My latest podcast guest is the author of the single parenting memoir, “Three of Us”, by Summerlin Conner. The memoir is a “brutally honest, often hilarious, and sometimes heartbreaking memoir of one mom’s adventures in single parenting”.
Single Parenting discussion with the author
(0:51) Summerlin talks about what prompted her to write a book about her single mom experience.
- The whole experience of being a single parent feels isolating and I could never find a book that I felt came across exactly what I was feeling.
- I thought that maybe if somebody else read this, they would feel a little bit less alone.
- My hope would be that they would get a kick out of the book or feel a little bit inspired to that know that they can get through it.
(2:48) Jen tells about some of her “me too” moments while reading the book.
- When you realize you don’t have anyone to write down as emergency contact and suddenly you have those forms in front of you.
(5:01) Summerlin and Jen talk about those early years as a single parent when you face the weekends alone when the kids go to their dads and the house is too quiet.
- I very clearly remember that the first few weekends when the house is suddenly silent. You remember before you were a single mom saying, “if I could just get a break” and now you get a break and this is a break I never wanted.
- The first five minutes would be great and then I would just become overwhelmed with missing them and feeling lonely.
(7:17) How reentry from one house to another is difficult for kids and how we as parents often overlook this.
- I realized I needed to take a minute and just think about what if I had to go back and forth between two houses and two sets of rules and two ways of living and two ways of eating and drinking and bedtimes.
- Once I realized that I kind of lowered my expectations of how it should be when they come home and I gave them the space they needed to be wild and crazy for a little bit. And I knew within 24 hours that would kind of calm down.
(12:17) Summerlin tells a great story about how she actually fixes her own car like a real mechanic when she was desperate and strapped for cash.
- I am a big believer that single parents are hustlers when they need to be and get the job done because there’s no one else to count on.
- Sometimes the only option is to do it yourself. That’s one of the hard parts about being a single parent.
You can buy Summerlin’s book here.