Dad was an alcoholic. I lived with mum, then she left, so I lived with my dad. I did have fun though, with my friends. I often wonder, if I didn’t have my friends what I would have done? They helped me through, they gave me essentials when I couldn’t get them; without them I wouldn’t have had any knickers! They kept me going. I just knew I didn’t want to do single parenting like my parents did it. I do love my mum, very much. Dad, I feel sad about it now. It’s touchy because you can’t change things when they’re gone and with dad, I think I wish I saw things how he saw things.
The most challenging part of single parenting was being alone at night-time, once they’re in bed. You’ve done everything and there’s no-one there to share it with. I didn’t really have anyone to worry with if they were ill or something like that. I could phone friends or grandparents, but if they had a high temperature or up in the middle of the night, you know, you’re on your own.
We didn’t have any money, but I still found it easier to be at home with the girls than going out to work and finding someone else to look after them. It was different then but ‘when are you going back to work’ wasn’t in the conversation.
I never feel like I do it right. The worry never stops, when they’re little you worry about are they eating and sleeping, when they get a bit bigger it’s reading and writing, then you worry about boys, clubs, it’s all a big worry all of the time and you never really know if you’ve done it properly or not.
I want them (daughters) to always have someone to talk to, I’ve always picked my battles with them, so they know I’m serious when I really don’t want them to do something. They can tell me anything, life is stressful for young people now, with phones and social media. It’s not as simple as taking the phone away that would cause more stress. Home should be a safe haven.