Single/Widowed/Annulled/Divorced Moms - I need your help!


Thank you all so much for the help last week on the topic of parenting with adopted and special needs children – what beautiful insights you all shared with me! Many of your thoughts have found a home in my chapter and will go on to bless other moms!

This week, I am writing about single parenting – either moms who have always been single, divorced/annulled marriages, or widows. I would love to hear from any of you who face the difficult challenge of being a mom on your own – how do you nurture yourself spiritually, emotionally and physically with all you have on your plate? What special considerations do you face? What words of wisdom would you give to other moms?

As always, I appreciate your comments and support and will definitely protect your anonymity if I use one of your comments. Thanks, in advance, for any insights you can share!



About Author

Lisa M. Hendey is the founder and editor of and the bestselling author of the Chime Travelers children's fiction series, The Grace of Yes, The Handbook for Catholic Moms and A Book of Saints for Catholic Moms. As a board member and frequent host on KNXT Catholic Television, Lisa has produced and hosted multiple programs and has appeared on EWTN and CatholicTV. Hendey hosted “Catholic Moments” on Radio Maria and is the technology contributor for EWTN’s SonRise Morning Show. Lisa's articles have appeared in Catholic Digest, National Catholic Register, and Our Sunday Visitor. Hendey travels internationally giving workshops on faith, family, and Catholic technology and communications topics. She was selected as an Elizabeth Egan Journalism Fellow, attended the Vatican Bloggers Meeting, the “Bishops and Bloggers” meeting and has written internationally on the work of Catholic Relief Services and Unbound. Hendey lives with her family in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Visit Lisa at for information on her speaking schedule or to invite her to visit your group, parish or organization.


  1. i just wanted to say that yes it can be difficult being a single parent, i have been on my own now for about two years, raising 5 young ones aged 1 year to seven years, the youngest a little girl with four wonderful older brothers, i have realised that it is so easy to take for granted that second set of hands to hug a clingy baby while im preparing dinner, that extra 5 minutes needed to wash your hair, someone to help when your really sick, or just someone to chat to when the childen have gone to bed, i really miss these and many other little perks.
    But it is amazing how i have adjusted to these circumstances, God watches over us and gives me the patience to raise, guide, love and school my children by myself, im so greatful for the life ive been blessed with.

  2. I am mom to six. Widowed for seven years. My kids were 21-5 when he died. I have homeschooled for 20 years and by the grace of God I continue to do that. Nurturing for mom is limited and sporadic. I had a hands on husband who died suddenly in a car accident. I am amazed at what we have accomplished so far. God is good.

  3. Being a single mother is tough, but by far the most challenging part is trying to raise a child with a non-Catholic ex-husband who has remarried another non-Catholic. I struggle to bring my daughter to Mass every other week, and we had to change parishes to find a Religious Ed program that could accommodate us (her father won’t bring her to classes or Mass.) I pray for strength and understanding all the time. However, I’m wracked with guilt, knowing that if she’s sick one of the weekends she’s with me, she only goes to Mass once that month.

    Aside from the co-parenting difficulties, it is hard to face the stigma of being a divorced single mother who is still involved in the Church. When I was teaching CCD, I actually had a gentleman ask me, “Do they really let people like you teach CCD?” It was hard to bite my tongue!

    My mantra: Godhasaplan.Godhasaplan.Godhasaplan.Godhasaplan.Godhasaplan.

    🙂 Have a great day!

  4. Liz,

    I completely agree with your mantra and I’ve repeated the same many times myself. I am a single mom to two wonderful boys. I’ve been divorced for 10 years now from the father of my first son. My ex is not involved at all and we haven’t seen him in 9 years though he does pay child support when it’s enforced. My second son was born from a relationship where I thought I would marry him, a Catholic, but found some very disturbing information and decided it was best not to be involved with him. He is also not involved with my son. This is not how I thought my life would turn out. All I ever wanted was to be married and be a mom. God has a plan. It’s not for me to know and I’ll just keep following along with whatever He lays out for me. As for the question, I rarely get any time to myself, I consider work a retreat 🙂 Church is such a blessing to me and it helps tremendously to take the stress out of my life but just remembering that no matter what, God loves me and my boys and He will be a father to the fatherless helps me to get through everyday.

  5. I am a single mom to four (3 boys and 1 girl). As of September of last year I became a full time working mother of four. My ex husband left me for another married woman. He sees the kids on his weekends and sometimes during the week for dinners on Weds. The hardest thing for me is to help my children understand all of this from a Catholic perspective. Two years ago I was a stay at home mom, homeschooling her children and loving the life we were living in what I thought was a happy and holy family. Although my husband turned out to be far from holy he is still the father of my children. I struggle with explaining all of this to my children who really understand their faith yet still love their dad even though he has gone astray. My children range in age from 14 to 4. The older two really understand what has happened realistically their dad chose another path which takes him away from them. I focus on them that this is a sin their father is battling and he really needs our prayers. The younger two 4 and 6 boys, seem to have a harder time understanding due to their age. Every now and then they ask will dad ever be able to come home, as if it was my decision. It is so hard to explain to them that their dad chose someone over their mom to be with and is caught up in a sin. They love their dad so much and worry for him both physically and spiritually. Sometimes I find myself angry and lax in my prayers for him when I still should be storming heaven for his conversion. I look at my crazy life now as a Kindergarten teacher full time and single mom as the polar opposite of anything I ever dreamed of. I do know that God has a plan for me and my children. I just wish I had more time to talk to him and ask for his grace and guidance in all of this. Prior to all this happening I went to daily mass with my children, weekly adoration, weekly confession, etc. I was so involved in my church and its daily activities (now in a new parish, I just do not know where I fit in???) Now it is just a blessing to get to mass on Sundays as a family. It does not seem enough and often my life feels like there is never enough time for God, my children and least of all for myself. My prayers are usually short and are cut off by sleep each night. I try to say a morning offering each day to offer everything to Him but there are days that I complain and rant about all that I am facing and forget that I offered it all to Him. I do like the mantra “Godhasaplan!” It is true I just need to slow things down a bit and listen to Him like I used to be able to do.
    I am so glad I found this site…..

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