My 21st interviewee is 40-year-old Leisa Gawler, a graphics designer from Somerset who has one son aged eight.
children when you became a single parent, and how did this come about?
found hardest as a single parent?
everything, having nobody to discuss decisions with or share expenses with etc
to parenting alone, in your opinion?
is much more enjoyable, I have more time to focus on him, and our relationship
is so strong and close it is worth every tear I have cried over his father.
negative judgements/stereotypes for being a single parent? If so can you share
with us what happened and how it made you feel?
am ‘rich’ and ‘assumes’ that I get every benefit going just because I am a
relationship do you have with your ex, and how easy/difficult is it to maintain
for your child?
spend time with him but I can do so if I have to for my son’s sake.
did/does the father have?
child cope with contact?
|Leisa and her son|
maintenance? If so, how did you come to an agreement on the amount?
minimum that he HAS to pay (£30 a week). We agreed £60 a week when he left but
he has since pleaded poverty (which is a lie) and now only pays what the law
says he has to.
how many hours do you work per week?
child when you’re working? How do you feel about the current childcare
him. I am lucky that the school have these options or I wouldn’t be able to
work. School holiday club in the summer costs me over £300 for the 6 weeks.
child when you first went back to work? How easy was it to adjust back into
hated leaving him but I had no choice.
guilt by working? If so, why?
guilty that I don’t pick him up from school, or go to events during school
time, guilty that I can’t spend time with him in the holidays and guilty at
work if I take time off because he is ill, or I have meetings (he is deaf and
we have a lot of meetings with various support staff etc) Guilty that I can’t
give my job or my child 100% of my focus or time.
Child /Working Tax Credits, and the cost of childcare?
way too high if mums are to get back to work that’s for sure! I’m not sure how
the Tax Credits thing works to be honest, I have never really understood it. I
know I don’t get working tax credit even though I work (?).
work/home/social life like? Have you managed to find a good balance? If so,
matches etc, I have got to know a couple of the other ‘soccer mums’ but not
If so, how long did it take before you were ready to date again?
for other single parents wanting to meet someone?
haven’t even been brave enough to enter that territory!
tips be to a newbie single parent?
people involved, explain your situation and get everything sorted. (This will
be a big weight off your mind). 2. Take everyday as it comes, don’t think too
far ahead, get through each day and feel good that you have done it – You CAN
do it! 3.Cherish every moment, the bond between you and your child will be