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In this post: Calls to action single parents and accomplices who want to build a better world for single parent families
Badass Acknowledgements & Spectacular Wisdom
In March 2021, Bellamy S. of Revolutionary Humans and I hosted a virtual event on surviving single parenting in the midst of the hot mess that was 2020 and continues through 2021.
Bellamy and the awesome attendees who participated tapped into some badass acknowledgements and spectacular wisdom. Instead of letting it languish in that single moment in time, I want to make sure you have access to the tools and resources we discussed. Here’s how to access all that goodness.
I’m gonna resist the urge to be sneaky about it – so I’ll be blunt. I want single parents to get the resources they need to feel supported. I want family, friends, and community members to use these tools to become better accomplices. And I want all of you to support Revolutionary Humans by sharing their resources, joining the Revolutionary Humans community, and compensating Bellamy S. for the resources she provides for all. Our work is stronger when we partner with Revolutionary Humans, and you might find yourself feeling stronger in community with them, too.
While single parents of all genders, including single-non-parent caregivers, all deserve support, these resources skew heavily toward single mothers. Support looks different for everybody, but this is just what we know – we’re not equipped to swerve far out of the single mama lane. These are the tools we found most helpful given Bellamy’s life experience in parenting single, and in my experience being parented by a single mother.
Please do add comments with additional resources if you, as a single parent, have found solace or support so we can share all good things out.
You don’t have to do ALL OF THE THINGS, nor in any specific order.
Pick a call to action that feels accessible given your unique skills and abilities. Every step feels easier if you’re willing to just do the next thing, learn from it, and come back for more.
Share what worked for you in the spaces where people listen to you – the tools that help you raise kinder and more courageous kiddos, and which actions helped the single parents in your community survive and thrive.
Raising Luminaries(RL) & Books for Littles (BFL) is free and accessible for readers who can’t afford a paywall. Posts may contain affiliate links, which allow me to earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Check out the full affiliate disclosure along with the RL statement of accountability. If you’re into supporting libraries (please do!) more than consumerism, you can also support RL on Patreon.
Calls to Action: Watch
- Single Parenting in a Post-Apocalyptic Hellscape [1 hour, 4 minutes]* – Join Bellamy of Revolutionary Humans (a single mom) and Ashia of Raising Luminaries (raised by a single mom) along with a few members of our community in discussing how to build a stronger ties and raising kyriarchy-smashing kids through listening to and supporting single parents.
*Locked post: This is a temporary placeholder link accessible for Raising Luminaries members, until this video is accessible from the Revolutionary Humans website.
Calls to Action: Read and discuss with other adults
- Everything is Bullshit: A reality check for victim-blaming disguised as support, what not to say to newly single parents.
“No one was meant to parent around the clock and no one is designed to monitor children 100% on their own for all of time. It is beyond hard and exhausting. It is bullshit.”
- This is Unsustainable: An ebook full of essays to challenge assumptions on single parenting, kid-friendly activities, and affirmations.
- American Crucible: On divorce and single parenting as an immigrant in the US: An American Armenian Russian immigrant mother navigates life through financial debt, isolated across the world from her family, friends, and support community.
- Light in The Tunnel: Navigating stigma against multi-generational single grandparent, single parent, and single child family constellations and neurodiversity.
- The Mourning Doves: On single parenting and homeschooling a child with PTSD in a family created through transracial adoption.
- You Should Have Asked: Understanding the invisible mental load of mothers.
- How Stigmatizing Single Mothers Increases The Wealth Gap: A brief history of how the US weaponizes stigma against single mothers to block supportive legislation for families.
Calls To Action: Read and discuss together with your kids
- Triumphant Stories Honoring Single Mothers: Kids books that normalize and validate the experiences of single-mother families.
- Single Parent Family Constellations: Kids books that normalize and validate the experiences of single-parent families of all genders.
- Kids Books About Radical Community Interdependence: Stories and guided reading discussions to inspire pro-social thinking and foster interdependence with kids.
Calls To Action: Envision A Better Future
- Check out this playlist curated by Revolutionary Humans for Single Parenting in a Post-Apocalyptic Hellscape.
- Alone, or together with your kids: envision what a future where single parents are fully acknowledged, accepted and supported. Talk about how daily life would be different or the same.
- Cater to your unique whims and skills: Make your vision sensory.
- What does it look like? Make a vision board with magazine cutouts or a pinterest board.
- Sound like? Make a playlist.
- Taste like? What meals would you enjoy together? Make a menu.
- What would life be like without current challenges? Write a story together.
Calls To Action: Take Responsibility & Name It
Moving away from toxic independence to vulnerable interdependence is cool in theory, but hard to practice in real life. Get started with these worksheets created by Revolutionary Humans.*
- Download and set aside 8 minutes to figure out: What Can I Do For Me? [PDF]
Model healthy self-soothing and self-care for your kids – and so you’re less likely to do something you’ll regret when you’re overwhelmed.
- Download and set aside 8 minutes to figure out: What does ‘support’ look like for YOU? [PDF]
When shit hits the fan, we’re too frazzled to come up with ideas. Keep this worksheet handy for recognizing tasks you can outsource when you’re overwhelmed.
*These are placeholder links until there’s a product or activity page on the RH website for these. Until these are available on the RH site for purchase, please contribute what you can to the RevHum Tip Jar if you found these helpful.
Calls to Action: Brainstorm in your community
- Consider the places where you hold influence – PTO’s, company meetings, parent groups, book clubs, daycare feedback surveys, letters to your senators, dinner conversations. Where can you poke the bear and get people to start talking and adjusting policies?
- What assumptions do we need to dismantle to destigmatize single parenting?
- What systems do we need to put in place so every single parent has what they need to survive and thrive?
- Once you’ve identified a change that needs to happen, invite your kids, teachers, and community centers to create kid-friendly actions to process this ideas through art advocacy.
- For some ideas, check out these Free Action Toolkits by Revolutionary Humans.
[Image: Instagram post via Revolutionary Humans: Text reads “I am not weak, and I always need help” excerpted from the Single Parenting in a Post-Apocalyptic Hellscape event discussion.]
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Calls to Action: Follow & Listen
- Follow Revolutionary Humans on Instagram
- Subscribe to the free Revolutionary Humans email list (at the bottom of the page)
- Join the Revolutionary Humans community and/or support Bellamy on Patreon.
Stay Curious, Stand Brave, and Get Clear on What ‘Support’ Looks Like
And if you find my work helpful and want to keep it free & accessible for all – join our Patreon community so I can do my thing. But if your resources are limited – support the #FreeBlackMamas initiative first. My kids have two parents to support them – but through the Free Black Mamas Fellowship, we can support caregivers and children targeted by racist policing, unnecessary incarceration, and family separation that disproportionately affects single Black mothers and their families.
“Essie Justice Group’s 2018 report, Because She’s Powerful, found that nearly 70 percent of women with incarcerated loved ones are their family’s head of household and sole income earner. Additionally, the number of women incarcerated went from 8,000 people in 1970 to nearly 110,000 in 2014—and nearly two-thirds of incarcerated women are Black. “ …Read more