The Single Mom And The Double Standard

People often talk about double standards in the work place, in relationships, and even appearances. No one ever talks about double standards when it comes to parenting. Unfortunately, we live in a time where people shame and side-eye single mothers, but won’t say anything about the men that made them mothers to begin with. Those same people then praise their own mothers and call her “the strongest person alive” for doing what exactly? BEING A SINGLE MOTHER!

I’ve been a mom for almost seven years now. On one hand, my girls are the best thing to ever happen to me. On the other, I can REALLY do without the crap that comes with single motherhood. Everyone has an opinion on what you should or shouldn’t do with your own children, especially when it comes to the other parent. If you’re co-parenting with no issues, you’re probably still sleeping with your child’s father. If your child doesn’t see their father at all, it’s most likely because of something you did. Mom gets the heat, while dad gets a pass. Every. Single. Time.

The Single Mom and The Double Standard

I do want to start by saying that I am in no way trying to take away from the good fathers out there. My youngest daughter has the best father ever and I love him for being that for her. However, I do believe that if men were held to the same standards as women when it comes to parenting, there wouldn’t be as many broken homes and fatherless children running around. There are certain areas and situations where single mothers have to carry majority of the load and it’s not fair.

She chose him, so it’s her fault she’s a single mother.” . . . I just want to point out that while there is truth to that statement, it takes two people to make a baby. I know it’s been a while since some of us were in a Human Anatomy class, but that’s definitely how they’re made. With that being said, men choose to have unprotected sex just like women do. When said unprotected sex produces a child, BOTH parties involved are at fault. Why people choose to just blame the female is beyond me. At what point do we hold men accountable for their part in these situations?

As a mother, you have to take care of your child regardless. Even if the father isn’t there, you have to get it done.” As resilient as mothers are, we shouldn’t have to do it alone. Stop giving men a pass to be a POS father just because you had one sis. If a mother woke up one day and decided to leave her kids to live her best life without them, it would be a real problem. So, why is it ok for men to do it? When did taking responsibility for your children become optional? I’ve been taking care of my oldest daughter by myself since she was born. Despite us being married, her father has done absolutely nothing for her, but post her picture to social media occasionally and even those are old. Instead of his “friends” and family making him take responsibility for his actions they pacify him and his sob stories like he’s not a whole grown ass man. That’s definitely part of the problem, but I digress.

Be humble, sit down” – Kendrick Lamar . . .   If you take care of your kids alone, you can’t actually say that you take care of your kids alone. If your baby’s father is a POS, you shouldn’t call him one because God forbid you sound bitter for stating facts. Meanwhile, its okay for deadbeat fathers (because that’s what they are) to snap,tweet, and flex on Instagram all of the money and time they don’t spend on their children.  It’s okay for them to live their best child free life, but you can’t call them on it. I just really want to know when this became a thing because I’m already over it.

When single women have children, they’re considered “baggage.” When single men have children, they’re proof that he’s a family man and provider. HOW? They both did the same thing and got the same results. How is one situation different from the other? I told y’all in my Reason’s You Shouldn’t Date A Single Mother post about the jackass that I used to date who compared me to a used car because I had kids. What I didn’t mention was, his mother was a single mother before he was born . . . “Vroom, Vroom!”  

Double standards will probably always exist. Is it right? Definitely not, especially when it comes to parenting. It takes two people to make a child, so two people should take accountability for their actions and responsibility for that child. I said it once and I’ll say it again;  if fathers were held to the same standard as mothers, there wouldn’t be as many single mothers and fatherless children running around.



Hi, I’m Chantal. I’m a mom of two, self proclaimed naturalista, and Author of Growing Girls With Curls: Short Stories For Girls of Color. Being a mom is hard. Pair that with being a single, black, millennial in America and it’s a whole different monster. Feel free to join my mailing list and follow along as I blog through this crazy thing called life.

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  1. Aubrey
    July 4, 2021 / 5:31 pm

    I felt all of this! It’s very frustrating that you can do everything for your kids, but some people will still judge you based on unfair and outdated ideas. Same as you described, I provide for my daughter and give her a stable home by myself. There are no accolades or admiration when a single mother does it, but a single father gets glowing praise.

  2. December 5, 2017 / 10:45 pm

    I can only imagine how hard it is. But, unfortunately the double standards are everywhere. Not that it makes is any better.

    • Chantal
      December 6, 2017 / 4:34 pm

      Agree. Thanks so much for the comment Jen

  3. December 5, 2017 / 10:31 am

    Thank you for all of this honesty. It is sickening to see the apparent double standard. As mothers we don’t get to choose whether or not we want to be a parent, it’s required. And it’s sad to see how many excuses are made for these deadbeat dads. smh!

    • Chantal
      December 6, 2017 / 4:33 pm

      That part ! Thanks for reading love 🙂

  4. LaToya
    December 5, 2017 / 9:08 am

    Great post! I hate seeing how single mothers are held to different standards then men. Just doesn’t make any sense to me at all.

    • Chantal
      December 6, 2017 / 4:30 pm

      At all. If two people made a baby, two people should be held accountable for it. Thanks for the comment 🙂

  5. December 3, 2017 / 1:08 pm

    When I was a single mom, I rarely spoke about the father’s faults, and it was frustrating. I generally kept it private because I never wanted my son to know what had happened with his father, or how hard it was for me- I just wanted him to grow up knowing dad loved him. It was definitely a very frustrating stretch of time for me.

    • Chantal
      December 3, 2017 / 1:41 pm

      Same! I held on to the “I chose him” thought for years until I realized how messed up that train of thought is. I’d never bash him to our daughter, but I’m over lying and covering for him to everyone else at this point.

  6. December 2, 2017 / 1:33 pm

    “..if men were held to the same standards as women when it comes to parenting…” This is true on SO MANY LEVELS. In parenting, How women (especially Moms) are treated in the workplace vs. Dads, Paid Maternity Leave and Paternity Leave issues…etc. etc. etc. Unfortunately, society today plays “Blame the Mom” instead of actually trying to understand what the true situation is. I have too many thoughts on this topic to leave in a blog comment. These are important issues and I’m glad you’re talking about them!

    • Chantal
      December 6, 2017 / 4:29 pm

      Hi Sarah! Thank you so much for reading.

  7. December 1, 2017 / 3:47 pm

    My heart seriously goes out to the single moms. I think you guys are the toughest and strongest. When my husband is gone for an extended period of time, those are the most challenging times of my week. Hugs and love!

    • Chantal
      December 2, 2017 / 10:28 am

      Aww thanks Bethany!

  8. December 1, 2017 / 2:37 pm

    My dad was absent for a big part of my life and I’ve spent decades wondering the same thing. Why is it so easy for men to abandon their parenting responsibilities? I wish there was any easy solution. Just keep holding men accountable and make sure your girls are always treated like queens.

    • Chantal
      December 2, 2017 / 10:27 am

      Same Tasheena! I guess that’s why I’m so bothered by it. Just doing what I can to make sure my girls “choose” better lol.

      • December 5, 2017 / 1:31 am

        Looking back, though, it forced me to have a great relationship with my mom. Your girls are going to appreciate you so much more because they’ll know that you singlehandedly made sacrifices for them.

  9. December 1, 2017 / 12:58 pm

    My mum brought both me and my sister up single handed and we look at her as such a strong women! But you are so right men get away with it far too often! Stay strong mama one day your girls will look up to you for being the best parent that they could wish for

    • Chantal
      December 2, 2017 / 10:26 am

      Thanks Amy!

  10. December 1, 2017 / 12:13 pm

    I’ve seen single moms who raise better children than those with two parents. Actually, it’s because single moms tend to give more love and care to compensate for the loss of another parent. Thanks for your very honest post!

    • Chantal
      December 2, 2017 / 10:24 am

      Preach a word Ana! lol Thank you for reading.

  11. December 1, 2017 / 12:48 am

    Chantal, first off, loved the title of your blog post.. and next, totally loved the post itself.. moms (single or otherwise) doing their job vs dads doing their job is definitely treated differently and that is kind of a shame in today’s world..

  12. November 30, 2017 / 11:17 pm

    Thank you for sharing your post. it is very insightful and it is terrible that single moms have such baggage.

    • Chantal
      November 30, 2017 / 11:25 pm

      Thank you for reading Ophelia!

  13. November 30, 2017 / 10:26 pm

    This was a really hard post for me to read. I watch my mother was my brother and my two siblings. She was judged harshly by her parents. They blamed her for her marriage to my father ending. But, they didn’t try to understand that he was already absent from their relationship way before she ended it. He was a cheater, and honestly, he didn’t respect my mom and love in the way she deserved. Yes, i believe that men need to be held accountable for creating the single mother. He needs to be held at the same standards as her.

    • Chantal
      November 30, 2017 / 11:27 pm

      I’m sorry to hear about your mom. Thank you for reading and sharing your story Teliah!

  14. November 30, 2017 / 5:53 pm

    This was a really hard post for me to read. I can feel your pain & your frustration, both at your own circumstance and at the way people judge you for raising your kids on your own. It’s hard enough to be doing the job of two people, without being shamed or made to feel that the father of your child just gets a free pass. A man’s family, especially, should hold him accountable if he isn’t taking responsibility for his kids. It’s unacceptable that many families, and many men’s buddies, workmates, and even female friends, will just let him off the hook and put everything off on the mother.

    I agree with you 100%: if society held these men accountable, we’d have far fewer single moms having to go it alone.

    • Chantal
      November 30, 2017 / 8:08 pm

      Thank you so much for this!

  15. November 30, 2017 / 3:43 pm

    I love your post, it is all so true. I was never a single mother but my mother was. My second husband was a single father but there is still a double standard. Anything he did as a single father in some ppls view was given so much more credit than if he had been a single mother. He was/is a great father and his ex was the POS you speak of.

    • Chantal
      November 30, 2017 / 5:50 pm

      Thanks for commenting Victoria! I guess they get most of the credit because it’s so rare to see a father actually parent.

  16. November 30, 2017 / 3:02 pm

    I totally agree! Even as a married mother it is the same! If my husband does anything that fathers should do, he’s a GREAT dad!! But if I do, it’s just my job anyways and I could probably do it better! My husband IS a great dad, I can totally relate to that!

    • Chantal
      November 30, 2017 / 5:49 pm

      It’s like congratulating a fish for swimming lol. Thank you so much for reading.

  17. November 30, 2017 / 1:07 pm

    Girl! You spoke nothing but the TRUTH!!! I see it all the time on social media with my friends and their ex’s frontin’ and don’t do anything for their children.. You are a great Mother! I hate that society has this way of making single mothers the fault of everything and it really isn’t fair. I applaud you, Mama!❤❤❤❤❤

    • Chantal
      November 30, 2017 / 1:36 pm

      I see it too, it’s ridiculous! Thank you so much LaToya!

  18. November 30, 2017 / 12:40 pm

    Yeah, sooo you got yourself a new subscriber! I appreciate your transparency and I got tired of hearing that nonsense too, as a single parent myself. My sons are in their 20s and it was a tough road but , yes it’s like you impregnated yourself! What about people who choose to be artificially inseminated (I applaud them)and are not counted in the single parent mix but are viewed as strong and independent. Great job sharing your experiences. Very relatable.

    • Chantal
      November 30, 2017 / 1:34 pm

      Hi Anissa! Thank you so much for this comment!

  19. November 30, 2017 / 12:33 pm

    It’s not fair. Single moms are the most amazing people I know!

    • Chantal
      November 30, 2017 / 1:32 pm


  20. November 30, 2017 / 12:04 pm

    This blog post was very honest and I agree with you. I’m not a mother as yet but I do witness these situations and I also hear persons sharing the views which you have discussed in this blog. Both parties should definitely take accountability because it does take two! I think women in general are always held to a higher standard and men just get a slap on the wrist when it shouldn’t be that way.

    • Chantal
      November 30, 2017 / 1:32 pm

      Hey Mercedes! Thank you for reading!