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Jeannie McClelland

Single Parents with Scleroderma

5 posts in this topic

Hi All,


Barefoot has a new blog entry. She mentioned that there are two sub-types of single parents: those with scleroderma and those without. Would anyone like to talk about the challenges you face and how you meet them?


You can see the new blog entry here and the older one it refers to here.


My single parent days were long, long ago and far, far away (in Germany about 30 years ago). I don't think I could have managed if I had scleroderma. My hat is off to you who do.


Warm hugs,

Jeannie McClelland

(Retired) ISN Director of Support Services

(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Manager

(Retired) ISN Blog Manager

(Retired) ISN Assistant News Guide

(Retired) ISN Artist

International Scleroderma Network

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I'm a single mom of a 7 year old. Other than the usual challenges/sadnessess of not being able to do the things I want to do with him---bike ride, play ball, walk through zoos and museums easily---as someone with significant lung disease, I worry about creating a secure future for him ...without me.

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Hi Delkins!


I hear ya there. Boy, you went straight to the core! Providing a secure future for our children financially, emotionally, socially, and academically is always the priority of any good and loving parent. Now consider single parenthood and then dump scleroderma into the mix! Talk about a tough row to hoe.


It's the single most heart wrenching worry I have ever experienced. And even though I have survived the worst of that feeling, it is still always there in the back of my mind: How can I make sure my kids are going to be okay if something happens to me?


Fortunately, I have a wonderful dad and sister who are moving to my town to be close to us and help out. I am also finally pretty confident that sclero will let me see my boys graduate highschool and even college too. I have to stay optimistic, no matter what.


Nurturing healthy relationships with well-adjusted, well-respected kids and adults is on the priority list. One way I do that for my boys is through sports. I tell them they have to pick at least 2 sports per year and stick it out. Fortuantely, they love sports and 'sticking it out' is not even an issue. They both play football, baseball and basketball. They have had great coaches and have learned a lot of life skills through team sports. If they weren't sports oriented, then it would be art, drama, chess - something to keep them active and involved in the community.


One of the first things I did after my husband moved out was sign my boys up for Big Brothers with the Big Brothers Big Sisters (mentoring) Program. They were both matched with WONDERFUL men who have been amazing mentors and have provided them, as well as me, with priceless support. They get together weekly and do fun things together. My oldest (13) has had flying lessons and learned to scuba dive. My youngest (8) loves to go swimming and play basketball and just hang out at his Big's house on the water with the dogs and the hot tub.


If you live anywhere near a BBBS office, I encourage you to check them out! Or check them out online. There is usually a waiting list so don't put it off. Your son is just the age to start.


There is so much more to discuss regarding your fears. I hope someone can chime in with regard to financial security. I have to go now but I will be back to this!


Thank you for contributing to this thread!

Take care,



Serena Justis

ISN Blogger

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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