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This room is dedicated to those who are facing the challenge of raising children without the support of a spouse. This is a place to share ideas and lend mutual support.

Saint Rita is known to be a patroness for abused wives and mourning women.
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Single Motherhood?

Sep 16th 2012 new

So, a question for all...


What are your thoughts on a single woman in her mid-30s taking in foster children or possibly adopting children?


I ask because I am praying about it. I have a strong motherhood drive and would like children. Making every effort to live my faith, obviously, I will not be having biological children unless I marry. If marriage is not in a woman's future, yet she desires motherhood, should/could she be open to fostering or adopting? (Given, of course, that she is finacially stable and has family/community to help her as needed.) Thoughts? I would love to know what older men and women, especially parents, think about this. Would doing this in the future effectively "take me off the marriage market"?


Thank you!

Sep 16th 2012 new

Hi Nancy!

I've thought about it a little, but I've never felt called to it. I've been in contact with many foster kids through my job, and it's usually not a situation that a first-time parent finds ideal. However, that doesn't mean that a first-time parent wouldn't be great at it! :) I recently signed up to help mentor teens at my school who are homeless or in a transitional period. I always told myself that I would go and volunteer at Boys' and Girls' Club if I really felt the urge to adopt a foster child.

A childhood friend recently told me something that hit me like a ton of bricks. I'm a very involved aunt, and I feel I need to be there for them a lot (I know I haven't shared that really). She said she thinks I'm not married yet because God wants me to be what I am to them instead of having a family of my own to be preoccupied with. It still makes me think a lot. That had never crossed my mind before.

Sep 16th 2012 new

There have been a few women during my time here that either came on here as adoptive parents. Or adopted while they were here.. I see nothing wrong with it.. There are a lot of children needing mothering.. wink

Sep 16th 2012 new

Hi Tara and Donna!


Thank you both for responding! It is something I have been thinking and praying about for years! The possibility is a few years away, but I was curious as to what people thought about a single woman fostering or adopting. I know there are A LOT of considerations- things I REALLY need to think and pray about, for sure! Again, thank you for taking the time to think about the issue and respond!

Men, thoughts?


Single mothers, thoughts?

Sep 17th 2012 new
I had a friend in HS that was in a childrens home and we would hang out there sometimes after school. That place gave me the sads in a major way. sad

My home life was not perfect by any means but being there made me appreciate my family and the fact that I had a home to go to.

My point is that I think you would make a great foster mother! Most young people your age are still out partying and trying to figure out what to do with themselves and you are thinking about giving children a home! That alone tells me what an amazing person you are!!!!

Best of luck!!! heart
Sep 17th 2012 new

(Quote) Nat-846641 said: I had a friend in HS that was in a childrens home and we would hang out there sometimes after school. That...
(Quote) Nat-846641 said: I had a friend in HS that was in a childrens home and we would hang out there sometimes after school. That place gave me the sads in a major way.

My home life was not perfect by any means but being there made me appreciate my family and the fact that I had a home to go to.

My point is that I think you would make a great foster mother! Most young people your age are still out partying and trying to figure out what to do with themselves and you are thinking about giving children a home! That alone tells me what an amazing person you are!!!!

Best of luck!!!
--hide--


Nat, you are so sweet! Thank you!

Sep 17th 2012 new

Hi, Nancy!


I occasionally think about foster care and a great part of me really wishes I could give kid a good home too. Have you ever seen the old Cary Grant movie called "Room for One More?" If not, you should rent it and watch it! (it's not on Netflix, but is available on Amazon Instant Video) I think you'd like it (so long as you don't mind a movie from 1952). It's about a family who takes in a couple of foster kids, and it's really heartwarming. Every time I watch I wish I could make a difference like that too (even if the movie is a little idealized), so I definitely admire the generous spirit of your desire.


When I think about this possibility for me I think about a close relative of mine who was a single mom for a while, and I remember how incredibly difficult it was for her to be a single parent. She had the support of her parents and siblings (none from the kids' father, as he passed away, nor his distant family), and it was still tough. Having seen her experience close up, I don't think I could go through with actively choosing to be a single mom (as opposed to finding myself in this situation through circumstance- I would find a way to raise my niece and nephews in a heartbeat if something happened to their parents). Of course, if I won the lottery and didn't have to work full-time as I do now and didn't have to worry about being the sole breadwinner and caregiver I would certainly reconsider. :) And a friend tells me that she had a single friend in Japan who adopted and had lots of help from family, and according my friend everything went swimmingly.


Do you know any single parents? Especially single parents who do not have an ex-spouse who is involved with the kids? They may be able to give you a better perspective on what both regular and dating life are like.

Sep 17th 2012 new

(Quote) Nancy-838315 said: So, a question for all... What are your thoughts on a single woman in her mid...
(Quote) Nancy-838315 said:

So, a question for all...


What are your thoughts on a single woman in her mid-30s taking in foster children or possibly adopting children?


I ask because I am praying about it. I have a strong motherhood drive and would like children. Making every effort to live my faith, obviously, I will not be having biological children unless I marry. If marriage is not in a woman's future, yet she desires motherhood, should/could she be open to fostering or adopting? (Given, of course, that she is finacially stable and has family/community to help her as needed.) Thoughts? I would love to know what older men and women, especially parents, think about this. Would doing this in the future effectively "take me off the marriage market"?


Thank you!

--hide--
My initial impression is that children are best raised in a traditional family setting (i.e., husband and wife). With foster children, the situation can be different. There is typically a shortage of foster parents, so the children can be bounced around, never growing roots in a family setting. Considering foster children can be a noble idea, depending upon whose needs are being satisfied. Many people today are viewing children as a commodity, with the attitude, "I want one". The primary reason for becoming a foster parent in these cases is to satisfy their own needs instead of finding what's best for the children. One can become a foster parent for the wrong reason.

With adoption, there are difficulties as a single parent. That parents needs to fulfill the roles of both mother and father, while it is difficult to fufill only one of the roles. There is the added problem of adjustment, depending upon how old the child is. Past infancy this could be a realistic added problem to deal with.

I think a person needs to truly examine his/her desire to have children. The children should be the primary focus. In a stable environment, a single parent can be extremely helpful in nurturing a child. To be interested in becomming a foster parent or adoptive parent is a noble cause. But, putting the child's needs first, adoption is best considered after other placement possibilities aren't feasible.

Would taking in a foster child or adopting squelch your dating life and possible future romance? It could. Some people are able to see beyond that and your having a child would phase them. Others would bail out. A lot of guys enjoy children. It shouldn't be a major issue for te right type of person.

Before bringing a child into your household, do some research (public library) about the subject. Your personal motives need to be explored, plus you have to be willing to sacrifice your limited social time to devote to a youngster. It's not an easy road to follow, and we hope you have some support among your friends and family members that live close to her.

Sep 17th 2012 new

(Quote) Nancy-838315 said: So, a question for all... What are your thoughts on a single woman in her mid...
(Quote) Nancy-838315 said:

So, a question for all...


What are your thoughts on a single woman in her mid-30s taking in foster children or possibly adopting children?


I ask because I am praying about it. I have a strong motherhood drive and would like children. Making every effort to live my faith, obviously, I will not be having biological children unless I marry. If marriage is not in a woman's future, yet she desires motherhood, should/could she be open to fostering or adopting? (Given, of course, that she is finacially stable and has family/community to help her as needed.) Thoughts? I would love to know what older men and women, especially parents, think about this. Would doing this in the future effectively "take me off the marriage market"?


Thank you!

--hide--


Great question, Nancy!
I have been praying about the exact same thing ... adopting a child/ren that is.

Having been around children my entire life (formal teacher for 24 years, mentor, oldest sibling, Sunday school teacher for years, lifeguard, camp counselor in high school and college, tutor, nanny 24/7 for extended periods of time, babysitter, big sister programme, etc.), I know I am not cut out for being a foster parent without a husband.
Why do I feel so strongly about fostering with a husband? Most children and I tend to bond quickly. Foster children may live with one a short time or a long time ... no matter how long a foster child would be in my life, I know I would give him or her every bit of love I could as well as firm boundaries ... yet in the end, he or she leaves.

Adopting ... I have spoken to several priests and two of our bishops about this topic. All have known my family and me well. They have also observed me in action many times over the years as an active member of the parish (Sunday school teacher, RCIA nursery, Confirmation sponsor and retreat leader, Godmother to children who are not related to me, etc.) and as a teacher for the diocese's Catholic school ...
Four priests, one ultra ultra conservative Monsignor, a Bishop, and Archbishop ALL tell me to pray and it is an acceptable vocation for a single woman ... "As a single mother, you will have a difficult time ...but your parish community, large family, friends, and God will all support you and the children...." After advisement and prayer together, each asked if I needed them to speak with the priest who runs East Tennessee Catholic Charities!

Will adopting as a single lady take us out of the running as "marriage material"? ONLY if it is not the man God created just for each single lady (or man) who is prayerful considering adoption as a single lady (man) with dreams of a hubby (or wife) to complete the picture of a family unit.



Sep 17th 2012 new

(Quote) Laura-896845 said: Do you know any single parents? Especially single parents who do not have an ex-spouse who is...
(Quote) Laura-896845 said:


Do you know any single parents? Especially single parents who do not have an ex-spouse who is involved with the kids? They may be able to give you a better perspective on what both regular and dating life are like.

--hide--



As Laura mentioned, it would be great to see how a friend or relative handles being a single parent.

Here is a true but extreme story ... One of my closest friends in college (met because I was her daughter's pre-k teacher), struggled to put herself through school while raising a toddler/pre-k/ primary years girl. The father never paid child support. I was the nanny four half days out of seven days a week for four years so she could work out of town. I had medical power of attorney and school could call me about anything on the child.

While I was her nanny, I was also working on my undergraduate degree full-time, teaching full-time, caring for my grandmother, nannying another little boy every afternoon as well as my youngest sister's guardian Monday through Friday so she could attend Catholic High ... Needless to say, I was one busy girl. I managed to make my highest GPAs during this time frame, led a very very very active social life, hired my little sister to babysit one night a week while I took an evening course, my grandma babysat Friday nights after the little girl's dinner with us/ her bedtime routine / and she was asleep by 7:30. Saturday mornings and lunch were only for her. Saturday nights - dates came to my house and we had dinner with her and Grandma - cooking together as well as playing outside with her. The bedtime routine just the two of us and once she was asleep, the date and I would play board games with grandma or watch movies in my study. Nothing fancy but the men knew she came first and if they wanted to see me on Saturday night, they included her and it was at my house. And the most important thing besides prayer ... I lived by a colour-coded calendar! The little girl is now 24 and is a single mother with her own colour-coded calendar, nanny/friend, and loves every minute of it as she continues to put herself through college.


It is not easy to raise a child alone ... it takes prayer, commitment, organization, flexibility, team-work, definite boundaries with the child/ren, prayer, laughter, and many more virtues.

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