5 Days of Single Mom Homschooling Burn Out~TOS Blog Hop

by adustyframe ~ May 16th, 2012

Homeschooling is a big job no matter what your parenting situation is. Parenting is a big job no matter what your situation is.

Single parenting is really hard no matter where your children go to school. But homeschooling as a single mom? BURN OUT CITY!

How do you do it all? (Easy answer? You don’t!)
How do you balance housework, school, being a sane woman, and earning an income all with no other adult around to pick up any of the slack?

That is something I continually struggled with. I think there is no one size fits all answer.

Here are some things you can do if you are NOT a single mom but you know a single homeschooling mom– 

1. Check out my posts on how to help a single mom–Part 1 & Part 2

2. Don’t pressure her to homeschool like you homeschool.

3. Pray for her. Pray pray pray!

4. Encourage her when you see her children doing well. Tread very lightly when you think her children are not doing so well. Don’t criticize or offer “suggestions” before you stop and pray.

If you are a single mom homeschooling or considering homeschooling :

I shared my thoughts on not keeping it all together in this post.  Just realize you will not be able to do everything you want to do or used to do. I know it’s really hard, but you need to let go of the expectations you place on yourself.

1. Pray–ask God what His priorities for you home are. For me it was time with God, schooling my son, and supporting my husband (incarcerated) in whatever way I could.  Everything else had to move to the back burner almost all the time.

2. Consider giving up outside service and fun stuff IF it doesn’t support the priorities God shows you.

3. Find a support system–easier said than done but it really helps. My support system was my 2 sisters and my brother. Your support system should be composed of people who aren’t critical of your choice to homeschool!

4.Realize that you are just going to be exhausted–I don’t mean that to discourage you. Accept it and look for ways to add beauty and rest to your life. Parenting is exhausting no matter what but I learned that single parenting is bone numbing exhausting. There’s nothing wrong with you if you’re tired–you are doing the work of 2 adults 24/7 and it’s hard.

5. Examine everything in your life and think about what blesses you and what sucks the life out of you. Pray for wisdom so you know where to spend your time.

6. Give yourself permission to have easier days or days off. I don’t mean to always skip school but if you need to play hookie from school and go to the park then do it.

 I chose to homeschool my son even though my husband was incarcerated because he and I needed peaceful time to just “be” together. We had so much upheaval in our life and I wanted a quiet cocoon of peace around us to help us cope. Sometimes creating a cocoon of peace means you need to play hookie.

7. Don’t compare yourself to any other mother you know (single or married), any blog, or anyone you met on an internet forum. You are you–your kids are your kids and you are the best teacher for them no matter what.

8. Hang in there–people care about you! ((hugs))

I leave you with some words I shared during my 1st year of homeschooling as a single mom.

I still am tired. I still have to pray like crazy and hope that I’m making the right decisions in regard to the schooling choices. I have to have a lot of faith that God is going to continue to provide for us.  I still fight off the niggling feeling that I’m not doing it “right”

But then on days like today, I look at my son painting a pumpkin his sleeves rolled up, his eyes sparkling. I think about the 8 lines of print he read all on his own this morning. I remember the feel of his warm little body curled up next to me on the couch while we finished the last chapter of Stuart Little, read 3 library books, worked on Bible memorization, and read our Bible lesson.

I see his happy little body bounce across the lawn playing with the leaves and watch him as he attempts to climb  the tree.

This is a wonderful blessing and I will not worry what anyone else thinks about our choices. I don’t care if anyone thinks we’re not doing it right. If it bothers them that sometimes we skip our phonics lesson, oh well.

Because this being together and learning together and holding my family together is what God has called me to.

I will rise each morning praising him for this opportunity and when I think I’m not doing it “right” I’m going to remember that until my husband is released, I am doing this alone and if all we ever do is read great books and snuggle on the couch, we’re doing a very necessary thing.

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8 Thoughts Shared to 5 Days of Single Mom Homschooling Burn Out~TOS Blog Hop

  1. Laura Lane

    Thank you for sharing this. May God sustain you and other brave single homeschoolers. I cannot imagine doing it myself. You have my respect.

  2. Ms.B.

    Wonderful, wonderful post! Thank you for sharing this! I too am a single parent who home schools her kids. I am always amazed and blessed at the Lord’s provision for them. Like Abraham with Isaac, I have laid them at His altar many times. He has always given them back and renewed me to keep going. Your point about prayer for wisdom on what is necessary and what isn’t is such an important practice!

    No, our school has not been all that I wished it could have been – there’s only one of me, and I work many jobs. However, my kids are still light years ahead of the alternative, by His grace.

    The number one thing I learned to do is NOT COMPARE our school situation to any others! That includes being careful about how much home school bogging I read 😉

    Thanks again for posting on this topic these week!
    Blessings to you and your family!

    Don’t compare! So true even if you’re not a single mom but yes definitely!!

  3. Cristi

    Thank you for teaching me specific ways to bless a single mom that’s homeschooling! Many of your suggestions about single parent homeschooling could also pertain to spouse homeschooling through a military deployment.

    yes definitely!

  4. Diane Allen

    Lizzie,

    I’m bookmarking this to have it available to refer others to. We get a lot of questions about homeschooling for single moms on our local forum.

    The specific suggestions are great reminders.

  5. Jessica

    Hi! I just caught up with your blog and am so impressed. I think you are making a wonderful choice for your son. We will pray for you, your son, and your husband tonight!

  6. Cindy

    Glad to have found this website. My older daughters have been encouraging me to find a site like this to blog on. I too home school my three daughters and have been home schooling for about 25 years now. I has been rough going at times and has its moments. I am glad to be able to do this and am amazed at the opportunities we have had as a family even with single parenting. I will have to keep this site handy for inspiration and encouragement. Thanks so much.

    Sincerely,
    Cindy

  7. Marilyn

    I’m too is a single parent of two kids ages 11 and 8, I worked full time as a college instructor, I plan to homeschool my kids this year. I hope I can get many more tips in your blogs. Thanks

  8. Single Mom Times 4

    A blessing to read this! I’m a suddenly single mom of 4 and a college student myself! This was so inspiring for me. It’s going on my wall. God Bless!

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