Being Women

Single Parenting Ain’t Easy But You Can Always Sail Through It!

We always say it's good to separate than surviving in a bad marriage. Then why so much hullabaloo about single parents? Why do we have double standards when it comes to acceptance? Isn't it unfair? Single Parenting ain't easy and as a society, we should not be making their life more challenging.

Someone very kind from the editorial team had asked me to pen down my thoughts on being a single parent. That’s a subject on which either I can go on and on, or I clamp up. Let’s see how I fare because there is always a series of untold stories, tales waiting to unfold. Maybe at a later date.

I believe everyone is alone in their isolation. So being single is something and being a single parent is a twist in the tale. It has been an enlightening journey so far, and maybe whatever little I am in terms of not achieving anything but maturity, it is because I sailed in this perilous journey.

It was Circa in the year 2015, I logged in quickly to Facebook before logging into the official mail. Scrolled through some saree, music and cooking group posts. Later, I was pretty intrigued to see some of my closest friends celebrating their anniversary. I quickly scanned the photographs again and saw most of my friends barring me. I was missing in those pictures!

Letting a nagging thought aside, I picked up the intercom and called Moumita to bring the Mediclaim files. Despite sitting in between thousands of employees the disturbance in my mind was still there. I decided to call up my friend and mustered the courage to ask him directly,” Why didn’t you invite me last night?”

What he said changed my perspective. Forever. He said, ” Don’t mind, you are a single woman, decent to look at and a divorcee. So you know what it could be.”

I was appalled to hear his answer. But till then I didn’t realize that being a single woman and a single parent can be taboo and could be a threat to few relationships. 

That was the beginning of my learning, of my paradigm shift in thinking. I learned that I have to explain to the club where my son goes for his badminton classes and I fashionably dont use my paternal surname. I learnt that my daughter couldn’t fill up forms in a reputed college because it was a mandate to furnish her father’s name.  

I realized that the bus service owner of my son’s school would refuse to take me seriously because my son was Bhattacharya, and I was Ghosh. I realized that it had become my penchant to go around asking what my Gotra was? Was it Shoukalin or was it Batsya? Divorce is a legal paper. Should one go back to their parental Gotras? I am still looking for the answers.

And now I no longer have a 9 to 5 job. I run a social media and content agency with my best friend from school. We have won many and lost some. It has often been implied that I have been vertically inclined to rise whatever little I have. I have been asked whether I actually write content, strategize social media, or run an escort agency.

Who Am I?

The innuendoes used to bother me at a time, but not anymore. I have realised that though not overtly, but covertly I have been ostracized, and this will again probably stir up the hornet’s nest that I am trying to glorify single parenthood. 

I learnt that some of my so-called friends can admonish my 17-year-old daughter for using my name as her middle name on a social media site, and I also began to see that most people started to think that I was to be either pitied or vilified. 

We all grew up together. My son, my daughter, and I. Having absolute transparency within the closest circle is essential and knowing who you are; is needed. We weren’t invited to many places, we couldn’t do many things, but hell, we survived. We walked around in Pattaya cluelessly with the help of a google map. We did major growing up. 

My daughter used to be in a hill station boarding school, and I would take the train on Saturdays at night, reach NJP, freshen up, take a car, go fetch her, and take a train back to Calcutta. 

Tantrums, tears, and numerous fights later: my daughter has emerged as a strong individual with a mind of her own and is currently pursuing PG in Journalism from one of India’s most reputed institutes, and my son is in school. He reads and plays badminton, the guitar but mainly Minecraft or whatever those things are. He is cheeky and quite outspoken, considering that he has been brought up in an entirely matriarchal set-up. Oh, and I do have a younger daughter, a four-legged one.

When in school, my daughter watched GOW, i.e. Gangs of Wasseypur, and I let my son watch Lucifer, asking him to check all the Biblical allusions.

That’s the kind of Mother I am, and I plan to become cheekier with time.

What is also needed is knowing who’s rooting for you because after a point, you realize you’re on your own, and practically very few people have your back. 

Make no mistake, I haven’t done anything phenomenal. What I did was let go of a relationship that wasn’t working rather than cling to it for the children’s sake. No, I didn’t play the oft-played kids card. We all struggled, but we survived, and no, I do not harbour grievances against my ex-husband, and maybe we are better off now than when we were married. 

My two bits. It’s one life. Gather the courage, the luggage, and your self-esteem to move on.   Live and let live. Leave and let live.

By Sudarshana Ghosh

Sudarshana Ghosh is an ex- HR turned into a social media strategist and content creator. When she isn’t writing what her clients demand, she jots down in a blog with her school friends called Kolkata Colloquy. She has also been published in Siya Woman, amongst other platforms.

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2 Responses

  1. It need lots of courage to take such decision and to maintain all responsibility being at fair earning. Salute 💕

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