Must Love Kids: Tracy Paye Interview

by mssinglemama on July 18, 2008

One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations, even in the office. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring.

Wearing a fake ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us and more importantly, how she views herself.

Imagine a world where you, as a single mother, never feel shamed by anyone. It won’t be possible unless the single mothers themselves take on the little battles, tastefully and gracefully. And that is a cause worth more than any sale or any job. Yep. I guess I’ve become quite a passionate single mom and I’m definitely a dreamer. But I believe in every single mom because I know the strength we harbor and it’s a mighty one.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations, even in the office. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring.

Wearing a fake ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us and more importantly, how she views herself.

Imagine a world where you, as a single mother, never feel shamed by anyone. It won’t be possible unless the single mothers themselves take on the little battles, tastefully and gracefully. And that is a cause worth more than any sale or any job. Yep. I guess I’ve become quite a passionate single mom and I’m definitely a dreamer. But I believe in every single mom because I know the strength we harbor and it’s a mighty one.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on – now I can’t wait to see it.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations, even in the office. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring.

Wearing a fake ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us and more importantly, how she views herself.

Imagine a world where you, as a single mother, never feel shamed by anyone. It won’t be possible unless the single mothers themselves take on the little battles, tastefully and gracefully. And that is a cause worth more than any sale or any job. Yep. I guess I’ve become quite a passionate single mom and I’m definitely a dreamer. But I believe in every single mom because I know the strength we harbor and it’s a mighty one.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on – now I can’t wait to see it.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on – now I can’t wait to see it.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on in the meantime. Tracy Paye is fantastic.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
One of the hardest things about becoming a single mother is learning how to present that fact to the world. After all, every single mother was once a non-single mother who probably had stereotypes of her own about single moms. The stereotypes being that we are untrustworthy, unwanted and unreliable (amongst others). But in reality the single mothers I know are some of the most exceptional people I’ve ever met and capable of overcoming any challenge in their path. But a judgmental stare from a stranger or a co-worker can knock many of us flat. 

I’ve personally never experienced one.  Maybe I’m completely oblivious or maybe it’s because I’ve never looked for the stares. I’m not too concerned with the world outside of Benjamin and I’s little bubble. And it’s a very proud bubble. Why am I proud? Because I survived. I left my ex-husband when my son was just four-months-old and we made it. Now the dust has settled and my career is back on track, my son is thriving and I’m happier than I’ve been in years.

To hide that, to hide this part of myself to make a sale, impress a client or advance my career, by wearing a fake wedding ring would be a betrayal to myself and to the past two years of my life. Wearing a wedding ring to hide your single motherhood status means you must be wanting to hide from it yourself. On some level, that single mother must feel insecure about her circumstances or ashamed. 

During the first year I would present my single motherhood to people with a negative tone, my own stereotypes were coming through in my own descriptions of my situation. I never wore a fake wedding ring but I definitely explained my situation defensively and it was always shrouded in my grief and embarrassment. 

And then something happened. I took a look at what I was doing. Working a full-time job, raising my little one solo with little support from his father all while juggling the household, the bills, the doctor’s appointments. I realized that if I could survive this, I could survive anything…especially at work. I started changing my attitude internally and externally. And now my single motherhood is no longer an issue with myself, my friends, my co-workers or my clients. It’s just who I am. 

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. And it’s also dishonest. She may not be outwardly lying but it’s deceitful. A white lie, an inconsequential lie that will be forgotten and overlooked. But I see it as more than that. I imagine a world where every single mother (because there are quite a few of us) is proud of who she is. A place where she feels completely comfortable in any board room and never feels the need to wear a fake wedding ring. 

And that world will only come when each of us, today – now, take it upon ourselves to pave the way for our sons and daughters to live in a world without discrimination or judgements based on lifestyle or circumstance. It’s a lofty dream, I know – but I’m a dreamer.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations even in the workplace. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring or dodging personal questions. If you think you may not make a sale or connect on a personal level with co-workers or clients because you’re a single mom, you won’t. It’s all about how you see yourself. I used to be in sales. I still am in a way. I have to sell my skills to my co-workers and sell my creative ideas to clients. But the fact that I’m a single mother rarely comes up. They just know that I am a woman who is in that room to work and nothing else, because I have a son to go home to – a son whose life depends on me and how I perform at work.

My argument here is that when a single mother wears a fake wedding ring, she is wearing it – not for the others in the room – but for herself, to boost her own confidence. Which means she still feels ashamed on some level about her single motherhood. Until she throws away her own stereotypes about herself they will never go away. But when she does…she’s be free. Free from the stares, free from the snide comments – because they’ll disappear. Wearing a fake wedding ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us. And when you add all of those people up it equals a lot of people. And some day…maybe, if each of us changes our attitudes about single motherhood we might have a world where no single mother will ever feel like she has to wear a fake wedding ring in the work place to be treated equally.

I’m a dreamer, I know. And I’m also incredibly proud to be a single mother no matter where I am – at play or at work.
During my first year as a single mother I was ashamed. I felt weak. I didn’t know how I was going to make it. When strangers would ask about my son’s father after noticing my bare left finger I would explain my situation defensively. I left him. He was horrible. If it would have been any other man I would have stayed. I screwed up. And then something happened.

One day I was walking in my mother’s garden. I had quit my job in the city after leaving my husband and moved back to my hometown. I was back where I started with nothing. No money. Nothing. And then it hit me. If I can survive this (and I didn’t know how I would) I can survive anything.

And I did survive. Not only did I survive but I am now happier than I’ve ever been. I made it back to the city, landed an even better job than I’d had before and did all of it all while raising my son who is now two and a half. The fact that people judge me for my single mom status (and they do, you should read my hate mail) boggles me. I don’t even know what to make of it because I see single mothers as the strongest women on the planet, capable of achieving anything they put their mind to. We didn’t choose this path, but here it is and we make the best of it – day in and day out. And my attitude, this idea that being a single mom isn’t abnormal but exceptional, could be why I’ve never noticed a judgmental glare at work. Maybe people are throwing them my way and I’m not noticing…or maybe, it’s my outlook on my situation that is determining their reaction.

Take a proud happy single mom. Put her in a room full of judgmental people with conservative stereotypes. What happens? Do they silently find her unstrustworthy or incapable of doing a good job? Probably not. Take a single mom who internally feels that she should be judged, who judges herself. How does that same room of people react? Food for thought. But the American Psychological Society can back me up on this one. A study found that if individuals of stereotyped groups, like single mothers, are faced with multiple negative beliefs about their lifestyles than they are more likely to think negatively of themselves. It’s a vicious cycle. The negative self-fulfilling prophecy of “You’re a single mom and therefore you are (fill in the blank)” becomes stronger and spreads.

We have an uphill battle. But it’s a battle worth fighting and it’s not going to come in the form of a national single parent movement. (Although that would be kind of cool). The change is going to happen within ourselves. And that means that each and every one of us single mothers needs to be proud of who we are and face uncomfortable situations, even in the office. The judgments and stereotypes of single mothers will never go away if we hide from them by wearing a fake wedding ring.

Wearing a fake ring is a little white lie. A white lie that can be forgotten or overlooked. But to me, it’s more than that. It is a missed opportunity for a beautiful, successful and incredibly strong single mother to change a handful of people’s views about us and more importantly, how she views herself.

Imagine a world where you, as a single mother, never feel shamed by anyone. It won’t be possible unless the single mothers themselves take on the little battles, tastefully and gracefully. And that is a cause worth more than any sale or any job. Yep. I guess I’ve become quite a passionate single mom and I’m definitely a dreamer. But I believe in every single mom because I know the strength we harbor and it’s a mighty one.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on – now I can’t wait to see it.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on – now I can’t wait to see it.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on in the meantime. Tracy Paye is fantastic.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on – now I can’t wait to see it.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on in the meantime. Tracy Paye is fantastic.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.
I still haven’t seen the new Must Love Kids show on TLC … my neighbor is recording it for me, so this weekend I’ll catch it. Just had to pass this interview on in the meantime. Single mom, Tracy Paye is fantastic.

So what do you think about the forthcoming controversy Tracy expects as a fall out for introducing her 6-year-old daughter to the men on the show? I don’t want to say anything until I’ve seen the show but I do know that I love Tracy’s attitude – just another amazing single mom!

We are every where, I’m telling ya.

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The oddest day. « Ms. Single Mama
July 22, 2008 at 11:44 pm

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Dan July 19, 2008 at 8:44 pm

can you already please write your review? so I can decide if it’s worth 60 minutes of my life

Reply

mssinglemama July 20, 2008 at 12:07 am

Dan … I’m SO surprised you didn’t write “chirp, chirp” (crickets). Gauging by the comment response to this post I’m thinking no one has seen it yet – either that, or they have – and they hate it.

I’m watching it tomorrow during Benjamin’s nap time – unless, I take a nap too. : )

Reply

Dan July 20, 2008 at 3:19 am

i guess all the chicas are at something called blogher or sumthin. oh, no- no nap for you.

Reply

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