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Single parents have their own set of unique parenting challenges, however there is no longer anything unusual about a single-parent household. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, as of November 2009, there were approximately 13.7 million single parents in the United States. A large majority of those single parents are women. This number has nearly doubled since 1970. People become a single parents for a variety of reasons, including divorce, death of a spouse and adoption. After a divorce, the children will usually spend most of their day-to-day living with one parent, the “primary caregiver.” However, the other parent continues to share parenting and responsibility, but both are considered to be “single parents.” If at all possible, it’s always considered in the best interest of the children to have both parents’ involvement in the parenting. In the U.S., any government financial aid, tax credits or related government sponsored assistance is given to the single parent who is the primary carer.

It’s often helpful for single parents to seek advice or the company of other single parents in similar situations. The internet can be a valuable tool in this case. There are all kinds of blogs and websites aimed at providing advice, support, resources and information for single parents. Many single parent online communities have chat boards where parents or pregnant women can talk with others in the same situation. Being a single parent can be very overwhelming at times, and sometimes just knowing you are not alone can be an enormous help. Parents in these chat rooms share parenting advice, cooking and recipe exchange, discussions about jobs and money, the frustrations of finding affordable and quality child care, and so forth. Just choose your favorite search engine and type in “single parent websites” and see what comes up! Everything from help and encouragement for teenage mothers, travel tips for single parents, to single parent societies and single parent dating sites are available. There are also many good single parent organizations available in most communities. A well known one is “Parents Without Partners.” Many churches also have organizations especially for single parents.


 


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