Being a single parent is extremely tough. But, being a single dad in particular does with its own set of unique challenges. For one, you’re typically seen as the one who should provide, but also as the one who isn’t involved quite as much. Gender roles and expectations, while we try and defy them, still play a part in how single fathers are seen every day. So, we’re here for you guys. Following, you will find a few pieces of encouragement that every single father needs. Your job is tough, and the expectations can make you feel small sometimes. We’re here to tell you that you’re doing a great, and you should keep doing what you’re doing.
Encouragement for A Single Dad: You’re Doing Awesome!
Set aside time for yourself, you’re important too
The one thing that most single parents forget to do, is unwind. You have a lot on your plate, and your job is never ending. So, whether you time is then minutes, or an hour— create a ritual for yourself. A long, hot shower, a night on the town, or maybe even a nice date. If you don’t do something for yourself every now and then, it can be quite difficult to not resent your role every now and then. A good reset, is just what the doctor ordered.
Take pride in the small victories!
Whether that’s cooking a solid meal, getting your kid to say ‘thank you’ to a stranger, or even just one kid using the potty— celebrate!!!!! You’ve just done something awesome for your family. Use this as an opportunity to feel the presence of all your hard work, and revel in it. Being a single dad is tough, but extremely rewarding. Especially in a moment you’ve worked hard for.
It’s okay to feel relief when you’re on your own for a bit
As we’ve said, and will say again— you need a break. You don’t have to feel bad for wanting them, and you definitely don’t have to feel bad for enjoying your alone time— even if that’s at work. When you drop them off at school, that feeling of guilt over wanting to close your eyes and fall asleep right there typically takes over for a lot of single parents. But, it shouldn’t! You work hard. At work, at home, in the kitchen, baths, bedtime… you have two full-time jobs. Repeat after me: it’s okay to enjoy alone time.
Have fun with it!
Ten years down the road, you’re going to look back and miss those rainy Saturday movie days, or evenings on the basketball court. When you have the chance to spend quality, fun time with the kids— leave all that other stuff behind. Work, custody hardships, financial woes— check them at the door for a bit. You have a unique opportunity to watch your kids grow up close, and to take the credit for the awesome people they’re becoming. Be the person you want them to be, and you can never go wrong. We wish you luck on this incredible, tough, and rewarding journey.