I have been raising my daughter for over a year and people aren’t always supportive. Especially here in Hungary, people tend to criticize you instead of supporting you when you’re going through a difficult period. In this post, I have collected the nastiest things people have said to me since I became a single mom.
1. “You are showing her a bad example by showing her that family isn’t important.”
My marriage ended because of infidelity on my ex’s side. After a year of trying to save my marriage, I asked him to move out. I have been looking for a new partner, but as a single mom, it’s not a priority at this point. The most important thing for me, for now at least, is to provide an emotionally and mentally safe environment for my daughter. I don’t want to be single for the rest of my life, but I have accepted the situation, I feel good alone and I’m taking my time trying to find an ideal partner. According to some nice people, though, I should either take my ex back or find a new partner soon because by raising my kid in a single-parent family, I teach her that it’s not important to live a family, although family should be a core value. It is a core value for me but I love and respect myself enough to not return to a situation that caused me stress, anxiety, sleepless nights and low self-esteem. I teach my daughter to set boundaries and not to accept destructive behaviour even if the unity of a family is at stake. I love myself first.
2. “Go find a man a.s.a.p or your daughter will become gay.”
Oh boy, this is my favourite one. My daughter sees that I can deal with almost everything: clean the house, cook, do the laundry, do the shopping, mow the lawn, trim the shrubs, take care of the vegetable garden, etc. I one night I had to fix the stuck latch of our front gate as I didn’t want to leave the gate open for the night. A few months ago, I had to fix the broken tap – of course, it fell apart at 7.30 in the evening while my daughter was standing in the tub waiting to have a shower and it was too late to call a repairment. I fixed it. It has been working ever since. Someone told me that by showing her that a woman can do anything without a man, I make her believe that men aren’t necessary, so she will reject men as she gets older and might end up gay.
3. “You should never show your daughter your weaknesses. She has to think that you have a superpower.”
According to the person who said this to me, I shouldn’t show sadness, stress or any type of negative emotion in front of her. The person went on to say that my daughter is likely to develop separation anxiety if she sees me ill. Seriously? How am I supposed to hide a fact that, say, I have a cold or flu or whatever?
4. “You shouldn’t be so picky about men. You’re getting old, you should be already happy when someone wants to be with you.”
I think anyone at any age has the right to choose between ‘candidates’, whether male or female. I’m not already happy when someone wants to be with me because I feel that I have the right to stay single and keep dating until I find the ideal one (not the perfect, the ideal one). A friend of mine said that the only reason I have such a big mouth is that I’m only 35 and men are still interested in me. As she said, ‘You will see what happens when you’re 45 and nobody would touch you with a barge pole.’ Another friend of mine defended me, though. She said, ‘You know what? I’ve known you for nine years and you’re like a good wine: as you age, the better you become. I don’t think you should worry about what happens when you’re 45.’
What do you think about these comments? Do single moms show a bad example to their kids? Does age really matter? Does it matter that much?