SINGLE PARENTS: Do you ever feel like the world expects you to have E.S.P. (Extra-Sensory Perception) about how to handle the special challenges of single parenting? Well, few parents feel prepared for the extra demands single parenting places on them. You don’t have to have Extra-Sensory Perception, but you can get a very special form of E.S.P. that will help you be the best single parent you can be. You can get . . .
(Effective Single Parenting)
for Single, Divorced and Widowed Parents
A FREE 30-page e-book
by Jody Johnston Pawel, LSW, CFLE
© 2003, Ambris Publishing
Get E.S.P. (Effective Single Parenting) and You Will Learn:
THE FACTS ABOUT SINGLE PARENTING
- The Myths/Truths about Single Parenting. Take a True/False quiz. Then read what research studies have learned about the effects of single parenting. Some of the results may surprise you!
- The Benefits of Single Parenting. While single parents often hear a lot of negative comments about being a single parent, there are some special benefits you might not have thought of!
THE TOP 10 CHALLENGES ALL SINGLE PARENTS FACE
There are many different “types” of single parents, but all of them face some common issues. This section summarizes the universal issues all single parents face and the skills needed to be Effective Single Parents. They include:
- Dealing with the Aloneness – Do you ever feel like you have to be everything to everyone? Is it difficult coping with everyday challenges all alone? And what about dealing with some of the most difficult times of your life? You don’t have to “go it alone.” Just follow these tips for what you can do to help you and your child “fill the void.”
- Having a Lack of Support – You may get support from extended family and friends when there is an emergency, but unless they are also single parents, they probably can’t related to the issues and feelings you experience daily. You need to network with other single parents, who truly “get” what single parenting is like. This section tells you how.
- Deciding If, When and How to Date – Dating provides an opportunity for singles to have a life beyond parenting. But when it comes to choosing potential dates and introducing them to your children, there are some specific things you need to consider and do. This section will give you some suggestions for easing into dating.
- Coping with Grief and Loss Issues – Single parents and their children have often lost many things simultaneously, so grief and separation issues are almost universal. How you handle your and your child’s grief and loss issues is extremely important. This section will help you better understand what you and your child are experiencing and offer some suggestions for working through difficult times in healthy ways.
- Handling the Financial Stress – Unless you are the heir to a fortune, you probably have fewer financial resources than two-income families. This section offers some helpful tips for doing more than “surviving” — learn how you can financially thrive and provide long-term financial stability for your children.
- Meeting Household Responsibilities – If you are a single parent, chances are your children help out more around the house than children from two-parent families. This section offers suggestions for maintaining balance, so you don’t become a servant and your children don’t become slaves.
- Not Having Enough Time – Single parents frequently feel overwhelmed by the responsibility, tasks, and emotional overload of raising children alone. As a result, single parents need better-than-average time-management and organizational skills to balance work and family — and know how to delegate or ask for help when necessary. This section will tell you the skills you need.
- Managing the Stress and Anger – Single parenting is stressful, so you need to prevent and manage stress build-up before you explode! This section will tell you the signs to look for in your children, to tell if they are experiencing too much stress and some helpful tips for what you and your child can do to manage your stress in healthy ways.
- Providing Consistent Parenting – Children need stability and security. While this is important for all children, it is especially crucial for children of single parents. This section will give you specific tips for maintaining balance in your life and providing the consistency and stability your children need.
- Building and Maintaining the Family’s Self-Esteem – Do you ever feel guilt because you don’t have a “Leave it to Beaver” family? Well few people do these days. You need to tend to your self-esteem issues so you will have enough reserves to take care of your children’s self-esteem. This section offers suggestions for how you can nurture yourself and build your child’s self-esteem.
WHO ARE SINGLE PARENTS AND WHAT ARE THEIR SPECIAL NEEDS?
While all single parents experience some common challenges, the reason someone is a single parent can pose special challenges. Look at the special issues some single parents face and special tips for each of the following “types” of single parents:
- Part-time single parents, who are temporarily parenting solo because their spouse is on an extended absence, due to reasons such as military service or business travel.
- Unwed Parents, including teen moms and other parents who must give up the freedom of a child-free single life — while getting none of the advantages of marriage or spousal support.
- Divorced Single Parents deal with the additional pressures and potential problems that can arise when maintaining an ongoing relationship with the ex-spouse. This section offers special tips around issues such as fostering teamwork between divorced parents, support and visitation issues, and special issues custodial and non-custodial parents face.
- Widow(er)s – face very unique issues related to how they became single parents, which are often neglected in single-parent resources. This section addresses these special needs and what widow(er)s can do to help themselves and their children make the often-unexpected transition to a one-parent family.
- Single Parents by Choice are the fastest growing family form in the U.S. today. Choosing to be a single parent has its benefits — and its special issues. We look at the three most common choices parents make to become a single parent and suggestions for addressing the special needs that choice presents.
- Artificial insemination or surrogate parentage
- Single parent adoption
- GLBT (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trans-gender)
WHAT RESOURCES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SINGLE PARENTS?
Look at this list of nearly 100 resources for single parents. Check them out, using the live, active links and current contact information. There are three types of resources in this section:
- Resources for single parents, including Books, Support Groups, Internet Resources, Articles and personal Coaching
- Bibliography of the resources the author used in compiling this e-book.]
- References to the specific endnotes cited throughout this e-book.
There are nearly100 resources listed in the ESP: Effective Single Parenting e-book. Here are just a few:
- National Center for Fathering provides research-based training, practical tips and resources to help men be the involved fathers, grandfathers, and father figures their children need. http://www.fathers.com
- Parents Without Partners. Educational organization of single parents (either divorced, separated, widowed or never married). Newsletter, online support. chapter development guidelines. Membership Dues involved. http://www.parentswithoutpartners.org
- Single Mothers By Choice. Support and information to mature, single women who have chosen, or who are considering, single motherhood. Services include “Thinkers” workshops, quarterly newsletter, and membership. http://www.singlemothersbychoice.com
- Single Parent Resource Center. Network of single parent self-help groups. Information and referral, seminars, consultation, resource library. Separate group for men and coed groups. Working on groups for homeless single parents and mothers coming out of prison. Newsletter. Guidelines and materials for starting parenting and teen groups. http://singleparentusa.com/
- Widowed Persons Service. A self-help organization for men and women who are widowed. Daytime and evening support groups and programs are available at more than 270 sites across the United States. Local referrals can be received by calling (616) 538-0101 or by writing to this address: Widowed Persons Service, 4270 Chicago Dr. S.W., Grandville, MI 49418. You can also do a search for “widowed persons service” and look for your local area or contact any local group, who can connect you to the national organization. NOT a dating site!
Financial Resources for Single Parents
Get a free financial guide for single parents that shares the benefits of budgeting, taking advantage of public assistance programs, refinancing, debt and credit counseling, and credit repair.
* To request permission to reprint the ESP (Effective Single Parenting) e-book, CLICK HERE. Complete the reprint permission form and return to Ambris Publishing using any of the contact numbers listed on the form.