Books on dating single mothers

Daughters need to see their mothers - whether they are homemakers or bank presidents - as there for them.They may not expect you to be June Cleaver, but they want you to be available, to sell cookies at the school play or wipe away a tear after a fight with a friend.But in my case, I was more like a Joan Crawford than a June Cleaver. But so was she; as is anyone smitten by the hormone fairy.With no one to help around the house anymore, I was forced into the position of father and mother - grumpily doing all the jobs I always did, and now those my ex-husband did, too. In that state of personal upheaval, it's tempting for mothers to A) complain a lot about their own problems and B) look to their daughters for support, fostering a relationship that is almost more like roommates. Because although sharing personal difficulties can allow a daughter to better understand what a parent is up against, falling apart in front of her can leave her wondering if she has anyone she can depend on - a scary feeling indeed when given the emotional roller-coaster of adolescence.Sonnenblick has always created heroes that spoke to me.They weren’t obviously heroic on the outside being puny or skinny but they carried an invisible burden gracefully that would have felled anyone else.Because mothers and daughters tend to be so intimate during childhood, this shift from a simple to a complex and volatile relationship is disconcerting for mothers." "Disconcerting" ? And for single mothers, there is no father to play buffer when mother and daughter go at it - much like two wolverines in a too-small cage."Little Women" -style group hugs won't cut it in these special circumstances. One is a natural, but touchy, subject: the feeling a mother gets that her place as the center of attention might somehow be usurped by her daughter.

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But my problem was far more complex, and far less written about: my "child" was a teenager - a teenage girl. Ann Caron, in her book "Don't Stop Loving Me - A Reassuring Guide for Mothers of Adolescent Daughters," put the mother / teen female relationship in perspective: "An adolescent daughter may still look like a little girl, but the little-girl devotion to mother has vanished.

It's a strange feeling." Another issue that has to be tackled head-on: that daughters struggling with adolescence desperately need a stable home life.

And women struggling with being single are not the best candidates to supply it.

"Erin," I said, astonished, "They're whistling at you! And, damn it, she was already getting the attention that had always come to me. My friend Karen had a similar response to the development of her own daughter, Anna. I looked at her one morning and thought "my God, she is beautiful.' Wouldn't you know, just as I'm fading.

" She, being deadly shy and not at all used to Neanderthal males, dropped to the floor of the car until the offensive ones were out of sight. Here I was, just venturing forth into the world, feeling breathless, hesitant . I'm struggling to get dates; soon she'll be fighting them off.

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