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Single Dads

Discussion in 'Family and Recreational Cycling' started by Vantage, 25 Jun 2016.

  1. How do you find time to ride?
    Recently I've taken custody of my two daughters as it was discovered their mums partner is on the sex offenders register. She continues to see him so she isn't getting the kids back unless its over my dead body and even then I'll put up a fight.
    Child services are with me on this but are also insisting that the children remain in their current school for the time being so they can work on getting the girls mum to see sense. Unlikely. I live in Bolton. It's a 12 mile trip there including walking to and from the train stations. Then it's the same trip back and I have 3 hours in which to sort out their beds and general mess and get some dinner and then I'm off to pick them up again.
    Kiddies and I get home for about 4.45pm having started the day at 6am. Having done dinner, a trip to the park with my youngest and more housework I'm lucky if I get to sit down at 9pm.
    Having lost her house due to rent arrears their mum is currently living with her paedo boyfriend and as such she cannot have the kids staying over at the weekend so is limited to time during the day. During this time it's yet more bloody housework (I hate a messy home) and some errands, shopping etc.
    There's just no time for the bike anymore and it's depressing the hell out of me. It's been so long since the bike moved that the Aldi computer has switched off the display completely to save power...normally it just shows the clock.
    Don't get me wrong, I love my children and this (apart from the circumstances in which it's occurred) is the best thing that's happened since the divorce. I get to be a full time dad again for the first time in nearly 6 years. The kids are loving it too but unfortunately have not one little bit of interest in cycling. My youngest, has in the past come out on rides with me but I feel she does it just to please me despite smiling away as she takes off.
    The time to just wheel the bike out and go for a ride to clear my mind is no longer there and this is an issue that not one member of my family seems to understand. The cycling helps enormously in fighting off clinical depression that has plagued me for 9 ish years so far.
    What do people do? Money is literally counted in pennies it's so tight and a roller isn't cycling.
    Last edited by a moderator: 25 Jun 2016
  2. e-rider

    e-rider crappy member

    South West
    it seems that you could possibly spend less time cleaning the house - perhaps try to get the kids to help, or create less mess in the first place - this might give you an hour or so to enjoy some cycling
    I'm a stay at home Dad, but not a single Dad - I cycle while my kids are at school a couple of times per week 10am-2pm
    Vantage and burntoutbanger like this.
  3. Roadrider48

    Roadrider48 Voice of the people

    Keep your chin up mate, things will improve.
    Look after and love your children to the best of your ability(which I'm sure you do) that's what they need most.
    You are going to have to cycle as and when, but time will become more as things progress.
    You do need time for you but only after you children's needs have been met.
    Do you not have any family support of any kind? Sorry if I appear nosey or condescending. It isn't intended, honestly.
    I speak this way because my children(all grown up now) are a product of my wife and myself. A product I am extremely proud of.
    Sometimes your life will seem crappy and depressing, but you will get there.
    Best of luck mate-genuinely.
    ruffers, steve292, Vantage and 2 others like this.
  4. shouldbeinbed

    shouldbeinbed Rollin' along Staff Member

    Manchester way
    Are the grandparents local & do the kids and them spend time together?

    +1 on house cleaning. 3+ hours every day?, maybe or have pocket money linked to little bits of tidying up for the children
    Vantage likes this.
  5. seraphina

    seraphina Senior Member

    Am I right in thinking that you take them to school 12 miles on the train? Can you bring your bike on the journey to school, drop them off and cycle home?
    ruffers, hopless500, Vantage and 8 others like this.
  6. Roadrider48

    Roadrider48 Voice of the people

    Great idea!
    ruffers likes this.
  7. Mrs M

    Mrs M Veteran

    Sounds like you're doing a great job looking after your girls and running the house :okay:
    Do your girls have wee pals in the neighbourhood who they could spend some time with a couple of nights a week while you go for a cycle?
    We all need some time for ourselves :smile: :bicycle:
    Housework is time you'll never get back :thumbsdown:
    Best wishes x
    Vantage, raleighnut and Roadrider48 like this.
  8. Roadrider48

    Roadrider48 Voice of the people

    Housework is the gift that keeps giving
  9. Tin Pot

    Tin Pot Veteran

    I don't know if this helps, but occasionally my wife has been away for family reasons, I change my routine so I'm up early to get the clothes and washing up done so the house is relatively tidy. If I'm off work, a couple of hours in the morning usually keeps things ship shape and I have the afternoon to my self until picking up the kids and homework 'time. Hit the sack same time as the kids so I can get up early again.

    At the weekends I'd make the kids go for a ride or a walk with me - they protest until they're out the door. I think kids get as much from a routine as adults do, and the exercise helps them deal with their stesses as well.

    You're one of the good guys.
  10. CrinklyLion

    CrinklyLion Veteran

    Or ask the school if, at least during this transitional time, they have somewhere secure you can lock a bike up in school? Train there with the kids, ride home. Ride back for the school run, lock the bike up ready for the next day. It sounds like the train journey takes almost as long as the riding would, and you might even save some money if it means you'd only have to buy one return (with a F&F railcard?) a day instead of two.

    I'm also a single parent and although my kids do spend regular time at their other parent's home I have changed my work patterns to give me condensed working hours - long days when the children are usually away, short days when they are with me, to minimise the amount of time the littly spends in before/after school club - which means long busy days and not a lot of spare time. For the past 5 years the majority of my cycling has been commuting and utility stuff. The bike and the roads will still be there when my kids are older.

    Regarding cleaning and housework - sometimes an organised and clean environment are an important part of self-care and mental well-being. My house is an absolute shed because I am time, gumption, energy and money-poor and it does sometimes impact negatively on me. But do remember that a few dust bunnies won't kill you.
  11. Roadrider48

    Roadrider48 Voice of the people

    I like that....excellent Post!
  12. Cycleops

    Cycleops Veteran

    Accra, Ghana
    Vantage, you're doing a great job but it's clearly too much for you. Can't you get any more help from the state? Maybe as a carer or for extra help in the home.

    Is there not a nearer school? You need to get some help for your own peace of mind.
    Vantage likes this.
  13. 400bhp

    400bhp Guru

    Could someone donate you a turbo trainer? I know it's not the outdoors, but it means you keep on top of your cycling such that, when you do get out, you haven't lost all your fitness.
    Vantage likes this.
  14. biggs682

    biggs682 Smile a mile bike provider

    @Vantage bravo and well done

    how old are the kids ?

    what about a triplet ie 3 PERSON tandem might be worth asking Charlottes Tandems
    Vantage likes this.
  15. growingvegetables

    growingvegetables Veteran

    That worries me a bit - both for your daughters and you. That there appears to be no "decision-deadline"?

    Is it as open-ended as you feel at the moment? Without some sort of time limit?

    I can understand "make-shift", "short-term-pressure" suggestions by child services, to keep options open for your daughters - but your daughters (and you) are owed some sort of defined time-scale?
    Vantage likes this.