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Single Moms Single Moms

Hoping to find single mothers in college to chat with.

Posted by on Feb. 24, 2013 at 11:10 AM
  • 15 Replies

Good morning! My name's Crystal. I'm a single mom of two and also a full-time college student. I'm working on a project for school about single moms in school, but I'm having trouble finding people to talk to. The deadline for my project is actually tomorrow, so I'm panicking! But I am very interested in this topic and hope to help make changes within my university so other single mothers don't struggle as I have. 

If anyone is reading this and would like to share any of your experiences or just vent about your struggles, I would be most grateful! :-) Thanks!

by on Feb. 24, 2013 at 11:10 AM
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Replies (1-10):
annas_momma
by Member on Feb. 24, 2013 at 11:12 AM
I'm a single mom and in school full time.

I am engaged, however we don't live together and only get to see each other on the weekends when we are both off work/school.
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hesmysun
by on Feb. 24, 2013 at 11:23 AM

So you can probably relate to a lot of the struggles I face. If you would be willing to share what you're experiences are, it would really help me out. I'm looking for areas such as - what your primary challenges are, do you feel that your school supports you as a non-traditional student, are you financially stable and do you utilize any available assistance, do you have enough emotional and physical support.. etc..? We're looking at what the main needs are for this group (us) and what programs or services might be able to help more single moms finish their education.

I have to go make lunch, but I'll check back in a bit. anything you may share will be completely anonymous (obviously) but it'll help me to validate what I'm saying the needs are based on my personal experiences.

Thanks!

Kid_Cat_Mom2005
by on Feb. 24, 2013 at 11:44 AM

I'm a full time, non-traditional student. The single most important thing is help with childcare. I get help from scholarships and loans, because I am not working, without the scholarships, I would be even deeper in debt. Emotional and physical support--there is a single parent adviser on campus, which helps some, also (open to all students) is free tutors and math help. Personally, I just keep on trucking, even when I get discouraged, because I have to finish this degree--for myself and my son. Hope this is some help to you--also, I go to a community college.

annas_momma
by Member on Feb. 24, 2013 at 12:14 PM
Luckily I have been blessed with a wonderful support system. My parents and neighbors have been the biggest blessing with helping to take care of my daughter while I am in class. If it wasn't for them there would be no way that I would have been able to make it this far. (I graduate next month!!).

Class it's self isn't hard at all, but homework is a constant struggle. Once I leave class I have to work. On top of that I am mom and have to give my daughter the time and attention that she needs. It is hard to find time to do or even complete my homework.

The school I go to is a small private technical college. The teachers are so wonderful, and do everything they can to help all the students. They give all the one on one help that they can to everybody there. Most of the students at our school are parents as well, single or not. I have seen many students drop out because they didn't have the support that I have had. They didn't have people that could help watch their child(ren). I know there are some colleges that have daycare programs for the students to use. I think it would be wonderful if more schools offered the daycare programs.

There have also been times that I have wanted to quit. But luckily I had enough people behind me that they refused to let that happen. Lol. We have a club at my school that the students put together. It is one where the students come together and help tutor, provide rides for students that don't have one, and babysit each others children if they need help with child care. They help give emotional support when things get hard as well. This club just started this quarter, but is making leaps and bounds. Maybe if the word gets out about this club it will grow and move across other colleges as well. They are so new they haven't even named themselves yet.

I use student loans and grants to pay for my schooling. I never ask for more than what will cover my classes because I know it is up to me to pay it back once I am out of school.
Quoting hesmysun:

So you can probably relate to a lot of the struggles I face. If you would be willing to share what you're experiences are, it would really help me out. I'm looking for areas such as - what your primary challenges are, do you feel that your school supports you as a non-traditional student, are you financially stable and do you utilize any available assistance, do you have enough emotional and physical support.. etc..? We're looking at what the main needs are for this group (us) and what programs or services might be able to help more single moms finish their education.


I have to go make lunch, but I'll check back in a bit. anything you may share will be completely anonymous (obviously) but it'll help me to validate what I'm saying the needs are based on my personal experiences.


Thanks!



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reynab27
by Member on Feb. 24, 2013 at 12:43 PM
I'm a single mom of four my main struggle is reliable childcare for studing and etc. since i know kids get sick etc and also the bby sitter has things to do to but then again this is just part of life and its unpredictable so i can only take it day by day right?
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hesmysun
by on Feb. 24, 2013 at 12:45 PM

Kid_Cat_Mom, I hear over and over that child care and housing are the two biggest issues facing single moms. Hearing you confirm that childcare is paramount to your success will be useful in my research. We're looking into single mothers at the local four year university and find that there is very little in the way of resources. It sounds like are having better luck at the community college level. Perhaps I can use that as a model for proposing changes at my campus. I think it's fantastic that you are sticking it out! I've been ready to give up about a dozen times in the last week... Knowing that other moms are struggling, but somehow make it helps me to stay strong and "keep on trucking" as you said :-)

Thanks for your feedback! I was wondering what services the parent advisor provides. Do they do counseling type services? Link you to other single parents? I'm also curious how you handle childcare? Do they offer affordable care at your school? I know lots of women who use state subsidized care, but there are numerous problems within that system also (and inconsistent availability). You mentioned scholarships. Have you been able to find enough scholarships to make the cost manageable? Any scholarships especially geared towards non-traditional students? Those seem to be more difficult to find than for traditional students... If you're willing to respond, I would love to have an idea of your age (18-22, 23-28, 28-32, 33-38, 39+) and also what part of the country you're in (or state if you're comfortable with that).

Thanks again! I wish you all the best! Hang in there when times get tough. I'm sure you're aware of the benefits to an education beyond just higher income. My biggest motivator is knowing that my level of education will heavily influence my children's level of education in the future. They will be much more likely to get their college degrees if their mother does. To me, that's a huge motivator!


Quoting Kid_Cat_Mom2005:

I'm a full time, non-traditional student. The single most important thing is help with childcare. I get help from scholarships and loans, because I am not working, without the scholarships, I would be even deeper in debt. Emotional and physical support--there is a single parent adviser on campus, which helps some, also (open to all students) is free tutors and math help. Personally, I just keep on trucking, even when I get discouraged, because I have to finish this degree--for myself and my son. Hope this is some help to you--also, I go to a community college.


 

hesmysun
by on Feb. 24, 2013 at 1:32 PM

Annas_momma, sounds like you have had great experiences at your school! I wish all single mothers could be so lucky! My school has tried to get groups started, but they haven't been successful in the past. Daycare is a huge problem, especially on bad weather days and sick days. So your school is very supportive of you and other parents? I get treated like the other young, traditional students and it's terribly frustrating. And I'm only a small percentage of our student body so finding others who are going through what I am is often difficult.

Thanks again for your responses! I wish you all the best and CONGRATS on your upcoming graduation!! Woohooo!

hesmysun
by on Feb. 24, 2013 at 1:39 PM

Day by day is absolutely correct. One foot in front of the other. If I look at how many more semesters or years I have, it's too overwhelming. I just focus on making it through each week and each assignment.. Childcare is the biggest issue I'm hearing about from other single moms.. Many find care for their time at school, but like you said, how do you find time to study? I struggle with that daily. And my children don't let me sit quietly to study for more than a few minutes at a time. Often I begin studying at eleven o'clock at night and I'm too tired to focus on it.

I'd be intersted in hearing more about your experiences if you have a few minutes. Maybe about your school and the services/programs they offer for student mothers. Is there a particular program that would help you succeed? Do you feel that your institution is concerned with your graduating? Are there any groups for single parents at your school? Or groups for non-traditional students? Is housing an issue for your or does your school help you with that in anyway? Another thing I've been hearing from other mothers is their motivation behind going to school. What keeps you going when things get hard? Are you trying to make a better life for you and your children? Is your future career something you're passionate about?

Thanks again for responding! And stay strong! You'll get there! 


Quoting reynab27:

I'm a single mom of four my main struggle is reliable childcare for studing and etc. since i know kids get sick etc and also the bby sitter has things to do to but then again this is just part of life and its unpredictable so i can only take it day by day right?


 

Robsessed98
by on Feb. 24, 2013 at 2:49 PM
There are a lot of us in college in this group. I chose online because of my schedule and the closest college is about 30 miles from here. Good luck.
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hesmysun
by on Feb. 24, 2013 at 3:09 PM

 

I was married to a soldier for quite awhile previously. I know many spouses who chose online education for similar reasons. My degree (social work) is typically not offered as a online programs due to all of the field experiences necessary. But I certainly understand why so many women go that route! We keep hearing about the feminization and juvenilization of poverty, but I can't see where much is being done to assist in educating single moms. I hope that someday my courses do more to propose changes for us and not just educate us on the problems.. I suppose as a future social worker, I'll be well equipped to advocate for change. Thanks for your reply!

Quoting Robsessed98:

There are a lot of us in college in this group. I chose online because of my schedule and the closest college is about 30 miles from here. Good luck.


 

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