My First Year as A Single Mum at 17

 
 


Back in 2009 I fell pregnant with my first child at the age of 16 years. It was hard, worrying and pretty much scary but of course, I dealt with it and got through it! My daughter is now a happy, beautiful and confident 6 year old little girl. It has taken me a good few months to decide whether I wanted to post this on my blog but I thought it may help other parents who also have to deal with co-parenting and maybe a good post for those young mums out there too.

I gave birth my beautiful daughter at the age of 17 in December 2009. That day changed my life forever. But for the best. I knew I was going to be a single Mam from the day I found out I was pregnant, her Dad had moved on and was with somebody else 2 weeks before I found out I was 7 weeks pregnant. At the time, it hurt but when I look back, things happen for a reason and I am much happier where I am right now and wouldn't change my children or my partner for the world. I am happy.

I thought I would follow on from my popular post 16 and pregnant and let you all know how my first year as a single mother was and how I coped being a young single mum. This post is my true story.



My first year as a young single Mother
 
Mia's Dad came to see Mia for the first time when she was 3 days old. I remember that day clearly. I was in my dressing gown and looked pretty rubbish. I was in pain and feeling like crap too. The door knocked, but I thought it was the postman with a parcel. Mia was sleeping in my arms so I carried her with me to the door. It was her Dad. I was unsure how to feel. Anyway, I invited him in and asked if he wanted to hold Mia. He did. He stared at her and I had to walk out of the room and go into the fron room. In that front room, I burst into tears. I had gone through all that pregnancy by myself (with the help of my Dad). I was scared and now seeing Mia and her Dad together, it made me happy. I thought 'finally! he is stepping up!'. After clearing up the tears, I went back into the living where Mia and her Dad was. He didn't stay long. I think it was around half an hour or less that he stayed. He told me he would come up every Tuesday or Wednesday (can't remember which day it was now). I was pleased.
 
I was raised by my Dad. I saw my Mam occasionally but not very often. I didn't want that for Mia. I wanted her to have a life with both of her parents. I wanted Mia to grow up knowing her Dad loves her just as much as I love her.
 
 
The following week arrived. I got Mia ready for her Dad to come and see her. Hours passed by. I tried to text and phone. No answer. I tried the following day. I stayed home and did nothing but listen out for the door. Every time I looked at Mia I burst into tears because I felt guilty. I felt like it was my fault he wasn't coming to see our daughter. What did I do wrong? What did Mia do so wrong for her Dad not to want to see her?
 
The following week came, I tried calling and text again. All day. Nothing. In the end I realised he had changed his number or blocked my number. There was no way in contacting him unless I went through his girlfriend. But at that time, I didn't want his girlfriend to be involved with Mia. It was too soon, especially that he wasn't involved himself and everything that had happened during my pregnancy.
 
In the middle of all of the above I had mentioned, I had been going to Careers Wales every single week to look for a job. I started going when Mia was about 4 weeks old. I knew I wanted a job. I wanted to work and earn money for me and my daughter. After months of looking, I finally got a job when Mia was 5 months old. It was in a local nursery and I got the job the same day I went for my interview! I was very lucky that Mia could come with me and I was only working 2 days a week which made 16 hours. But I was not receiving income support which is what I wanted to stop. So, I was pretty proud of myself!
 
 
Mia slept pretty well during her first year. She was co-sleeping with me for a good few months until I decided it was time to move her into her own cot. It took a good while to settle her but she did eventually. I had found out where her Dad's Mother worked and I decided to take a trip there. I went with someone who knows what she looked like and luckily the day I went to the shop, she was there on the till! So I decided to buy something and I got the courage to tell her that in the pram was her granddaughter! She was shocked, of course! It was quite awkward but nothing was done since then (until later).
 
I can't quite remember what happened or when Mia's Dad decided to come and see Mia. It was when she was around 4-6 months old and he would come and see her once a week at my Dad's house for about an hour-or-so. He actually stuck to it this time. I went to see his Mam again in the place she works and I asked if she wanted me to go over to hers to spend some time with Mia, and she said yes! She had no idea that her son/Mia's Dad was seeing Mia each week but it didn't bother me as much because things were finally getting there.
 
After a couple of months of Mia's Dad seeing Mia each week, we decided to let him take her out for one day once a week, then that turned into one night away and eventually turned into Friday - Sunday every two weeks. It was hard to have those first nights away from Mia but I knew it was good for her to know her Dads side of the family just as well as knowing my side of the family.
 
 
Being a single Mum is hard. Dealing with temper tantrums, wake up calls in the nights (when she did wake up), not knowing what to do when she was crying over nothing and much more. But I had the privilege to see my first daughter taking her first steps, sitting up for the first time, saying her first word, seeing her first tooth and many other amazing milestones. I was the one that was there. I was the one who can tell her when she is older.
 
* Please note: I have not written this post to make her Dad look 'bad'. It was really hard at the time and I was in two minds to actually publish post on my blog. But I want people to know my story. Mia now sees her Dad every single weekend for one night and sometimes two nights. She loves her Dads side family and is very much a Mammys girl and a Nainy's girl (from her dad's side). 

50 comments

  1. Aww you have done incredibly well. How grown up you were to handle the situation with such dignity at such a young age. You could teach many older people a lesson in how to raise children and what is best for them. It's great that you realise she needs both sides of her family. X

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  2. I am sure this post is going to help any people that are going through the same thing.

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  3. You must be incredibly proud of yourself for everything you've done raising your girl but also looking for a job and being the best parent you could x

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  4. Really great and inspiring story, I am glad that you shared it!

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  5. your daughter was such a cute little baby!!! Becoming a parent can be hard, and I am so glad that Mia's dad now see's her often.

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  6. At such a young age you stepped up and accepted responsibility and that is the markings of a true adult. I am glad that Mia's dad is finally stepping up and being a dad but as you said it was difficult being a single mum. You should be so proud of yourself you have done an incredible job!

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  7. aw bless you but a great role model to all young mums x

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  8. It's so nice to read your story and I'm really glad that Mia's dad sees her regularly now. I had my daughter when I was 16 nearly 17 and she turns 11 in a few weeks time, it's really nice to see someone like myself who went out and did the best for their child instead of just feeling like it was a bad situation. I take my hat off to you Beth, I really do! xxx

    Charli | Beauty and Lifestyle Blogger at CHARLI B

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  9. You should feel proud that you did so much on your own. I can't imagine how hard it was!

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  10. Wonderful post, you are a shining example of a fabulous mum :) Lovely to read and thanks for linking up #bestandworst

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  11. You should be SO proud of yourself. It is SO hard being a single mum at any age but 17 is so young but you did it and you are an amazing mum. I can relate to this post a lot. xx

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  12. You have done incredibly well, you should be very proud of yourself x

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  13. You've done so well and I hope your proud! It's difficult at any age but especially at 16/17

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  14. Being a single parent must be tough, I was brought up by a single parent and I couldn't be more proud of my Mum. x

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  15. Being a single parent must be hard, but you did perfectly having patients and seeing the bigger picture. You did what was right for Mia, and she will be so proud of you for being so mature at such a young age. xx

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  16. I was 16 when I had my first. Her dad was there the whole time for me up until she was actually born. Then I guess sleepless nights kicked in and he started abusing me. Well done for writing this.

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  17. Being a mum is tricky at the best of times but I could see how on your own its even harder. well done for getting through it and thanks for sharing your story x

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  18. You sound like a wonderful mother! Little Mia is so lucky to have you xo

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  19. I am completely in awe of you doing this at 17. I struggle daily with the little things like temper tantrums and whining and I'm 32 with a supportive husband. You are fabulous - well done you. And you were very much the self-less Mummy for ensuring Mia still has her Dad in her life, no matter what you felt towards him #bestandworst

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  20. You are amazing! I couldn't imagine doing it all by myself, let alone being 17! It angers me when some Dad's think they don't have to see their child but I'm glad he did eventually stand in and do his bit! x

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  21. A great post, I cannot imagine how hard those first few months must have been on your own

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  22. This is such a lovely post. You have done incredibly well and should be proud of yourself. I wouldn't have coped as well as you.

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  23. You should be so proud of yourself, this is a great post x

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  24. I really enjoyed reading this, what a lovely post and I know it would help lots of young girls or single mothers out there to know that you've been through something similar. I think it's really great that you stuck it out with Mia's dad, a lot of mums wouldn't have given him a second change but you did it for Mia and that's something to be very very proud of X

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  25. What a lovely imspirational story! I am sure that Mia appreciates all you do, and you will have a lovely bond as she grows up x

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  26. What an incredible story you have! I would not have been able to cope with all that at the age of 17 and I'm in awe of you. Mia is very lucky to have such a great mummy :)

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  27. Aww this was lovely to read. I think being women and being the ones that are actually pregnant we grow up much faster because we have no choice whereas it takes longer for the men. I am so glad that he finally came around and is now involved. It sounds like he has grown up rather a lot

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  28. What an inspiring story, you're an amazing mum Beth! How cute are those baby photos of Mia too x

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  29. You should be so proud of yourself, being so mature and going out there doing what's best for your daughter well done you she'll so appreciate it when she's older x

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  30. Aw hun I didn't realise you'd been through all of that, it sounds so hard on you! As a single mum in the best possible position of being older, having his dad a permanent fixture in his life and having the security of my new fella, I still struggle, so having to deal with all of that so young on your own is a real achievement, well done. I don't think you've necessarily made him sound bad either, you've made him sound like a young lad who was probably scared, which is completely understandable. I know it didn't help you at the time, but at least he's stepped up now. xx

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  31. Hi Beth, you sound like a wonderful Mum and I thank you for sharing this post. Blogging does give us the power to share stories about our lives, not to make anyone look or feel bad, but in the hope of helping someone in a similar situation.

    Things could not have been easy for you back then, but you seem to be in a much better place now and it's fantastic that you took those steps to introduce your daughter to her Grandma on her Dads side; many women would not have.

    You've done good and should be proud.

    xx

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  32. You sound like a great mum and it's great that dad is around too :) such completely different lifestyles from my folks who are much older than you, they had me a little later than you had Mia X Nice to get a different perspective from a young mum x

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  33. Ahh that's such a lovely emotional post. Well done you, being a single mum at such a young age must be terrifying and hard, but you've done brilliantly in bringing her up as well as getting a job to support yourself so early on.
    That's an amazing achievement.
    Also bringing the two sides of the family together, it's so lovely that you're all amicable and can be civil for the sake of your daughter. Brilliant! x #JustAnotherLinky

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  34. Amazing! You sound like such a strong woman especially having a baby young.. Such a lovely read thanks for sharing x

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  35. Well done for writing such an honest and frank post - it can't have been easy! I'm sure it will help other peoplex #justanotherlinky

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  36. Well done for posting such an honest account of your first year as a single mum. I can't imagine how difficult it must have been for you - I'm glad Mia sees her Dad regularly now. I'm sure it'll really help others in a similar position x

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  37. Thank you for sharing! I was also a young single mum at 19. The first year is so tough for any new mum. So lovely you were able to get a job where you could keep her near also. X

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  38. Wow you are amazing, it must have been so tough. Glad things got better for you and Mia x

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  39. Man I totes know how you feel I got pregnant at 16 and had my boy at 17. Funny I wouldn't change a thing to be honest as much as
    i didn't have a life and spent evenings working. I knew I wanted a better life for my boy. it was hard work but we got there. Well done for sharing this post its so hard to share the young mum stories, its kind of like we feel guilty for starting our families wrong but thats not the point, we are mothers no matter what age. It really doesnt matter TBH you do a fab job xx

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  40. by wrong i mean young stupid auto correct ( and a glass of wine) ^^^

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  41. Ah hun, this is a great post. Very brave of you to share and you have done so amazingly well. I don't think you posted to make him look bad. I think you're amazing. Mia is very lucky.

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  42. It must have been horrible waiting for him. Glad he has sorted it out now. x

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  43. You should be proud of yourself, look at what you have achieved, I dont think you made her dad sound bad, he clearly struggled with the situation and I am glad it is sorted for now x

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  44. It sounds like you dealt with the situation with a great deal of maturity. I am glad to hear it has worked out so well with her dad's family - it must have seemed impossible at first but you got there! :)
    x Alice
    #justanotherlinky

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  45. Thanks for sharing your story. I can't imagine how I would have handled being a single mum at such a young age - I find it hard enough to be a mum at 33 with a husband to help! Also, Mia is just gorgeous. :) #justanotherlinky

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  46. you should be really proud of what you have done and the hard work you have put in! Its a hard enough job without having to do it on your own and I admire anyone who does :)

    #justanotherlinky

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  47. Wow - what an amazing, mature outlook you had on life and parenthood at such a young age. Some people go their entire lives without ever achieving that level of empathy and understanding. You would be really proud of yourself. xx

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  48. You did amazingly well, and must have been so strong for keeping going, as well as trying to get her Dad and his family involved in her life x

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  49. Amazing story and so evident that always the best was always on the forefront of your mind for your little girl. :-) x

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  50. You're so brave for sharing this post. I fell pregnant at 19 and the dad and i weren't together, i'm lucky because we're together now and everything has worked out for the best and i couldn't imagine doing that all on my own. Well done, you should be proud of yourself!

    Cydney x

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