The challenges of being a single father

Bayo Ajibola

If you think that parenting is an easy task, you are yet to meet a single father and listen to his challenges. Every single father has an interesting count of events during his first few days as a single dad and his everyday challenges. Parenthood comes with its share of ups and downs but nothing compares to raising a child as a sole parent. With the rise in single father household, there are still several challenges every single dad will experience at some point. The challenges of being a single father Here are a few:

  1. Work/ Life balance – Being a single father means he has to create more time for play and bonding with his child. While some jobs can be utterly demanding, it is important to set aside ample time for his child. He has to be present in his education, co-curricular activities and social events. This means alot to his child and goes a long way in cementing their relationship.
  2. Constant communication with your ex – Being a single father as a result of separation or divorce will involve constant communication with an ex. This can be a challenge to a single father since he needs to move on. It also brings a challenge when a new partner comes in the picture. Either he has to deal with his ex’s new man or has to get his new girlfriend to understand why he keeps talking to his ex.
  3. Acceptance – The society has a hard time accepting single fathers can do an equally good job at raising kids. A single father may find it hard to relate to his previous friends who do not understand single parenthood forcing him to find a new circle of friends. The government and social programs have little to no representation from single fathers. This makes it a bit of a challenge for every single father looking to fit in.
  4. New financial obligations – As a sole parent, every single father has to cater for the immediate and future financial needs for his child. This calls for some serious financial restructuring to be able to provide basic needs and accord a little bit of luxury to his child.
  5. Lifestyle changes – From hanging out with friends and weekend escapades to changing diapers and attending play dates; these are some of the lifestyle changes that come with single fatherhood. A single father will have to make sacrifices for the things he previously enjoyed doing and learn to do new activities involving his children.


Despite the rise in single father households, the society still has not accepted that men are equally able to raise children on their own. Several questions are posed to single fathers in regards to why and how they ended up as sole parents. Lack of adequate misrepresentation in government and social programmes makes it harder to transition into being a single father. However, single fathers are more capable than they think and still do a fantastic job raising their kids.

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