October of 2021, she came face to face with her greatest fears. The mother of two held onto a dysfunctional yet abusive marriage for years hoping the storm would calm down and they would live happily ever after.
She recalls the day she came to the realization that enough was enough. Her abusive husband beat and insulted her in front of her children.
The sight of my little son pleading with the dad to stop beating me, hurt worse than the beating.Diana
I made up my mind to leave and start afresh with my children. "God has been kind to us, He has provided, and we are doing well. Especially after my children's father swore never to take care of them after we left.
Nakayiwa Racheal a mother of three, two boys and one girl explained that what drew her close to an understanding that the boys need a daddy figure in their lives. There is not so much she can teach boys about being men. As they grow older, the need to be assertive increases because unlike girls sometimes boys might look down on women's instructions. Sometimes they listen, sometimes they don't. Nakayiwa divorced due to irreconcilable differences.
She says that they agreed that the father of the children pays school fees for them then she covers the other needs such as food, shelter. The challenge though is that since COVID19 started her income has not been sufficient to take care of all their needs. She says that she has had to trim her family's expenditure to fit. Often she will hear the children grumble saying that things would be better if their dad was present.
Single mother of two daughters, Byamugisha Victor expressed worry saying that her daughters have never lacked anything. " They have had everything they needed and wanted too. The challenge though is I spent so much energy flawlessly taking care of them. I worry that they may never realize how important it is to get married in the future. I worry about whether they will be dependent on their husbands in the future. " She explains.
I know for sure that it is better to bring up children with both parents present because they learn the importance of each of the parents."Byamugisha added.
Some single parents are still hurt from their past relationships which causes them to sometimes neglect their roles towards the children.
However Catherine Ruhweza commonly known as Maama Tendo a Marriage Councilor said that ,its a tragedy whenever marriages breakup ,not only to the immediate family members but to the nation at large because marriages contribute a lot to the stability of the nation.
She added that when children are brought up by both parents in marriage,they learn to socialize in the society,they grow up respecting both parents among others ,its on this ground that she based and asked parents to always bring in divorce as the last option.
Maama Tendo further explained that, where there has been divorce,parents should engage in co-parenting ,that their differences and anger shouldn't affect the proper growth of their children .
Parents shouldn't use children to punish each otherMama Tendo
Even when parents divorce ,they shouldn't forget the reason that had brought them together in the first place which was love, that as they raise children in a single parenthood status,they shouldn't bad mouth the other partner before their children.
She noted that single parents may not deeply explain to children why they had to divorce but all they have to do is always to encourage them to make right choices of partners when they grow up so that their children grow with both parents.