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Making the decision to split from your partner, especially when you have children, is a very difficult one to make. Becoming a single, young mother is terrifying. I don’t think anyone will tell you otherwise.

When my son was still young I came to the inevitable conclusion that my couple just wasn’t working. It had been a long time coming; years of rare ups and many, drawn-out downs. On some level, part of me knew that a split was inevitable, but it wasn’t a decision I wanted to make. After all, I didn’t have a job and had no idea what I would do or how I would provide for my son.

But one day, it just became too much. I was miserable, and it was making my son miserable. Life was no longer possible like that, so I made the decision to leave.

It was undoubtedly one of the most difficult decisions I ever made, and certainly one of the most difficult to uphold. But it was the right one and I never looked back or regretted it.

If this sounds familiar to you, and you feel you might be in a similar situation, then perhaps you are considering leaving your partner. If that’s the case, you might feel lost, unsure if this is the right move, or if you will later regret it.

I understand. So if this is something you worry about, here is a list of things you should think about seriously before you make any decision.

1 – How bad is it really?

Be honest with yourself; how long have you felt this way? Is it a temporary situation, due to some external factor? Perhaps one of you is in a bad phase professionally, or in a stressful situation that is going to change in a few weeks or months. So is this a temporary situation? Or has it been going from bad to worse for years without you realizing how bad it actually was?

You need to be extremely honest with yourself here. I know from experience that sometimes a bad day can make every single fight you’ve ever had come right back up to the surface, and make you feel like this relationship is just too much work. That there’s no way it should be this hard, that he doesn’t understand you and you don’t understand him.

And then a couple of days later it’s back to normal, and you wonder how you could ever have considered leaving him.

But if you know this isn’t the case, that this has been going on for longer and you know it’s not just a temporary issue, then you will need to ask yourself seriously if a split is the right decision.

2 – Is counseling possible?

If your answer to the previous question was that it’s been going on for a long time, and there’s no hope of it getting better, then you should perhaps consider counseling.

If you think that there’s still a chance, that there’s still something that can be fixed in your relationship, then perhaps counseiling is a good solution.

In order for counseiling to work, you both need to be committed to working on your relationship; it has to be a two-way street. If one of you isn’t even going to try, then it’s doomed from the beginning.

However, even if one of you isn’t willing to try, it may still be a good idea to go for at least one session. Speaking to a professional may help you gain perspective and see things in a different light, so that after that session, you might both be willing to work on your relationship.

3 – Can it be fixed?

Even going for counseling can’t fix some things. Is what is breaking you apart a deep, permanent reason? Or is it more of an annoying, irritating something that can be worked on?

Some things that are in a person’s character are just not possible to fix. Perhaps you are too different on matters that are important to you.

Some disagreement may come from who you are deep down, not from what you say or what you think at a certain moment in time.

You know the saying “people don’t change”? I agree with it.

Yes, of course people can make an effort, try and change a habit here and there. But I don’t believe they can truly change who they are at their core.

If the two of you are incompatible on a core level, then it is my personal belief that there is nothing that will fix your relationship. It can be a truly devastating realization for a couple who was madly in love to come to the conclusion that this is the case, but it is, in my opinion inevitable.

And if this is the case for you, if you know beyond a doubt that you are not compatible at your core, then perhaps splitting sooner rather than later is best.

 

 

 

 

 Take the time to think things over, and envision your life as a young. single mother

4 – Are you ready to do this on your own?

If you are in an unhappy relationship, then moving on might be the best, or even the only option for you. However, before you take the step, you should take some time to consider if you are truly ready for this, or if you should take some time to set things up so that things go more smoothly. (If you are in an abusive relationship, this, of course, does not apply to you! You should leave immediately, and get help).

There is much to think of, and I go into more depth about how and what you should do in another post (read more about the steps you should take when you leave your partner here), so here I will only talk about the emotional aspect.

Being a single mother is difficult, and even more so when you are young. People will undoubtedly judge you, perhaps even say that you are ruining your child’s life. But if you have thought about the previous points in this post carefully, then you know, deep down, that this is not the case. It is a well thought-through decision, and in the long-term, the right one for you and your child.

So be prepared

You know it is right, but it won’t make it any easier. Be prepared for comments. And be prepared for life as a single mother in itself. It is hard.

You will be lonely, and you will have moments when you question whether this was the right decision. You will need to learn how to do it all on your own, how to work, cook, clean, buy groceries, do the laundry while raising your child and somehow finding the time to play with him and bond.

It will take time to manage all of this, but you will. Especially if you take the time to carefully think things through, and have a plan.

Related: read my article about the steps you should take next, once you have decided to seperate from your partner, here.

In the end

You know what’s best for you and your little ones. If you feel like a separation is the only solution, then I firmly believe that you are right and that it needs to be done. If, however, you are now feeling lost as to what needs to be done next, then read my article about what you need to do when you seperate from your partner here.

Very often I hear that “people just don’t try anymore”, or that “they take the easy way out”. I disagree. Making the decision to split, especially as a young mother, if a very difficult decision to make. It takes unbelievable strength and courage to go through with it.

I also strongly disagree with the term “broken home”. A child living with parents that hate each other will be much more miserable than a child living with two happy, single parents.

Don’t forget this. Splitting is not a selfish decision, or the wrong one for your child. It can be a very selfless decision, and the right one for your child.

You are the only one who knows; listen to your gut.

This decision can be impossibly scary, so talk to someone you trust about it. If you feel like there’s no one you can talk to, then reach out to me! I’m a real person, and I promise I will get back to you.

 

Making the decision to be a single mom is scary, but you can do it

In the mean time, take care!
Lots of love,

Jen

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