40 answers

What Do You Call a Women with Kids That Is Divorced? Single Mom or Divorced Mom?

i have several mom friends that are now divorced with ex-husbands that participate on various levels. They all get child support and some other help from the dads, some more than others. But all these women constantly refer to them selves as "single moms". i think they are misusing this term. I think they are Divorced moms. To me single mom is someone who never married child's father and hes not in the picture. I have one friend who's husband died and she will tell you she is a widow although she could fall in the single mom category also. What do you think?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

i am not calling these women anything, this is a term i hear THEM use when THEY talk about THEMSELVES over and over such as when introducing themselves or in general conversation.
I work with several truly single moms ( never married dad, no help or support ever). These women are amazing. but to put them and a divorcee with support and help in the same category is an insult. They live in 2 totally different worlds.
personally i would rather have been married and get a divorce than to have never been married. I dont see divorce as a failed marriage. If you worked at one job for 10 years then quit or were fired would you say " i failed at being an employee?" probably not. All things come to an end at some point.

Featured Answers

I don't mean to pick on you here (though you certainly seem to be picking on these divorced women you are talking about), but I feel like you want a scarlet letter on their foreheads. (Hope you recognize the literary reference I am using.) They are all single mothers. It is up to THEM to include whether they want to refer to their previous marriage status.

Most women don't want to refer to themselves as divorcee's. Why should they have to? Women who refer to themselves as widow's are revering their dead husbands and that is their decision to do. People are FAR more understanding of widows than they are about divorced women. There are some very judgmental people out there. Are you one of them, T.? (And yes, that's a rhetorical question, not one I expect an answer to.)

You asked what we think, and this is my answer, and hopefully, food for thought for you.

D.

14 moms found this helpful

I'm divorced and have been for 6 years. Most of them were me raising my son alone. I did get child support and we have just started a visitation schedule. There is no one else to pick him up from school etc. I'm a single mom.

Another reason I would call myself a single mom is b/c that sums up my identity. I personally would not want to say divorced every time I was summing up my identity. Divorced mom to me is more negative. I am at peace with my divorce and we get along well and I wish him the best, but I'm not going to make divorced who I am.

7 moms found this helpful

I call a woman with children a mom. It doesn't matter what her relationship status is. If I were divorced, I'd hope people would just call me a mom.

7 moms found this helpful

More Answers

I don't mean to pick on you here (though you certainly seem to be picking on these divorced women you are talking about), but I feel like you want a scarlet letter on their foreheads. (Hope you recognize the literary reference I am using.) They are all single mothers. It is up to THEM to include whether they want to refer to their previous marriage status.

Most women don't want to refer to themselves as divorcee's. Why should they have to? Women who refer to themselves as widow's are revering their dead husbands and that is their decision to do. People are FAR more understanding of widows than they are about divorced women. There are some very judgmental people out there. Are you one of them, T.? (And yes, that's a rhetorical question, not one I expect an answer to.)

You asked what we think, and this is my answer, and hopefully, food for thought for you.

D.

14 moms found this helpful

I call her Becky or Susan or Jane or Mary or Kathy or Jennifer or whatever her name is.

9 moms found this helpful

I call a woman with children a mom. It doesn't matter what her relationship status is. If I were divorced, I'd hope people would just call me a mom.

7 moms found this helpful

I'm divorced and have been for 6 years. Most of them were me raising my son alone. I did get child support and we have just started a visitation schedule. There is no one else to pick him up from school etc. I'm a single mom.

Another reason I would call myself a single mom is b/c that sums up my identity. I personally would not want to say divorced every time I was summing up my identity. Divorced mom to me is more negative. I am at peace with my divorce and we get along well and I wish him the best, but I'm not going to make divorced who I am.

7 moms found this helpful

Why are you fixated on the money? Single mom means there is no dad at home. No one to pick up the kids if you get stuck at work. No one to take kid one to soccer so you can go to the other kids game. No one has your back when your boss asks you to work late. The trials of being a single mom is about doing it on your own, not how much money you have in the bank.

I can say I have never heard anyone referred to as a divorced mom. When I was a single mom most people used the term single mom but included divorced after that. Most of the time when I used the term it was when I was asked to do something I simply could not because I wouldn't have someone to watch the kids.

I guess just reading your post it seems you are taking your narrow view and making a mess of assumptions. Regardless of our choices we all ended up the same, single and raising kids. Why the heck does that bug you so much?

Just wondering what your take is on the "single moms" who live with the children's father. They call themselves single moms as well. They have both the money and the physical support. More I am wondering why this bugs you but still.....

6 moms found this helpful

They are single moms. They are single and they are moms. Why is it so important to you that they be "properly" named? Don't set out to hurt people more than they have already been hurt.

Your friend may call herself a widow but my friend lost her beloved husband to a 7 year battle with cancer and refuses to be called a widow. She says that she wants to remember the years that they were given, not be called by a title that makes her seem continually bereft. She is a mom, not single or otherwise.

Please be sensitive to people and don't quibble over titles. Many moms who never married their child's father and still receive child support.

Edit after seeing your So What Happened. It's THEIR perogative on what they want to call themselves. Why are you so concerned about this? Be respectful of your friends if you want to keep them. Since you are not in either situation (unmarried mother or divorced mother) you can't decide for them if the term is offensive or not.

6 moms found this helpful

MY ORIGINAL ANSWER WAS:
To me they are sinlge moms b/c technically they ARE single. It's really up to them how they want to label themselves.

MY ANSWER AFTER YOUR "WHAT HAPPENED"......why don't you just mind your own business and not worry so much about what people "label themselves"? you seem like the kind of person i don't come near with a 50 foot pole why? because you worry too much about what other people say/don't say do/dont do eat or don't eat and all of that =DRAMA. Sorry to be so blunt, but it is what it is.

5 moms found this helpful

Either, but I would prefer "single mom." She is a mom who is unmarried, nothing more nothing else. Using "divorced" focuses on a failure of a marriage, and is more negative. And I am sure she would rather not throw that in her kids' faces all the time too. Single is certainly gentler.

5 moms found this helpful

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