Statistics don’t favor young single moms.
Their chances for poverty are much higher than women who are married with children, or who are able to get a good education with children.
That said, I think we as friends and family members should lend our support to single parents on a consistent basis, and encourage them, for they are fighting the good fight and it isn’t easy.
Sometimes, because of death or divorce, they have no choice in becoming single moms.
One of my best friend’s mothers is a single mom because of divorce.
I personally think adoption is a wonderful option for young unmarried women – my niece is adopted, my sister-in-law is adopted, one of my closest friends put her baby up for adoption when she got pregnant at 18.
These babies got both a mother and a father, and the choice allowed the birth mother to get on her feet, so to speak, so she could better take care of herself, her future family, and contribute even more to the world.
That said, I realize there are some women who feel prompted to raise their babies as a single parent.
Even though this option provides many challenges, some are able to weather them and prevail.
Pregnancy centers like Alternatives in Waterloo, Iowa can provide priceless help.
Twenty-five-year-old Cassi Ubben’s story is inspiring. And there are others like her. To see the story on KWWL News, click here.
“Our hearts led us to keeping Ella, and being able to have this amazing experience, I wouldn’t change it for the world,”
Cassi Ubben managed to graduate from college, get a great job and is now looking to buy her own home - all while being a single mom, with a lot of support.
Ella is Ubben’s adorable 4-1/2-year-old daughter.
Back at the start of her junior year at University of Northern Iowa, Ubben found herself at Alternatives Pregnancy Center in Waterloo, Iowa.
“I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t want to find out alone,” she said.
After seeing a coupon for a free pregnancy test, Ubben decided she needed support, and she found it.
“We don’t lecture, we discuss alternatives for pregnancy,” executive director Janet Lyons said. “Keeping the baby, putting the baby up for adoption, is there a relative who can raise the baby, how can we help you? You are not alone. God is with you and so are we.”
Advocates from Alternatives meet with expectant moms every two weeks until their baby is six-months-old. They listen, teach life skills, parenting and financial skills, and provide free ultrasounds.
“Some say, ‘Mmm, I don’t want this,’ and they leave the woman. And she’s stressed, scared and lonely. We provide her a support system,” Lyons said.
Every two weeks, expecting and new moms can come to the Caring Connections Closet at Alternatives and choose from a variety of donated items like gently-used or new baby clothes.
The center helps about 800 women each year, usually between ages 16 and 32, seeking to prevent these mothers from a life of poverty and stress.
Fortunately for Ubben, she had a supportive family, and currently shares custody of Ella with Ella’s father.
“I’ve seen other examples of people through Alternatives who’d gone to college and got a degree, gotten a great job, all the while being a mother,” she said.
With the help of her family and her advocate, Ubben gave birth to a healthy baby, graduated with the best grades of her college career, found a job as a communications director at Van G. Miller and Associates in Waterloo, and if all goes as planned, before little Ella enters kindergarten, Ubben will have purchased her own home.
“I thought I had a promising future, and you really don’t know that you still have a promising future,” she said.
Cassi Ubben says one of the most helpful services Alternatives provided was educating her about grants and programs.
She found grants to help pay college bills, even food and daycare while she was a student.
Alternatives works with both single and married moms-to-be.
Do you have experience as a single mom or with adoption?
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This post was written by qni_it on January 18, 2011