Growing up with a single parent is learning how to ride a bicycle. You become conscious of missing a stabilising force, you are largely left to fend off, for yourself and in the process prone to be thrown off balance in the road ahead .The ride, in itself, promises to be bumpy and rickety but in the end you are going to get the hang of it provided you have a good understanding and are in tandem with the remaining wheels .You can take off and soar ahead, provided you persevere and don’t give up.
No matter how dramatic or mundane the cause for the separation of one parent might be, whether it be death, separation, divorce, abandonment or an off-shore posting, your family dynamics are irrevocably changed. You shall, in most cases, invariably feel the pangs of absence of one parent be it in your own day-to-day life or in the dramatic moments such as the PTA Meet in your School, Annual Days, your first award, your first failure, birthdays, wedding and the list is endless. This feeling becomes even more acute during moments of disagreement or conflict with the available parent or simply while witnessing a moment of bonding between a friend/neighbor on-screen characters with his/her other parent .This wistfulness or a feeling of permanent longing becomes an intrinsic part of your being.
A certain sense of insecurity, sometimes guilt may also strengthen its grip on your inner core, especially when not being able to account for a valid reason for the absence of one parent. The inability to internalise the fundamentals and intricacies of man-woman relationship on a first hand basis also has its life-long ramifications on the way you shall aspire to conduct your own relationship with your significant other .It does tend to prejudice our view towards one or the other parent depending on the rapport with the available parent .
However, there is a lot in this relationship to redeem and revere. The hard work, struggle and single –minded dedication of the available parent is unparalleled .The bond with the single parent which is put to trial through fire, emerges as stronger, more intense and more permanent than before. The relationship which is based on shared responsibilities, shared aspirations, shared struggle is unmatched in a two parent family set up .The love and esteem you have for the remaining parent mould your whole life.
The child in you becomes a man/women way before time. Maturity is earned, not reached. The coming of age before time, ability to assume responsibilities, be accountable for your decisions and be self-dependent are traits characteristic of living your life with a single parent.
Life, is under no obligation to give us what we want but it does certainly have its own quirky ways of evening out in the end. A positive outlook, optimistic approach and an ability to view the silver lining amidst the dense grey clouds is sure to embolden you, empower you and make you stand apart as an evolved, complete human being. When in doubt, do remember some of the most prominent men in history who have made difference to the lives of many, have been raised by a single parent.