On any given day the media will display headlines covering child support battles of the rich and famous. If you are a roamer of social media as most of us are it is not unlikely that you will stumble across a rant from a celebrities’ child’s mother reading off a host of issues they have with a father who is in the spotlight. The number one qualm being money; not enough money to be exact. Just yesterday I read six different articles based on a “single” mother expressing her feelings about not receiving enough money, time, or attention from the famous father of her child. A teen mom star turning her nose up at $1700 a month in child support stipend, the mother of a singers child upset about $2500 a month in child support, an athlete airing his own dirty laundry against a mother of several of his children whom he gives a stipend of $20,000 a month, a young lady acting out of spite, anger, and seemingly desperation to get the attention of her sons father who has been successful for years but recently joined the cast of a popular show and she now wants her son to have a piece of that pie and seemingly her fifteen minutes of fame.
But what about us? What about the everyday single mothers in the world? The ones of us that make up the majority that receive $0 a month in child support and no acknowledgement of the existence of our children? What about the warrior women that wear the shields of a mother and a father daily and carry the load of parenting their child alone day in and day out? Who will be our voice? Where are the headlines shining light on our plight? We don’t receive so much as crumbs to scoff at much less than thousands to be unappreciative of. It is just us supporting our children off the fruits of our labor and sometimes just barely by the skin of our teeth. There are no headlines featuring us or articles written about us. We do our due diligence in peace and quiet and focus only our children.
No judgment towards any mother regardless of the social or financial status of the fathers of their children. But this article is not for the ones with exceptional circumstances. Or is it? Maybe shedding light on the many of us who don’t have the luxury or option of support will maybe make them a little quicker to show gratitude and less reluctant to express anger and dissatisfaction.
For the single mothers out there doing it alone; this one is for you. This is to remind you single mom that you are enough, you are acknowledged, and you are making the tough decisions that make the world of your child go round. As single mothers we have a right to go through a rainbow of feelings day in and day out towards our situations as long as we still manage to show nothing but unconditional love and support towards our children. We all go through all of the stages of grief when dealing with an absentee parent; grief, anger, confusion, a brief moment of peace and then the cycle repeats itself and you are right back at where you began sad and angry. It’s ok to live in the moment of each of those feelings briefly. But do not allow your personal anger and emotions to urge you to act out. Always be kind, gracious, and informed. Know your rights and pursue financial support through the courts when you have tried all other logical options and simple verbal communication has failed you. When (if) you take those steps down to the courthouse do so with an attitude of respect for all parties involved including yourself, your child, as well as the child’s absent parent. Harbor no hard feelings in your heart towards the lesser only love and a small level of pity towards the fact they have chosen not to be present and share in the day to day light of your blessings. Housing negative feelings and harboring resentment will only add dead weight to your already heavy load. Never speak derogatory words or cast ill wishes towards the absentee in public, in private, and above all in front of your children. We all want to sometimes. We, although super women, are still yet only human with emotions. But I promise you humility and graciousness will sew more good seeds and blessings for your children than a big check. They are watching your steps and mimicking your mannerisms. Teach them the right way.
Be encouraged each and every day. Even on the days when money is tight, times are you tough, and your toddler or teen is having tantrums stay positive. Trust and know that your body was built for this. You are a carrier and promoter of life therefore the power that lies dormant in you is enough to forge through any obstacles life may throw your way. To the moms that work one, two and sometimes three jobs, the moms that go to school, the moms that are just trying to figure out how to put the pieces of their hearts back together and re-join society know; everything is going to be fine. Your child is going to be fine. And although some days the trails feel like they are far greater than the triumphs, the fact that you are still going means that you are still surviving. You are training your children by example to be tenacious and self-sufficient. Preparing them for life and instilling in them priceless characteristics that bread success. Although there may not be many headlines or spotlights shining on your struggle; there are two pairs or however many sets of eyes that your children have that are always focused on and looking up to you.