Effects of Single Parenting on Children

Times are changing and so is the traditional two parent family.
Single parenting has become more common today. People used to stay together for their children much more in the past, even if they faced marriage problems.

Marriages dissolve much more often now and more and more people are taking on the challenges of single parenting.
It isn’t easy to stay in a relationship that has problems and in fact quite common to just give up and walk away from the relationship. However, parents need to know about and consider the effects of single parenting on children.

This article is written for those who are already single parents  and for those  who know they will be soon..

Children who live with a single parent are often affected by the pressure one parent is under to handle all the day to day tasks of parenting.

Often, the family’s financial situation can change for the worse and there can be long lasting psychological effects on the children of a break-up.

It is very common for children to think it must be something they did to cause the break-up so they can carry feelings of guilt and shame.

Self Esteem:

A child can lose a sense of who he/she is when the family splits apart. He/she is in unfamiliar territory, having to become accustomed to new arrangements and rules and possibly their parents other partners.

This, coupled with feelings that he/she may somehow be responsible for what happened can lead to low self-esteem.

Low self-esteem can manifest in a variety of different ways including poor school results, mood changes and loss of spontaneity

Financial Support

Raising a child as a single parent can be challenging financially. This is especially true if the single parent is getting no financial support from their ex partner. Often having been used to two incomes, it can be really hard to meet the needs of parent, child and general household expenses on one salary.

The tension and worry produced by this situation is felt by the child even if the parent is careful not to discuss it in front of him/her.


When a single parent hasn’t had the opportunity of a good education, they are often not able to get jobs that pay well. This can impact the child because the parent may have to work longer hours away from the home to provide a living.  The parent may unintentionally neglect supporting their child with his/her school work at a time when the child needs the extra support to cope.

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