Being a single mom just is harder.
I don't say this to put down any moms in a working relationship, I know it is still very challenging to raise respectful and responsible children. I get it. I've both lived with a significant other to help me, and alone, and it's my experience that being alone just is harder. Yup, all you moms with travelling husbands who work out of town 3 months a week, you count too! However, the difference there is that often you have their support, even if it is long distance a lot, and financially it's a lot easier for you too, so it is just a little easier for you as well I think.
I've heard women say that it's harder to have a husband around because then you are looking after your children and your husband, and he counts as just another child in the grand scheme of caregiving. I'd like to mention here that the advantageous of having another active adult in the house outweigh an extra load of laundry when you already have 3 to do, or the cooking of an extra portion for supper. Here are some ways that he adds to your household: financially (sure, you may still work, but could you afford your house all alone?), emotionally (you can call him when it gets too much, or you know he'll come home on such and such day), it's a great play for the kids when they misbehave ("wait til your father gets home...), and in the grand plan of life, you are not standing alone facing it all.
I'm not going to enter into the world of bad marriages or relationships, they are a whole other topic and not useful at all. I acknowledge them, I know they exist, I know some guys just are not useful, but does he listen when you talk? Or send money home? Maybe he just doesn't know better...
The horrible thing is that I've seen a woman say her husband just won't watch the kids for a girls night out, but upon inquiring if she's explained how important it is or asked lately, I'm usually told no... This I don't understand. If you are in a loving relationship and they are his children, why are you afraid to ask for just one night? My solution, get a sitter while he's gone. This also works for when you just don't want to miss any days with him (I totally get that one!) All I'm saying is please don't diss your man to your friends if you haven't given him a chance to do it.
One of the worst parts of being a single mom is knowing that you will go to bed alone every night, with no one even to discuss your day with before you do, and you will wake up in the morning, alone, and do it all again. You make all the decisions, all the money, pay all the bills, do all the cleaning, all the cooking, and all the dicipline. It's a very daunting task and can feel like an endless line in front of you that you must forever walk carefully. If you miss one thing, then it's just not done, and by the time you sort it out you are behind on many other things. There is no one to remind you of everything, no one to split the chores with, and no one to hold your hand while you do it all. It's a lonely existance, and looking for someone to share your life with you is even harder. Trying to date creates time problems, babysitter problems, and guilt for leaving your child with someone else to spend time with a man.
All moms work hard. Much of the time though, it's just harder to be single.