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Talk Back

A Message To The Bitter Single Mother

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Let me begin by saying that I am not an expert on many things, least of all parenthood. I have no idea the amount of sacrifice, investment, growth and sheer fear of the unknown that goes into basically allowing your heart to walk outside of your body. So, as I’ve said many times before, you parents have earned your rank as having the hardest career in the world: raising the youth of today.

On any other day, my Rah Rahs are reserved for single women, especially those that for whatever reason, have managed to pull double duty in the parenting realm, i.e., those that are there to blow kisses on boo-boos, wipe away the tear stains, check for monsters under the bed at midnight, and still pull themselves together for their 6 a.m. wake up calls for work.

For many of you ladies, you weren’t expecting to do this alone. You had a plan. You and he were supposed to be in this thing together, and despite what the statistics would say, you guys were set to make it happen. And when that dream ended—maybe he changed, maybe you realized he wasn’t who you hoped he would be—you were stuck trying to piece together an ideal that never came to fruition. You were alone with a world of responsibility. Truth is, that would make even the kindest soul a little bitter. I get it.

But let me say this: if that man who you willingly laid down with, built dreams and seeds with wants to play a part in his child’s life, s*** ain’t about you anymore. It isn’t about your bitterness, or why he did x, y, and z in your relationship because your relationship is dead and at some point, you’re going to have to put on your big girl panties and realize that your child takes precedence over your hurt feelings. It is YOUR responsibility to give that child an opportunity to know their father, just as it was YOUR responsibility to choose who you would allow in your life so intimately.

I’m tired of hearing women equate parenthood to a paycheck. You knew he wasn’t Rothschild rich when you laid down with him, and now you’re expecting him to buy hover boards and Yeezy outfits on his call center budget to prove that he loves his kid? Stop! There are too many good men out there who want to take their child to the park, but can’t because their hateful ass baby momma won’t let them see their kid without some new J’s in tow. Parenting and paying to be a parent are not one in the same.

Now if you’re one of those women who decided to lie down with a man who already has five kids he doesn’t pay child support for, you better believe that there is nothing different about your vagina that is going to make him fork up payments for a sixth. And I hate to say this, but again, that choice is solely on you. At what point do you value yourself and your body so lowly to put all of your faith in a man who doesn’t understand what being a man is about? You’re the one that is going to have to carry that child. You’re the one that’s going to have to wake up in the middle of the night to breast feed. It’s unfair, it sucks, but it’s life, and you can’t complain about a man not taking care of his responsibilities as if he didn’t have a proven track record of irresponsibility. If you’re sleeping with a 42-year old man in his momma’s basement, on his momma’s futon and he is telling you that the five other women he previously impregnated were all crazy, don’t get in your feelings when he’s ghost the moment you miss your cycle. No, no, boo. You’ve got to see the signs and heed their warning.

Don’t expect a man to suddenly change for you because he won’t. And your inability to call someone on their BS before tadpole hits egg is a flaw in your expectations. If your only romantic dinner date came with a number to the right of it and a large fry, maybe you should start asking yourself if this is the type of man you want to be tied to for the rest of your life.

I’m not saying we don’t all have that one, or some guys that we would be a little cautious about splitting chromosomes with in our history books. Some people we only call between the hours of 11 p.m. and 2 a.m. for one reason and one reason alone. But you have to protect yourself from yourself. Take every bit of responsibility to make sure your one night doesn’t turn into one lifetime, because that is what it will be. Stop with the blame game. Stop with the Miss Independent, “my baby doesn’t need a father” bulls***. If there is one that is willing to fill that role, let them. And if the only reason you’re with that person is because he has pretty eyes, but he’s “between blessings” in the job market, you better do everything you can to make sure your 34-minute fling is the best and most protected one you’re going to have, or choose a different partner. Whatever you do, stop robbing these babies of an opportunity to see what a healthy parental relationship looks like. They didn’t choose to be here. You did.