The Feel Free Community is an incredible group of women talking about everything single parenting from divorce to co-parenting. We met them via Instagram and love the way they are changing the conversations we have about being a single parent. Check out their interview below to learn more about this amazing duo.
Who are you? Please introduce yourself, a bit about your family (kids ages etc.) and what you do outside of running this community.
Elissa is a former TV host with experience in news, lifestyle, and entertainment, as well as an established corporate communications coach. She lives with her 14-year-old daughter and their zoo of pets in Oakville.
Rhianna is an experiential marketing event planner, former star of the docuseries Hockey Wives, and ex-wife of an NHL player. She lives in Toronto with her 13 year old son and 9 year old daughter.
We happily spend all of our spare time on our shared passion, which happens to be the Feel Free Community
Tell us about your page/project?
The Feel Free Podcast is a unique experience, community, virtual gathering place, and guidebook for divorced life all rolled up in one. We offer a fun, relaxed destination for anyone going through the challenging, complicated and emotional process of divorce. We seek knowledge from experts and share our own truth, vulnerability, and experience, with a healthy dose of humour. Kicking shame, judgment and labels to the curb, FF fosters the feeling of a gab sesh with a great friend over a glass of wine.
What are the unique challenges of being a single mom?
Exhaustion! Trying to balance out your own needs with those of your kids. When dealing with stressful situations it can be emotionally and mentally draining to be the only one making decisions. Dating - don’t get us started!
What is an unexpected positive part of being a single parent?
While being the only one making decisions can be stressful, it’s also liberating not to have to bend to the other parent’s perceptions and style (if not aligned to your own).
How do you navigate co-parenting?
Carefully. Haha. We have two different experiences:
Elissa - My “wasband” lives in the US and we’re better co parents than we ever were spouses. We communicate frequently and positively.
Rhianna - I found the pressures of society told me I had to be a good co parent for the sake of the children. I found this challenging because of our vastly different views. It’s an ongoing and imperfect process. But I now know that what matters is focusing on myself, my healing journey and being the best parent I can be.
What advice do you have for newly single parents?
Don’t sweat the small stuff. It sounds cliche, but it’s true. You need to conserve your energy for what’s important.
Draw on your village - because that’s what it takes. This is part of the reason we formed the Feel Free Community. Many heads are better than one, and sometimes you need to ask for help.
Where do you see your page/project going?
We want to build this community beyond the podcast. Our vision is one of healing, sharing, and speaking our truth. We are excited for the world to get to its new normal, so that we can deepen the connections within the community through events, workshops, and retreats.