Happy Single Mother’s Day

Dear money management expert

Thanks for contacting me on the weekend, especially on the eve of Mother’s Day, so kind of you to point out how little superannuation I have in my account. I know I’ve told you many times that I’d chat to you about investing my massive amounts of leftover money, but my kids like to eat and I really like paying my bills. I am working, I mean just take a look at my CV:

I’ve done infomercials for washing machines
I’ve got a draw full of great articles featuring me from really (well, they were once) prestigious newspapers, I’ve actually been in the papers since I was 18 months old
In 1999, the Sydney Morning Herald said I was an upcoming new comic

I made the choice to work in the arts not in finance, but it’s OK, Joe Foot In Mouth Hockey convinced me to get a good job, instead of working in lowly positions in the artistic world. And big Mal Turnbull has made me realise I should just ask my mother to buy me a house, so my money problems are solved.

Happy Mother’s Day to all financially challenged single mothers


I’m moving to China

China’s singletons celebrate Singles Day (or ‘bare sticks’) as an alternative to Valentine’s Day on November 11 — or 11/11, the date representing all the lonely people. Being single on Valentine’s Day is a big problem in China, where there are millions more men than women because of the country’s one-child policy. Sitting on the bus with no one beside me is fun, but I’d love to celebrate being alone with other sad singles, is anyone throwing a blind date party tonight?


Creepy

Some people say that Halloween is too American and shouldn’t be celebrated in Australia, but Halloween is a great day for single mothers. Our kids get spoilt with kilos of sugar and other people pay for it. On October 31, kids of single mothers are also being trained to beg in the streets. In the past week I’ve encouraged my youngest to stop brushing her hair so she’s perfected her poor urchin look.

I really wanted my teenager to have a happy costume for Halloween, so I dressed her in a white shift dress and painted a big red line down the middle of her face. Most people don’t guess that her costume is a negative pregnancy test.

Then I decided to scare my ex when he turned up to pick up the kids on Halloween evening so I’m wearing a t-shirt saying Real Men Pay Child Support.

Happy Halloween, bring on the treats.


Single Mother lexicon

A is for Attitude. You’ll develop it after years of single motherhood

B is for Breeder’s regret, as in I picked him to be the father of kids? What was I thinking? Breed with a man not a boy

B is also for Bribery, a helpful device in the single mother tool kit

C is for Can I share custody with this man in five years time?

D is for Don’t know how you do it, translation: I don’t want your life, it looks too hard

E is for End of summer, a day celebrated by single mothers whenever children go back to school after months of holidays

F is for Frustration, i.e. speaking to any government department about collecting money for your kids from your children’s father

G is for Glamorous, what single mothers become when their offspring visit their father

H is for Halloween, lots of free lollies for your deprived children

I is for I’m a single mother this week, what coupled up ladies say when their partner is away for more than two days

J is for “Just wait ’til you become a mother.” Frequently said by single mums to their kids

K is for Know It All Children AKA other people’s children

L is for Long ago and far away I used to be young, free and sassy

M is for Mothering Monday, the second Monday in May. Easily the best day to receive bargain flowers, soap and sympathy. Boxes of sweet fancies go cheap on this day.

N is for No money until pay day

O is for Oh My God, tinned spaghetti again?

P is for Perfect families, fictitious people who make children of single mothers envious

Q is for Queen of budgeting

R is for Red Cordial, what you give your kids when they’re going to meet your ex’s new girlfriend for the first time

S is for Sanity, what you lose when you become a single mother

S is also for Schooligan
The little rat in your kid’s class with parents who insist their child is a saint

T is for Teens, the beasts your kids turn into before they become lovely adults who thank you for your sacrifices

U is for Unbelievable, the amount politicians think you can live on

V is for Vinnies, the clothing boutique of choice for most single mothers

W is for Wild side, staying up past 10pm on a school night

W is also for Would, as in I would talk to my ex but I don’t speak moron

X is for Exhausted, permanently

Y is for Y did I choose to live like this?

Z is for Zone Out: what single mums do when married breeders talk about their cleaner


10 Single Mother Truths

1. You hear the words ‘insufficient funds’ on a daily basis and it doesn’t freak you out; and the words ‘transaction approved’ make you jump for joy

2. The word you use most when talking to your girlfriends is ‘overwhelmed’

3. Parenting is all about selling options to your child. Single parenting is begging for the sale for your sanity

4. After wondering why your shopping seems a bit cheaper than usual, your day is made when you get home and discover the checkout person hasn’t swiped five of your most expensive grocery items

5. You lie awake at 3am wondering if you should go back to the shop so you don’t get charged with shoplifting. The thought that your children only have one parent weighs heavily on your mind

6. If your children go to their father’s every second weekend, your house is clean 26 times per year

7. Your children develop a sudden fondness for whichever fruit costs $28 per kilo (because it has to be airlifted from Belize) and be invited to four different children’s dress up parties around the time that your hours at work get cut back

8. Disneyland Dad suddenly has money for fancy restaurants with his new girlfriend while you struggle to find ‘imaginative’ recipes in the ‘700 Ways With Baked Beans cook book for dinner every night

9. The words tax refund cause you the same excitement as the words ‘Saturday night and it’s time to partay, get your disco boots on’ did a few short years ago

10. You have to be physically restrained from strangling your 20 something male stoner neighbour when he tells you he’s exhausted because he woke up early to get a surf in before he took his girlfriend out for a late brunch


Single mother club

I am a member of an association I didn’t want to join. A card carrying crazy haired mummy in tracksuit pants, wearing bare feet, I am doing single motherhood the feral way. According to studies, single motherhood is not a pathway to physical nor mental wellness, more like emotional chaos.

My family was way ahead of the trend when it comes to single mothering. My paternal grandmother and my maternal great grandmother were both single mothers way before it became fashionable. When I am exhausted I think of my dad’s mother raising two children on her own in the 1930s and 40s, a time when single parenting was not chic. She couldn’t open a bank account nor get a loan because she had no husband.

My mission is to share the joys of single parenting. I don’t mind being single, it’s the single parenting I struggle with. My friends tell me I should be looking for the next man I’m going to break up with, but right now I think it is

Better to be alone than in bad company

I don’t want to be a single mum cougar, ogling young men on a Saturday night. Young men who are emotionally living on another planet. And their taste in music is appalling. I don’t want a grandpa either, I’m not that desperate.

But I’m sure I’m not the only single smother who behaves like a debauched old tart when the children stay at their father’s girlfiend’s place.

I don’t like to bash men on my blog, just tenderise them…


Children of single mothers

According to some pop psychologists children of single parents grow up to be criminals. Great. My girls can start shoplifting some high quality items from David Jones, I am sick of eating baked beans.