It is July and the month has its challenges. Today I am specifically writing for the single parent who is feeling overwhelmed by the demands that all of their individual children present with, the parent who wants to help their children develop into their fullest potential. And is not turning on the television to do their parenting.
This week I received a letter from such a mother of four children.
…There are moments I think God couldn’t possibly think I have what it takes to raise these kids. It would be almost comical sometimes if it wasn’t so real. There is an underlying current of energy that wears out any person. Trying to take them to do things constantly wears me out… If I don’t have enough for them to do though they fight with each other. And they think debating is so much fun…
So I write this in an effort to encourage her and the other parents I see who are looking exhausted. The encouragement I have to offer is that this season will not last forever, and please try to accomplish only one non-routine item per day. If you do more, you will be double-minded.
Raising your children is a huge job, but you were given a desire to raise them well, and God will not give you the desire, without giving you the equipment to fulfill it.
If she was my coaching client – we would develop a mission statement, with realistic goals for THIS summer. We would then support her with a schedule, where she had some real breaks. If she had three two-hour chunks of time each week that were just hers. Remember that she is needing to raise these children, as a single parent for the next fifteen plus years. She does not have anyone to fall back on to raise her children if she falls ill or has a nervous breakdown.
The question remains – What ideas would you have for such a parent, who is charged with raising his/her children without any family support and with limited financial resources? Think again about how discouraging and isolating this would feel to be the parent, and the children of this parent.
Single Parenting Facts:
- There are currently 13,600,000 single parents raising over 21,000,000 children.
- 16% of single parent households are fathers raising children. Single parents are usually widowed, divorced, and from unmarried family situations.
Stay tuned for next week to see how we will encourage this mom over the month of July and August. This week her task is to create a mission statement and a schedule that supports her mission.
I would also ask this parent to do the Core Values Inventory so we can talk about it next week in her developing of her strengths. This should take less then 20 minutes, maybe try it yourself. (Click here for the link)