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When my daughter, Mae, was 7 months old, her father and I split up.
He left the country -- without saying goodbye, I might add -- to start a new life.
I was a hormonal, heartbroken 28-year-old, and in between work hours spent editing textbooks, I nursed Mae and mashed up baby food. It didn't help that there were no single-mom role models in my life -- except, say, Madonna, who was also parenting solo at the time.
, I used to think, but I hardly had a superstar's life.
One caveat: Statistics don't tell how many single moms are with a partner (and choosing not to get married), how many live with family (so they have some help around), and how many are truly alone.
But the point is, there are a lot of single moms out there. Even so, single mothers agree that even when overwhelmed, there's usually a way to work out problems.
"The best thing I can do for my daughter is show her how to be a strong, resourceful individual," Grider says.
But she had taken a computer course when she was pregnant, and even though her preterm labor prevented her from finishing it, she parlayed her new skills into a contracting job with Intel.
"Having Hailey was my motivation to make it happen," she says.
C., told herself when she and her husband split up. with a toddler, four suitcases, and four hundred dollars.
They'd moved out of the country and had a baby, and then their marriage fell apart. "My life has been this series of 'oh, that was hard' crises, but I just keep going," Zola says.Divorce and birth out of wedlock don't have the stigma that they did in earlier eras.