Common Misconceptions on Being a Single Mom and College Student

Let’s face it, being a single mom with a full-time job in the year of 2023 seems daunting. Throw in the idea of going back to school full time on top of being a single mom and having a full time job? Some, if not most people might think you have lost your mind. But if you take the time to think about what getting that Associate’s or bachelor’s or even the PHD degree for you and for your kids and how it could possibly help you to buy that new and safe car, or get a new home with not 2 bedrooms, but 3 then the thought of going back to school might not seem as scary. There are a lot of moms out there who have considered going back to school, but the thought of doing it all alone, or how much money it might cost, or the time away from your kids has scared them into not taking that leap. Let’s talk about some of the misconceptions single moms might face as a college student. 

            Let’s talk about the obvious one first: “There is no way that I can manage my job, my kids and then adding in a full load of schoolwork to the mix”. I am here to tell you that I sat on those fears for over a year after I finally decided to just go for it, and I am here to tell you that it is all very doable. It is doable by first managing your time. I have become a big fan of calendars and sitting down and planning out my whole week ahead of time, down to when dinner will be made, bath time, homework to follow, etc. Another thing to consider is who you can depend on. Consider yourself extremely lucky if you have family that can not only help you with your kids and watching them, but also financially. If not, the Government can help with this. Not only will they offer financial aid to help you with paying for your classes that can be pricey, but the Texas Workforce has a program that you can qualify for to help you pay for some of your children’s childcare. This has been such a game changer for me. 

            Another common misconception about being a single mom, working and thinking about going back to school is “how will I have time to drive to school and attend these classes all while trying to keep my job”? This is one of my favorite things I have discovered since going back to school because it makes this whole experience so much more doable for so many more people. Most colleges or universities offer a wide variety of online classes now, which is great for someone who works all day and can access their courses at night when their kids go to bed. This can also help a lot with the costs as well. You might not have to buy the textbooks because they mostly come in the electronic form, and you do not have to spend the gas money to drive to the college and pay to park. 

            There are plenty more misconceptions about going back to school and being a single, working parent. Do not let them scare you. People are going back to school and making this work every day with lots of planning and taking advantage of every resource and help that is available to you. Go out of your comfort zone, I promise you will not regret it!

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