Growing Together: Single Parents




Growing Together: Single Parents
By: Wendy Ray

Things can get hectic when you have both a mom and a dad in the house taking care of the kids, but that's not a reality for some households where single parents take on both roles.

That's how it is for our "Growing Together" single mom, Marsha Vowels-Edwards.
As we saw in May, Marsha gets support from her boyfriend, Tom Denmark, who's a single dad. The families hang out a lot, and the summer months have given them a little more time to spend together. Summer is a busy time for Marsha, Tom, and their children, but since the kids are out of school Tom gets to spend more time with his daughter Christina, who lives more than two hours away.

Spending time with their family is important to Marsha and Tom, that's why you hardly ever see the two of them without their children. An added bonus this summer, Tom's 16-year-old daughter Christina gets to visit often. "As often as I can, as often as she comes down. Her mom and I do that for each other, communicate with each other and travel a lot," Tom says. "His family consists of his entire family, not just part of it," Marsha says. "The time he spends with Christina and Michael together, it's very special to him. I see a different Tom when his whole family's together."

The time with Christina is not just special to Tom, but to everyone. Tom's son Michael, who lives with him, looks forward to her visits. "I like having her over because she doesn't live with me right now, so I want to spend time with her," Michael says. Marsha's daughter Morghan looks up to Christina. "She's a lot of fun," Morghan says. "She's 16 and she's really fun to play with, she was a cheerleader." Christina says, "We have fun and do a bunch of stuff. We just have a good time." Myles is also having a blast. "We have a lot of fun together, we swim, play games, stuff like that," he says.

They're not your traditional family, but everyone cares about each other and makes the most of their time together, and that's enough for Tom and Marsha to realize they're lucky. "I wish I had them all the time. Part of being a divorced parent is you have to thankfully communicate with your ex and work it out that you can spend as much time with both of your kids at the same time," Tom says.