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Can I be a single parent and a nurse?


A single parent is looking for advice on whether or not to be a nurse… 

“Nursing is the only profession I have ever wanted to do. But at this point in my life, I am wondering if it’s the right thing.

“I’m a single parent to a three-year-old daughter, and I’ve not been able to do any work or training since she was born. I know that being a good nurse is a positive pathway for me to choose, but given the stresses of the job, I don’t know if it’s the right choice for a single mum.

“Especially given the level of work I need to do outside of the day job. I can’t be alone so I guess I’m asking if there are any other single parent nurses out there, and how do you cope?”



Readers' comments (3)

  • I did my RMN training back in 1998,I was a single parent. I am aware things have changed since then.
    My advice is to do as much research as possible to see what it entails and what options are open to you.
    Look at what support you have available for childcare and financial.
    If you really want to do it go for it.
    Think about how you would manage stress, put something in place.
    Always seek support don't be afraid to ask for help.

    What ever you decide to do I wish you all the best of luck.

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  • Philip Darbyshire

    I won’t minimise the challenges of doing it, but do it. It won’t be easy but nothing worthwhile ever is. You don’t want to be always thinking ‘what if......’. Don’t ‘over focus’ on difficulties. Focus on what an amazing person you could become as a great nurse. You will never do any job quite like it and possibly you will never regret a moment of it.

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  • Hi I was a single parent of two children aged 8 and 11 when I embarked on my nurse training, like you it was something I'd always wanted to do. I was lucky that I could do the course part time and kept my part time job also. I received a bursary and didn't have to pay council tax! yay! I am not going to lie it was tough! I had to plan everything meticulously, I had a planner on my wall and organised child care around uni days and always spoke to the ward manager when I had placements to advise them that I was a single parent and had no one to look after my children over night during the week but every other weekend I could do night shifts. My part time job were very flexible allowing me to change my days when needed.. My friends also helped out with taking and picking up from school when needed. The academic side of it all was a struggle but not impossible, just ask for clarification and help if you don't understand something.

    I am so happy I did my training, I have an amazing job and I wouldn't change anything. My advice...don't over think it! It's 3 years full time and as long as you are prepared you will be fine.

    Best of luck xx

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