We do what we have to do for friends, particularly our single mother(s). They need all the help they can get.
I saw a post by Bolanle Olukanni, she said something like, “this year, just as you have sworn to take nothing less than 100% from relationships, let’s make sure to bring to that table, matching energy”. We have to be more intentional about showing up for our friends-including the single mothers in our lives.
Your friend got pregnant outside nuptials. It happened, Baby daddy moved on(that’s why we are having this conversation), and your girl chose to raise her child despite the odds. She is a strong and admirable woman. You should recognize that, and be one of the few in her circle offering encouragement and shutting down the negative pep talk. She has probably had two ears full and some more of how things could have been different if she had made astute choices.
About time you both stop dwelling on that negative situation and instead try to salvage what you can. We are leaving all that blame-game in 2019. I am counting on you to help your friend rise from the ashes, like a Phoenix.
Parenting is a round-the-clock job. Raising a child as a single mother can be nightmarish. How’s your friend holding up? Are you helping where you can?
This is how you can make her life much easier.
Be a support system to your friend.
Support system: a network of people who provide an individual with practical or emotional support.
- Encourage her: The phrase “baby mama” has overnight become a celebrated status, and it is slowly and surely creeping into Africa. In a bid to eradicate the shaming, single mothers(out of wedlock) began to flaunt and paint this situation in such a way that it looks admirable…on the Gram. Still, it does not eliminate the reality that there is no glory in it. I know this, you know this and so does your friend. Likely, a day does not go by without her getting the “looks” from random people and outright disrespect, just for being an unwed mother. Your friend doesn’t need that condemnation from you too, and doesn’t need your reminder every time you meet, that “if not for the child, she would have…fill up with all the guilt-trip words we utter”. We have expressed our disapproval, and hopefully, she has learned her lesson. Now it’s time to pack that up and put a lid on it. This is the time you stand up for her-pray for her, call her up and remind her of her dreams. Motivate her to go for them, even if it means working twice as hard with a baby on her hip.
If you are free, why not?
Whenever you can and if you have kids yourself, invite hers on playdates. Your wage would be in the form of a zonked-out, sleep-deprived, grateful mother. She barely has time for herself. She may have a paid nanny, but you helping out whenever you can, speaks love to her in more ways than you can imagine. Host the child in your home or go over to her house and bond with your friend’s child, giving your friend some snatched me-time. She needs it.
3. Pamper her
Activities you guys used to do together but died after the baby arrived-you can slowly, but surely revive them. Once a month or every two weeks encourage your friend to free up her calendar, get her baby settled and come out for lunch with you, a movie date, a trip to the spa or just to the saloon to get your nails done. This will definitely lift her spirit and bring back her girlish exuberance.
4. Prepare her for dates
She is a single mother and not yet passed menopause! And even at that, grandmas’ still get hitched. In this part of the world “all hail Africa”, it is widely believed that once you are a single mother you are scarred for life, no man’s going to marry you. This is not true. I don’t want to dish examples because I don’t want you to go like, “if so and so could succeed as a single mother, then I shouldn’t be scared of having a baby out of wedlock, I can so rock it.” Sorry I am not here to encourage premarital sex, “sooryy”. I am here to tell you that your love life didn’t end the day you became a single mother. Being a single mother won’t stop the right man from putting a ring on it.
A part of Psalms 68:6 says, “God sets the lonely in families”-this is God’s word right here. If your girlfriend desires to have a home of her own with a husband-father figure present, then encourage her. It’s possible.
5. Get her practical household items
Even if she may not ask you, you can help her meet some of her needs according to your means. Surprise your friend with toys, family-friendly gadgets.
Let this year be the year we stay winning in every area of our lives, including our friendships.
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