Hearing about the negative effects of single parenting on kids, from economic hardships to abandonment-related trust issues can feel overwhelming. But what about the positive effects of being raised by a single parent? In the midst of raising your kids on your own, you might not think of your situation as a bonus, but there are some overwhelmingly positive effects of single parenting that deserve attention.
Resilience: The key to helping children develop a feeling of competence is to give them opportunities to master specific skills or strengths. Luckily, there are plenty of opportunities for skill-mastery both at school and at home. In a single parent family, your child most likely will have a task that’s a challenge for them initially—when you assign a complicated chore, ask them to help with dinner and give them a dish to complete or work with them as they try to master a set of spelling words. When they successfully complete the challenge, compliment them on their effort. Make sure you start small with challenges that your child can realistically accomplish at their stage of development. The sense of achievement they feel from successfully completing a challenge will convince them that they have the ability to meet new, harder challenges.
Compassion: It goes without saying that physically being present in our children’s lives provides them with a sense of security and structure. Our children are observing our every action and interaction. Treating others with respect demonstrates to our children that all people are important and deserve to be treated in a kindly manner. Treat your children with respect as well. Most importantly: single parents can model how to take of ourselves, and treat ourselves with respect.
Responsibility: Children raised in single-parent families don’t just have “token” chores to do in order to earn an allowance. Instead, their contribution to the entire family system is necessary. A genuine need for their assistance helps your kids recognize the value of their contribution and take pride in their own work.
Praise your kids for helping out around the home. Let them know you recognize their efforts. Expect them to contribute and be specific when asking them to help out.
Self-reliance: The truth is, if you want to raise an independent kid who can someday thrive (and survive) without you–and oh how I hope you do!–you need to show some restraint in the “lend-a-hand” department. Data shows that the 21st-century parenting style is a lot of protecting, rescuing, helicoptering, over-involving, micromanaging, and enabling and it’s not doing our kids any favors. Children from single-parent families most likely have to: Do chores and tasks on their own, with mostly just guidance from their parentFend for themselves in many situations, rather than have a parent rush to rescue them Learn organizational skills early on Learn how to negotiate talks and plan about the future
Problem-solving: Children in single-parent families witness conflict mediation skills in action. They get to see their parents working hard—despite their differences—to collaborate and work together effectively. In addition, the kids are forced to deal with their own disappointments early in life.
Respond to your kids’ disappointment with support, encouragement, and empathy. View these experiences as valuable growth opportunities, helping them become sensitive, empathetic, caring adults.You can’t always prevent your children from feeling sad or disappointed, but you can help them to express and cope with their emotions.
Creativity: How to raise creative kids? Do you believe that all these steps are part of everyday life in a single parent household? Check them out and decide yourself!
Make Mistakes. … Get Messy. … Offer Praise for Effort. … Be open-minded. … Model Creativity. … Step Back. … Set aside creativity time.