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Are You Ready to Be a Single Mother? 11 Signs It’s Time To Leave Your Toxic Relationship

by | Jan 24, 2024 | 0 comments

The term “narcissism” on this blog is used to describe a specific set of personality traits. It is not intended to be used as a professional diagnosis.

Are you ready to be a single mother?

If you’re asking yourself that question, then something is not working with your relationship.

Maybe you and your partner are incompatible – or maybe you are being mistreated.

I’ve seen so many women stay in toxic relationships because they were scared of single mom struggles. They don’t believe they can do it on their own.

But it’s actually easier to be a separated or divorced single mom than to be trapped in a painful and stressful relationship.

And it’s so much better for your child.

I get it, though; it’s scary – I left my relationship during the pregnancy, and I was terrified.

Yet, being a single mom is doable and a far better outcome than being emotionally abused.

So, if you’re here to figure out if it’s time to go, just remember that if it is, you have the strength to see it through.

Being a Single Mom is Hard

I’m going to be totally honest with you – being a single mom is hard. Pair that with co-parenting with a narcissist, and it’s an indescribably stressful situation.

But being in a toxic and emotionally abusive relationship is worse.

If you’re not in a relationship with a narcissist, their bullshit exists outside of your personal space. Yes, they infringe it, but it’s still out there and not in here.

There’s a distance between their mistreatment of you and you, and in that space, you can set boundaries and build your emotional resiliency

But when you’re in the relationship, there’s no separation. It’s in and around you and your child 24/7.

I know the thought of being a single mom is scary, but knowing when it’s time to go will help you make that crucial decision.

Just remember that your main priority is the well-being of your child and yourself. If you’re not sure what to do, here are some signs to look out for:

Signs It’s Time to Leave the Relationship and Go Solo

1. Constant Emotional Manipulation

One of the biggest signs that it’s time to leave a toxic relationship is if you find yourself being consistently subjected to emotional manipulation.

Narcissists will often use manipulation tactics to control and undermine their partners. This creates a toxic environment for you and your child.

They might use things like guilt trips, gaslighting, or emotional manipulation to control your actions and decisions. This treatment makes you feel like you can’t trust your own perceptions, memories, and judgment.

2. Lack of Emotional Support

If you’re continually feeling emotionally unsupported in the relationship, it may be a sign that it’s time to go solo.

This can happen when your partner dismisses your feelings and needs and leaves you feeling unheard.

For example, they fail to provide you with comfort when you’re struggling, or they may dismiss your feelings because you’re “overreacting” or you’re too “sensitive” (these are actually forms of gaslighting).

3. Your Well-Being is Compromised

When your physical and mental well-being is compromised because of the relationship, it’s time to take a good look at your situation.

Apart from physical abuse, a toxic partner’s actions or words can cause you to feel stressed, anxious, or physically unwell. You may find yourself sacrificing your well-being just to maintain the relationship.

This is no bueno, and you’re better off being a single mom where you can have the space to take care of your well-being and the well-being of your child.

4. Consistent Disregard for Your Feelings

This is a little bit different than a lack of emotional support. This is a form of emotional neglect where your feelings are ignored, and your emotions belittled.

This includes ignoring requests for emotional support, meaning that you are denied support when you ask for it.

So when you tell your partner that something they do or say hurts you, they ignore this. They may brush it away or turn it around and make you feel bad for feeling that way.

5. Impact on Your Child’s Well-Being

If you notice that your child’s well-being is being negatively impacted by the toxic relationship, then becoming a single mother isn’t really a tough decision.

You’ll know this is happening if your child shows signs of distress or has inexplicable behavioral issues.

You may start feeling guilty about your child’s struggles and deeply concerned about their emotional and psychological well-being.

6. Unhealthy Household Dynamics

Recognizing unhealthy dynamics in your home, like constant tension, arguments, and a lack of harmony, is a clear indicator that something isn’t working. This can also include power imbalances.

If this is an issue, you’ll probably feel trapped or frustrated. The situation will seem unfair, and you may develop resentment toward your partner.

This may not be a dealbreaker (and can be addressed with honest conversations and therapy), but combined with any of these other signs, it shouldn’t be ignored.

7. Financial Control

If your partner exerts excessive control over finances and leaves you in a vulnerable position, this is a control tactic.

Your partner may limit your access to money or make financial decisions without your input or consideration.

You might feel like you have no say in the money, and you may end up struggling to make sure your child’s basic needs are met.

Trust me, being a single mom can be financially stressful, but it’s nothing compared to this!

8. Isolation from Supportive Relationships

Being isolated from friends and family by a narcissistic partner is, unfortunately, common. They do this in order to maintain control over you so you won’t have anyone to go to for support.

They may discourage or even prevent you from spending time with other people. Or they may cause drama to push your support system away.

This can be extremely lonely, and no position any mother should be in. It takes a village to raise a child, and you and your child need that support!

9. Continuous Blame and Criticism

Constant blame and criticism can do a real number on your self-esteem. We mothers are already hard enough on ourselves – we don’t need anyone to help!

It could be that your partner blames you for any issues in the relationship, or they criticize you without constructive feedback.

You may find yourself scared to make mistakes and feeling unappreciated.

10. Ongoing Power Struggles

If power struggles within the relationship persist, choosing single parenthood might be the only way to break free from the cycle of control and manipulation.

When every decision is a battleground for control, and your partner refuses to compromise or consider your perspective, it can leave you feeling trapped and helpless.

This is a terrible environment to raise a child in, and you can take back your power by leaving the relationship.

11. Your Happiness is a Distant Memory

Do you feel like you’ll never be happy again? If you struggle to remember the last time you felt genuinely happy in the relationship, it’s time to reconsider why you’re staying.

I’m not saying that being unhappy means you should pack up and leave – but it should make you really look at the relationship as a whole.

If you are being mistreated, then there is no bringing the happy back. You’ll find happiness as a divorced single mom.

Single Mom Struggles

Like I said, being a single mom isn’t easy. It comes with its own set of challenges, but overcoming them is entirely possible with the right mindset and support.

Trust me, you’re better off dealing with your own personal struggles than the struggles of a toxic relationship!

Here are some common single mom struggles and how you can take them on:

  • Financial Stress: As a single mom, you’re going to be relying on one income. If you’re lucky, you might get child support on top of that. But don’t forget that once you start bringing in less money, there are government programs that can help you out. Don’t let money trap you in a toxic relationship!
  • Time: When you’re running a single-parent household, you have to play all roles and balance all aspects of life. This includes work, parenting, and personal time. It’s hard at first, but every single mom finds a rhythm and a way of managing things. Make a schedule, delegate tasks, and set aside time for yourself whenever possible.
  • Emotional Exhaustion: The single mother experience is exhausting, both physically and emotionally. Connecting with support groups or friends can be a huge help so you don’t feel alone. Therapy can help you sort through your feelings. Blogging helps, too (from my personal experience ????).

These are just a few of the struggles you may face while raising children as a single mom. But compare that with the list of 11 struggles above, and suddenly the idea of doing it on your own doesn’t seem so daunting!

My Story With the Struggles of Single Motherhood

I don’t think it would be fair to share this advice without telling you my story.

I left a toxic relationship during my pregnancy, so I started motherhood as a singleton. I was fortunate to not have to worry about getting my child out of a bad relationship and situation.

But it was still terrifying. I spent my entire pregnancy convinced that my child and I were going to end up moving in with my mother. I didn’t think I could do it financially.

Plus, on top of that, I had the stress of being harassed and threatened by my ex – and the baby wasn’t even born yet!

But when she was, I knew that somewhere deep down, I had the strength to do it alone. I had to do it for her.

So if you’re on the fence about leaving, please don’t let fear keep you there. Think about what is best for you and your child, and start making plans.

Think about money, think about where you’re going to live and think about how you can leave safely.

Talk to a lawyer, talk to law enforcement, and look into government assistance programs. Reach out to your child’s school, women’s shelters, and churches – wherever you can find help.

Swallow your pride and do it for your child. Everything else will come with work and perseverance.

It’s been over 10 years since I left an emotionally abusive relationship with a baby on the way. I can honestly say that I am happy, and my daughter is happy. We have an amazing and comfortable life.

It was nothing like I imagined during those terrifying and stressful months of pregnancy!

Yet here we are, as my daughter would put it: “Slayin’ it.”

You Can Be a Single Mom!

Choosing to become a single mom is a hard decision. But recognizing the signs will help you figure out if it’s time to go.

The journey ahead will be challenging, but you can overcome the single mom struggles to give your child the best environment to thrive and grow.

Just don’t forget to seek help wherever you can get it.

What do you think about becoming a single mom? What scares you the most? Share with us in the comments below. ⬇️⬇️⬇️

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