My fears as a special needs single parent

My fears as a special needs single parent

Being a parent is scary. Being a single parent is even scarier. Being a single parent of a child with special needs – its ___________(fill in the blank) Emotional, scary, tiring, lonely, joyful, rewarding, painful, exhausting – Take your pick!

It is such a mixed bag of emotions that it is hard to pick one verb. One of the things I often feel is fear. I think any parent, special needs or not can relate to that. Once you have children, you fear things on a more intense level, because you now have others depending on you, depending on your health, depending on your finances, depending on your strength.

I must say I didn’t envision being a single parent – it wasn’t planned that way, but it happened. And in the ‘now’ I am dealing with it – but sometimes when I have a quiet moment to think, I think about our futures and a fear grips me.
I won’t always be here. That’s a scary thought in itself but even scarier when you have a child with additional needs- who’s future, like everyone’s is so uncertain.

My Fears:

1. That I’m not doing enough to help her develop to her fullest potential.

2. That she one day resents me as she has been through all the ‘hard stuff’ – physio, hospital, learning things she finds challenging and disciplined by mainly me – but all the fun stuff being spoilt, days out a fun sleep overs – with daddy!

3. I worry about meeting a potential partner – will he be cool I have a child? Will he be fine with all the attention she gets? What if we have other children? What if I have another child with needs?

4. If I had additional children would I still be able to give her my all? – is it fair to have more.

5. Who will be there for her when her dad and I are elderly and not able to look after her 🙁

6. I worry about my future – how can I achieve more while still giving her me?

So off the back of my list of fears I thought I had better plan some actions to alleviate my fears

1. I emailed her dad and passed on my fear! Always good to have someone else as scared as you! Lol

2. I sat and thought of all the things, appointments, classes, activities I have done and will do with her to reach her fullest potential and breathed a sigh of relief as I am doing my best – and that’s all I can do.

3. I joined up to and said I was looking for a man, who wants to get married , have children quickly and I am a stay at home mum. – Put it alllll out there loool – the Universe will bring me that man!

4. I thought about getting a Will drawn up and get a savings account set up – with instructions as to how she can be supported if I am not here.

As depressing as that sounds – it is actually the best thing I can do for her, G is going to thrive and be a beautiful, independent successful woman and won’t even need the savings (Hooray for my retirement fund!) but I will rest a little easier knowing a plan is in place for her )

5. I decided to start this blog- give myself an outlet, create a space for me to remember some of the things I have learnt and maybe pass on some information to others in a similar situation. No one plans to be in this situation and you are never prepared. I hope in time the blog can create opportunities for me to meet others, go places and fulfil some personal goals. Time will tell.

My other fears well only time will tell if and when those opportunities arise. I pray for a family for G and I, as well as other children but I will see how that pans out! I think I will do a separate blog about how this dating goes!

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20 thoughts on “My fears as a special needs single parent

  1. Sounds like you are putting some great plans in place. I am also a special needs mum but I’m not single although I have been in the past (although not to a special needs child). Single parenting is really hard but so rewarding as you get to take all the credit. Ha ha! But even now that I am married my biggest fear is that we’re not doing enough to help him reach his full potential. I think all parents feel like that though so what you are feeling is perfectly normal.

    I hope you get to meet the man of your dreams and have more kids soon and if you just so happen to have another child with special needs then so be it. You’re an expert now even if it doesn’t feel like it sometimes 🙂


  2. Wow. You really put your heart and soul into this article. I am just 18 year old right now, but this gives me a good example as to how the parents take care and also the fears that you shared. Great Article 😀

  3. This is a really brilliant, heartfelt post. It is impossible for me to really understand what you are going through, as I am neither single, and don’t have a special needs child. However, you described your fears so eloquently, I could really feel how challenging this all is for you, and I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I often panic when I think about what would happen should I ever end up a single parent, so I can relate to this in the best way I can. However, your solutions are so practical, and so good, that I felt relief for you when I’d finished reading them! Good for you for putting out there exactly what you want on the dating site-I’d love to hear how this goes! And making plans, and securing your child’s future must make you feel so much calmer. Good luck with this journey, and thank you for sharing this with us at #bigpinklink, I look forward to reading more of your posts.

  4. I think the fact that you are worrying so much and also doing something to try and alleviate the worry already shows what a good job you are doing because you obviously care so much! I’m not a special needs parent but I have a sibling with special needs and one of the things I always try and get my parents to do is cut themselves some slack every now and then – although it’s so important to think about your child and put them first, make sure you think about yourself every once in a while too!
    Amy xx

  5. You have done a great job by starting the blog. It might help someone else too. I wish you all the best for the future. I know you are strong and you can do it. Please bring a smile on your face now.

    Fatima |

  6. I grew up in a family with 5 children, 1 of whom has special needs and with a single parent. You’re doing EVERYTHING you can and you’re doing amazing. As a special education assistant myself, I tip my hat off to all parents who have children with special needs. Just keep on keeping on. You’re doing great 🙂

  7. It is scary being a single parent. ( I’ve been there.) and it is super scary being the parent of a special needs child. ( I’m there now.) I so feel for you and relate to many of your fears, although I’m not single now and wasn’t single with my special needs child. All of your fears seem so normal, at least to me! Keep prioritizing, taking care of you and doing the best that you can in caring for your child, that’s all the world can ask – that we do the best that we can.

  8. Response to fear number 5 she will always have me and S. Always will be apart of our family ☺❤

  9. Well done for battling those fears and facing them head on. My brother had severe autism and though my parents were together they still found it extremely difficult and worried sick about who would look after Connor when they grew old. Sadly, my brother passed away 5 years ago, but we wish we had him here along with all those worries rather than him being gone. 🙁 Thanks for linking up to #MarvMondays! Kaye xo

  10. Why not share the stress, good on you 🙂 I think your list of positives/actions are brilliant and a greta way of reassuring yourself you are doing everything you can do and a brilliant job at that. I hope that brings you your special man soon :). Thank you for joining us at #BloggerClubUK hope to see you again this week.

  11. Nadine keep going and keep your chin up love,i am going through all the emotions you describe with my nine yr old autistic son.With out being insensitive you either sink or swim,if you give up who will look after your daughter.Your not alone.(yes im split from my wife).

    1. Not insensitive at all! Its is true and I try and keep swimming everyday – somedays are harder than other days. I have to remind myself of the small group of people who do emotionally help and cheer me on from the side lines. Lets keep Swimming Daz 🙂 x

  12. Yes I know having a child with special needs is hard but you talk about going onto ? seriously don’t waste your time and money.
    Every waste of time date is waste of time with your child. Been on match and 5 years later same profiles its a scam waste of money. You only get one Chance with your child so make that your priority. Yes it’s difficult but that’s the card you were dealt with so deal with it and be there to shape and mould your child with love and support.
    Why do you need a man in your life? Do it by yourself and you can. Put your child first not you.
    Yes Sounds harsh but your child will be little for such a short period of time I am older but my child and their happiness is first before any man it’s a sacrifice that has to be made.
    Quit match put the child first it will reward you in the long term xx

    1. Btw my partner died suddenly and unexpectedly leaving me to pick up the pieces. Children and their happiness should be first priority. Wishing you all the best it’s difficult but you can do it .

    2. Thanks Marie, your bluntness did make me laugh, but it is true children need to be a top priority. Im doing a pretty great job of dealing with the cards I have been dealt but would like someone to share my life with – who knows when and how that will happen though. Match is an option 🙂
      Sorry for your loss, you strike me as a woman who has had to deal with a lot too, thanks for your well wishes x

  13. I just got a little teary at work reading that. I respect how honest and heartfelt you are. I was alone with Leo until a few months ago and really understand that ‘what happens if something happens to you fear’. Especially if your little one has additional needs. When you are having crappy trying days then there’s a willing ear to listen with me any time. I had the opposite when I was little as both my mum and brother have special needs and I was a young carer and there is a fair bit more strain. You sound like a loving and dedicated mummy and I hope you can be kind to yourself and recognise you are awesome xx

    1. Ah thank you so much I really appreciate your comment and kind offer 🙂 you could regret that as I have been told I talk a lot lol. I guess we all have that deep fear about if we leave our children, we just want them protected, always. That must have been extremely hard being a young carer I can’t even imagine how that must have been, I take my hat off to you it must have made you grow up fast. Thank you for the ‘Awesome’ reminder I do often forget lol x

  14. You have done so much Nadine. I once got some great advice from a lovely health professional. He said don’t look too far in the future just focus on what he needs now and in the immediate future. I am so glad I listened to that advice as things haven’t worked out as I expected at all. I think your blog is a great outlet for your feelings and for support. That is also why I started blogging. Have you looked into support groups in your area too? TY for linking up with #FamilyFun 🌸

    1. That is actually really good advice, takes away some of the worrying. Blogging is a great outlet for me as don’t find the time to join these support groups! x

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