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  • #21890 Report


    I’ve been a single parent for just over a year now and towards the end of last year life seemed to be looking up (2018 was a very dark place for me emotionally, trying to deal with all the problems that come with being a single parent) I started this year feeling positive and optimistic, but it’s all gone downhill again and I am starting to feel anxious and worried again. Basically I am so concerned about finances; it’s the time of year when all utility bills go up, meaning less disposable income. I’m on Universal Credit, and work part time, but that’s a catch 22 because if I work more hours then it’ll just reduce my UC payments, meaning that those extra hours worked will not be reflected in my disposable income – and more hours also means spending more money on petrol for my commute as I work in a different town to where I live! I can’t see any way of getting extra money, yet there isn’t anything I can cut back on as I live frugally anyway. I’m just so worried about the future and not being able to give my child a happy life. All my friends earn good money (and are in marriages, with two good incomes) so always suggest doing ‘fun’ things, yet I often make excuses not to join them as I know they are no doubt tired of my ‘I’m skint’ excuse. So it’s even losing me friends/a much needed social life when my child is with her Dad. I have tried so hard to be positive, but I’m struggling to see a way out at the moment. Thanks for reading/listening. I can’t bore friends and family with my ongoing woes as they’ve listened to them for a year now! 😞

    #21898 Report


    Hi Littlemonkey


    I can’t offer much advice as I am feeling this way myself, I have just had my baby (6 weeks ago) and am also on universal credit, I’m an older mum and all my friend’s children are now adults and they all work full time so busy.I worked full time as a manager before I had my son which I won’t be able to go back to – The money difference is huge and I worry how I will manage when my savings are gone.


    Like I say no advice but wanted to let you know your not the only 1 (I think that helps) and although I haven’t been dealing with this for years it’s very daunting.

    #21900 Report


    If possible you could put a bit aside each week and suggest a dvd night (you can get some for a quid nowadays) or make a meal instead of going out to a restaurant.

    #21916 Report

    Hi there.  Justine the moderator here.  Its good to see the Gingerbread community supporting you.  Don’t forget that as a single parent you can contact our single parent advise line on 0808 802 0925 to explore what options are available to you.  Their opening hours are: Mon 10 – 6, Tues 10 – 4, Wed 10 – 1 & 5 – 7, Thurs 10 – 4, Fri 10 – 4.  They can be very busy, so it may be an idea to get yourself a cup of tea whilst you are waiting to get through.

    Good luck  Justine

    #21944 Report


    Alipally  – thank you for your reply 🙂 I’m so sorry that you are having to adjust to life with a baby, as well as being a single parent. I hope you have emotional and hands on support around you? Like you, I was a manager and was unfortunately made redundant after having my child. I am fortunate that it gave me savings, but those are rapidly depleting and they are just keeping my head above water. Once they are gone I’m not sure what I’ll do. I lie awake worrying about what sort of future I can offer my child, where we will be able to afford to live, how we will manage etc. I want to enjoy my time with her, but I seem to have it at the back of my mind constantly. It’s all consuming isn’t it

    BluebirdSue – thanks for the advice. I am currently squirreling away small change here and there in advance of Christmas this year, otherwise that’s another financial hurdle to overcome. I figure every little helps! I have a few local Mum friends who are amazing, so they are always happy to do cheap and cheerful for my sake. It’s my oldest ‘closest’ friends that seem to be drifting because of the difference between us in finances and family set up 🙁

    Justine – thank you. I have used your helpline before, when I first became a single parent and needed some guidance on benefits etc. You are all so helpful, so thank you for replying to this post, it’s great to know Gingerbread is there. Unfortunately I don’t think I am entitled to anything other than UC, so I don’t think you’d be able to help in this instance 🙁

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