Through a glass darkly

"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." (1 Corinthians 13:12)KJV

Friday, November 25, 2005

Reflections of a Single Parent

The following is an excerpt from a friend's email to me. With her permission I have published it here as she does not yet have her own blog.

"It's amazing through all of the disappointment of my failed marriage, to this day I struggle to find where my former husband was any kind of a leader, provider or protector of our family, but I simply can't. Divorce recovery takes a long time and I hope some day I will be able to help our growing community of single parent families. If I try to do that now I would simply be taking away time from [my daughter] and that is not an option. Alas, my heart is the right place for knowing there is a ministry for me to help, but my young daughter absolutely comes first. I love that my priority is in the right place and in the meatime I will be out there getting better educated on the subject.

What is amazing throughout the last several years is that regardless of those moments of self-pity (sorry), I always came back to the fact that Jesus Christ is the leader, protector and provider of my family, He loves me more than I imagine, and He is the best most compassionate friend when I confess my struggles to Him.

I read the site connections as well about how singles are viewed as temptations or threats. While I agree that is an ugly reality for singles, I'm not sure that includes single mothers. Single mothers seem to be kept socially at a long arm's length because their needs are so great and they are viewed as burdens, and I don't believe the same prejudices are held for single fathers. Social conversations with single moms after church are often short and sugar-coated so [my child] doesn't come across as a burden, and not lose the little amount of socialization she gets. Beyond that, there is no denying [that with]the demands of {my daughter's} day, marrieds and [those with] extended families are better able to manage .

I remember an email I got a few months ago from our Brownie Troop leader regarding a mandatory parent meeting at 8:30 on a Thursday night and the message read "only one parent need attend". Ooh, shamefully I did not take the high road in my reply: "Since I AM the only parent, 8:30PM is out of the question". This is the same mom that gave me grief last year and said that she works too (2 days a week).I have a long way to go! I don't mind my walk alone with Jesus Christ, it's actually a sweet place to be because He is the most wonderful constant in my life.

I have been subject of strange behavior and conversations lately, though. It's been three years and I have finally, quietly let my coworkers [be]aware of the situation. I wish I hadn't said anything but the interjections here and there about my spouse, when there is none, were getting old. One of the guys means well but cannot keep his mouth shut and since he has spurted out some weird comments. Another guy, who was my boss at [my former company] and didn't realize the situation, went on a rant about how he was offered an opportunity to consider managing an estimating department out in [another site, going] on and on about how the entire department was nothing but single mothers and what a hassle that would be. There are a lot of demands on single mothers and I'm sorry that our status implies we too are a such a hassle! No matter what our status is, there are perceptions far and wide. You really didn't need that raise or promotion - you don't have a family to support!

The director of education [of my church] finally replied this week and said my note made her think again about how to reach single parent families and singles in general in our congregation. Whatever happens, it won't happen over night..."


  • At Fri Nov 25, 07:45:00 PM PST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    When the inferior Hagar bor a son to Abraham, she was essentially a single mother, she was found alone...and was given her strength "in the God who sees"... Genesis 16:13


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