A (Single) Mother

Having a baby is life changing. Gaining a baby and losing a husband within the space of less than three months is more than life changing. It’s enough to make some people fall apart. I’m certain I would. 

Abby (whose story you can follow at her new blog here) wrote this post for us a little while back now, but we’ve only just had the space to post it. It’s a piece written with great strength, and dignity, about something that it would be easy to be bitter and resentful about. Her hope and desire for a better future for her daughter are inspiring, and I know that there are lessons that we can all take from her positivity.

I am a new mum and newly single after a 10 year relationship, 3 of which were in marriage. My daughter is only 11 weeks old and the bombshell my husband was having an affair hit just before New Year when she was only 9 weeks old.

Now they say that time is a great healer but it’s only 2 and half weeks on and I still cry every day. I wonder how much time will pass until that stops?

The tears are for different reasons as my emotions and outlook on what happened oscillate daily. It is a bereavement: a bereavement for my old life before pregnancy, a bereavement for the man I thought I had married and a bereavement for the life I thought I was going to have for myself and my daughter.

However, some days I feel relief too. I no longer have to feel lonely in the same room as my husband. Pregnancy forced me to adapt and change. He couldn’t – a control freak who felt out of control for once and couldn’t cope with the idea of responsibilities and growing up. I’m no longer sweeping under the carpet the weaknesses of my husband and no longer feeling my most vulnerable, as I did at the end of pregnancy and early days of motherhood. I’m getting my balls back- or is it my pelvic floor?

My beautiful daughter has been my rock and I hers, when he should have been for both of us. She is getting more bonnie every day and her personality is coming through every day and I can be proud that it is all down to me. After a few teething problems in motherhood I now feel like a natural and motherhood fulfills me in every way. That is one of the positives I have to take from this. She will be kind, loyal and generous, all the things her Father failed to be, in the end. Finding positives stop me from going under. The other positive is that I can afford to be selfish now – no more compromise. My dreams for the future may have been shattered but I’m enjoying creating new ones in my mind. So, I shall list below the dreams I now have for my darling daughter and I. It will be interesting reviewing them in a few years time:

  1. Cherishing every day with my daughter and keeping a video and photographic diary of her milestones.
  2. A 2 bed little cottage somewhere, which I can furnish how I like. Bring on the soft furnishings and scatter cushions.
  3. Working part-time
  4. Swimming lessons with my baby
  5. Learning to horse-ride with my daughter
  6. Going on a girlie holiday (friendship has won out through all of this)
  7. Meeting a man who will spoil me
  8. 5* holidays (not the travel lodge or hostel)
  9. Running a B&B in St. Ives
  10. Learning to scuba dive.
  11. Re-marrying with a fairy tale wedding day I didn’t do the first time around.

Number 7 and 11 may seem unusual in my current position – surely I should hate men? But upon reflection, I did have 10 good years with my ex, he is the father of my child and I hope he will be a good Dad, albeit part-time. He was my best friend for that time but to stay in a relationship you have to stay on the same page and want to turn to the next chapter together. Pregnancy forced me to grow up and adapt, whilst my husband is forever young. And so, we grew apart over a short and life changing space of time. When the going gets tough it’s fight or flight. He flew. But I know there are men out there with bigger balls and who will love and support and persevere when times are tough. Although I am realistic, I know it will take me a long while to find that person. My baby is my priority now.

Categories: Becoming a Mother, Divorce, Life
12 interesting thoughts on this


  1. Carly
    Posted March 6, 2013 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    I am so glad that you have made a list of positives & I hope you do each and every one if them! This exact same thing happened to a very good friend of mine in almost the same time frame that you talk about (her baby was 10 weeks.) This was two years ago & although she has had her ups & downs she is now retraining & enjoying life on her terms, something which had never happened whilst they were together. I wish you lots of love & success, you are stronger than you know and once you have got through this you will be strong enough to take on the world.


  2. Posted March 6, 2013 at 7:34 am | Permalink

    Hugs to you. I really wish you all the love and joy to you and your daughter. Your life will be full of happiness, because you are wise enough to focus on the positive and you dare to dream big and go after your dreams.
    What you experiences is not small, let yourself feel all the emotions you need to feel, cry all you want. Slowly it will go. (They say going through losing / ending a relationship is like mourning, because in some ways the other person “died” for you). It is a process. Live it. Good things will come.
    I wish you all the best.

  3. Anonymous
    Posted March 6, 2013 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    I feel for you. This sounds eerily similar to the position my mum was left in – she split up with my dad, after 11 years together and 7 years of marriage, when I was 10 days old, after finding out he’d had an affair while she was pregnant.

    I think if you asked her now she would, in all honesty, say that realising the marriage was unworkable, and going it alone, was the hardest decision she ever made, but totally the right one. She married my lovely step-dad when I was 2, and had my siblings. They are so happy together in a way she never could have been with my real father.

    Most of all though, what shines through this post is how positive you are, and how determined you are not to let this define your life, or your daughter’s. My mum didn’t quite manage that, and growing up with two parents who couldn’t speak amicably on the phone, let alone be in the same room together, has had a huge negative impact on my life and my relationships. It sounds like you’ve already decided to focus on being an amazing mother and on making a life for yourself. So, to sound like a corny-cheerleader-type-lady, go you! I really believe that things will get better, and better, and better still.

  4. Fran M
    Posted March 6, 2013 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    You’re so strong and have coped amazingly so far, it seems.

    Hope you continue to heal and grow from this awful experience. Your plans for yourself and your daughter are amazing. Enjoy your life together :)


  5. Fran M
    Posted March 6, 2013 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    Oh, and your blog is great! Will be checking back on that reguarly.

  6. Chloe
    Posted March 6, 2013 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    Your sense of dignity shines through here and on your blog. Bitterness is ugly and harmful and actually, pointless. Most would be bitter. You are not. Which is wonderful. Take every day as it comes. Your little lady’s first year will race by especially with all the other things you are now tackling, alone. Enjoy it when you can. You have great strength and amazing people around you. Much love Abby (a friend from afar) xx

    • Posted March 6, 2013 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

      Chloe, you are very right in that I do have amzing people around me! Family and my friends have been amazing. I hope motherhood is fulfilling you in the same way as it does me. As my foolish husband does not want to share in our beautiful daughter, I share the beautiful moments with family and friends instead.

  7. Posted March 6, 2013 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

    Thankyou for all of these comments about my experience. My life feels like a soap opera at times. These comments mean a great deal and keep me focussed on motherhood and being positive for the future. I have now accepted what has happened and forgiveness will come with time. Forgiveness will not be for him but for me and baby girl, as I agree that bitterness is a heavy burden to carry and will not be helpful to me or baby girl in getting on with our lives or for her to have a relationship of sorts with her Dad. I can’t afford a therapist so blogging is an excellent substitute!

  8. Posted March 6, 2013 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    Although I wouldn’t ever be so arrogant as to presume that I know what you’re going through, my husband also left me at a very stressful time (when my mum was dying). And so, I totally get this bit:

    He couldn’t – a control freak who felt out of control for once and couldn’t cope with the idea of responsibilities and growing up. I’m no longer sweeping under the carpet the weaknesses of my husband and no longer feeling my most vulnerable

    You are so strong, and so brave. Your daughter is lucky to have such a brilliant mum. I hope, when you meet someone new, that he appreciates you both as you deserve.

  9. Kate
    Posted March 6, 2013 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    So brilliant Abby, lots of love xxx

  10. Sarah
    Posted March 6, 2013 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    Wow, you’re extremely brave Abby, you really are. To be so positive and forward thinking in such a short space of time when most people would still be fighting bitterness is admirable

    I’m sure you and your little girl have great things to come! x

  11. Posted March 6, 2013 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

    I’m honestly not sure if I want to give you a hug or a high five. Your daughter is a lucky little girl.

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Hello! We're Clare, Aisling and Anna and welcome to a corner of the world where smart, flawed, real women talk about the bigger picture; about their experiences, stories and opinions on all aspects of being a woman today, from marriage to feminism to pretty, too.

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