Monday, June 20, 2016

College Life as a Single Mother: Sacrifice Now for a Better Life Tomorrow.

Single Mom, College Life

I have made a lot of sacrifices to finish school and I think this is the case for many single mothers who chose to go to school. I have had many nights of not eating, to little sleep, and A LOT of stress, but I made it through. 

Tell me about yourself and education.
I always wanted to go to school for psychology but so many people told me I would not make any money with that degree. Having dyslexia and trying to go to school for something I did not want turned into me Starting school four times and dropped out three. It was not until I decided to go for what I wanted that I stuck things through, with a little motivation from my son of course. I am the first of my siblings to get a BA and I am really proud of that. 
What is the one thing that colleges and universities could address that would make it easier for single mothers to continue their education?
Making higher education more accessible for non-traditional students. This can be done with childcare on site, housing for families and single parents, alternative hours and different ways for taking the same class.
What was/is the hardest part about going to school as a single parent?
Time was the hardest part for me. Assignments required more time than anything and classes were set up in a way that was not realistic of someone juggle work, other classes, and family. I had 10 and 12 pages due in 2 weeks on top of essays in another class and that is just over whelming.
What was/is the biggest sacrifice you made for a higher education?
I gave up on relationship and fun. I did not hang out a lot at all the last four years. I just stayed focused on being a good mom and finishing school. I have had relationships fade both with family and friends and that was a sacrifice I was willing to make for a better life.
What was/is the best part of going to school?
Learning, I know that sounds chliché but you do not realize how much you miss using your brain until you are not using it. I loved working in retail but it did not require a great deal of brain work, being able to read, think, and learn something was great.
Have you finished? If yes, what motivated you most? If no, what is motivating you to finish it?
Yes, I have just finished and I am so happy. Many things motivated me but the top one being my son. I feel that informing him he is going to college is not the same as leading by example.
What is one piece of advice you would give another single mother about going to college?
I have three things to say.
1)      Go for what you want not what will make you money. Hating your job is a lot more damaging to your spirit than making less money. You’ll have this degree (and most likely debt) long after your child moves into their own life.
2)      Ask for help. I mean this from childcare, touring, or anything else.

3)      Remember to give yourself a pat on the back every now and again. I am blessed to have people tell me to realize what I am doing. It is easy to feel like your grades could be better, you could read more, prefect that essay, but truth is us single moms work hard and school is an added weight. 

Don't forget Custody Xchange is offering a scholarship for single moms (apply here).

What was is your advice for going to school as a single mother?

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Shakirah is a single mom to a 5 year old. She is a blogger, teacher, and graduate student. Her goal is to bring a more positive and realistic look into the lives of single mothers.


  1. Anonymous2/07/2017

    wow, like this post!

  2. Wow! Congratulations on having a BA.. i admire women who fights for having a better life herself inspite of being a single mom. They really are a motivation and role models

  3. Congratulations! You should be really proud of yourself. The example that you've set for your son is outstanding, and will impact him tremendously. Well done!!

  4. Very proud of you :), congratulations and I commend you for being an awesome mom and role model!

    1. A www thanks, you are so sweet!