In the 10 years I've been a single mom, the kids and I have moved 9 times.

Here's a list of those moves:

-House purchased with husband foreclosed/Moved to town home roughly a 5-minute walk away

-Moved to Southern California (The 909) so we could be closer to Matt (I needed the co-parenting; the kids needed the co-parenting). The younger two and I slept in his living room for 5 months while I worked and saved for deposit and 1st month's rent.

-Moved to apartment complex less than a 5 minute drive away from Matt's place.

-Moved to SLC after giving California a shot for 2 1/2 yrs and experiencing the most intense poverty in my adult life during that time, because California.

-First month in SLC spent with my Sis-in-law, because she had the room and incredible generosity. Started work at my new job; looked for a place to live when I had the energy.

-First real place in SLC falls victim to a kitchen fire (5 mo after moving in) that made the entire place uninhabitable.

-We couch and hotel hopped for 9 weeks - 4 kids, 2 cats, and me - hoping to find a place in the same area, same price range, before giving up. We were in a total of 6 places in those 9 weeks. I count this as one move, but the acute trauma of these 9 weeks for a mom who's responsible for the survival of 4 humans is something that I still have not fully unpacked, and this was 5 years ago.

-We resigned ourselves to a place in Sandy. The kids chose to go to the schools they were already enrolled in 20 minutes away in our first area of town. I would drive them every morning, drop them off at a coffee shop to wait until the first bell, I'd go to work, and they would take trax and then a bus home everyday - an hour+ commute. (One night, Jack, my youngest, who was in 5th grade, hung back one day after school for a few hours at a friend's house. It was snow season. Jack called me at work from a stranger's cell phone from the trax stop in Sandy to tell me he'd missed the last bus. And yeah, it was snowing flakes the size of dandelions. I left work, picked up my child, and brought him to the store with me because I had to finish closing. I told my boss the next day what had happened to Jack and that he hung out in the store while I finished closing up, and he was a dick about it.)

-After the year lease was up in Sandy, we found a place in our former area- walking distance to one of the schools, very short drive to the other. An adorable house (no shared walls with the neighbors!!) built in 1955 with the Wasatch Front less than a ten minute drive away.


I've spent the last week helping my friend who has 4 boys under the age of 10 get out of her town home because the fucking assholes of Rockwell Village in Bluffdale, Utah saw no problem evicting a furloughed single mom during the first pandemic in a hundred years.

There's more.

Her ex-husband owes 50 grand in back child support.

There's more.

Her ex-husband makes a shit ton of money.

There's more.

She has taken him to court, but this is where she's at regardless.

There's more.

But it's pretty horrific and not mine to share.


Moms carry the babies. You know- pregnancy.

Their bodies change forever in a world where your looks are a no-joke-commodity.

Married moms do most the kid shit in probably 3/4 of all cases (I mean, come on), because we live in a world where the patriarchy is so deeply embedded in the very oxygen that even the most evolved of us aren't fully conscious of how the scale tips.

When a mom and spouse split, the mom has them... oh... 80% of the time in typical situations?

Even these single moms, but really... all moms... really... all moms are held to a standard of momhood that is utterly unachievable and destructive, but our belief that we must meet this standard creates a daily trauma routine to the point of numbness to that trauma.

And yet...

And YET...


The Societal Substance We Are Patsies Of (read: patriarchy, misogyny, residual puritanical religiosity) has conditioned moms to


for seeming


even when we are in a


When my friend was two weeks out from eviction date, she expressed to me that she'd felt she had been dramatic when she used the words "I'm in a crisis" when talking to her father, desperately petitioning for his help.

I'm in a place in my life to help. And I'm for it. She said to me after I'd spent a couple of days of getting her things packed up or sold off, "I'm sure you never expected that this would turn into you giving up two entire days," in a very guilt-ridden tone.

I replied, "Well, I'm sure you never expected your life to be... this."


Our favorite Belgian psychotherapist, Esther Perel, talks about couples, marriages, relationships. She speaks frequently about the ludicrous expectation we almost aaaalllllllllllll have that our committed, romantic partner should fulfill every single need we find ourselves needing (oh, and read our minds, thank you very much) putting them in the unreal position of playing multiple roles in our life. In other words, this notion is insanity, because it cannot be done. One human cannot fill all the needs for another. And yet, we expect it.

How is it different with the parent? Oh, sorry... it's not.

Paint the picture, with the Belgian psycho-goodness in mind, of:

A mom trying to be all the roles that, not one, but  multiple humans need.

Held to the Bullshit Mom Standard.

Who is doing it alone.  

And works. 


Just living inside of these societal constructs, ah-like-ya-doo, causes trauma. Pure and simple. No crisis needed.

Then, Jesus H. Christ, we feel we owe the people in our lives an apology when an already traumatic life situation elevates to a crisis.

How do we create a shift so that moms will not only feel allowed to simply fuckin' feel, but also that when we are met with a crisis, our village descends upon us without hesitation, without question and is only interested in giving love and support.

And it doesn't need to be petitioned.

The village just functions.


  1. Holy Shit Ashley, this is so honest and real and goddammmm I love you.

  2. Watching your journey has been a revelation. You are a miracle. And a badass.

  3. ❤️❤️❤️

  4. Amen, and amen. Just starting into the world of working single motherhood and every single fucking day I experience multiple runnings to my room, shutting the door tight, and screaming and crying into my pillow exclaiming to the bed gods how I'm not cut out for this and it isn't fair and I'm failing. FAILING!!! thank you for make me feel validated in my floundering. ❤

  5. Yes!!! You sum it up heartbreakingly perfectly.

  6. I love you, Lovey. "Everything is going to be alright."


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