How to Get Through Nursing School as a Single Mom

Some of the most important things you need to get through nursing school as a single mom

I went to nursing school as a single mom and I can tell you that it was one of the toughest things I have ever done. Now, with that said, I have no regrets about it since it changed our lives and opened up new opportunities for me.

A nursing degree can improve your life especially financially. While nursing school can be pretty stressful and hectic, there are a few ways you can make it a bit more manageable and less stressful. So, if the thought of going back to nursing school as a single mom is making you nervous or anxious, let me reassure you that there’s no reason to be. All you need is a plan and lots of grit!

So, if you have been asking, “how do single moms go to nursing school?” here are some of my best tips for becoming a nurse as a single mom.



The first thing you need if you are thinking of becoming a nurse as a single mom is self-confidence. You really have to believe that you have what it takes to not only start the nursing program but also to complete it.

I am not going to lie, I was a bit scared when I decided I wanted to go into nursing. I read a lot of articles about nursing and also how stressful nursing school was. For a pregnant single mom who also had a toddler, it felt like I was taking on too much. But, you know what I had? I had self-belief.

While I was a bit concerned about how I was going to cope, I really believed that I was capable of pulling it off. I knew it was going to be hard, but I told myself I could handle it. One of the keys to surviving nursing school as a single mom is to trust in yourself and what you are capable of.

So, that’s the first place you need to start. Work on your confidence. Reassure yourself that you have what it takes, and you are capable of learning everything you need to.

While it isn’t quite faking it until you make it, going to nursing school as a single mother requires some bravado and self-assurance to get through it.


While nursing is a good career and can significantly improve your family’s financial life, it’s also a very demanding career. And, that all begins from nursing school.

I am not going to sugarcoat things because it’s more helpful to you when you know the truth and what to expect. Nursing school can be demanding both physically and mentally, so it’s something you have to acknowledge and be prepared for.

As a single mother in nursing school, you are going to face a lot of demand on your time, so you have to know how to deal with that. If you are a single mom with no support, you will likely face even more pressure.

So, how do you cope with all your family responsibilities and the demands of nursing school? The first place to start is to become resolute. You have to persist even in the face of adversity. Your ability to bounce back from setbacks or challenges is what’s going to decide whether you can earn a nursing degree or not.

I can’t tell you the number of times when I thought I couldn’t carry on any longer. I faced both financial, physical, and emotional stress, but I never seriously thought about quitting. Instead, I kept pressing on, believing that I could make it in spite of all the hurdles.

Now, that’s the kind of mindset you will need to adopt to get through nursing school as a single mom. You will need lots of grit and a strong resolve to not quit. Many moms quit college because they get too overwhelmed, but as long as you are persistent and resilient, you can get through nursing school as a single mom.


I admit that one of the reasons I went into nursing was because of the money, yeah it’s true. However, I knew exactly what I was getting myself into. Yes, I knew I could make good money, but I was going to work hard for it.

So, my point is that, if you are thinking of becoming a nurse, it’s okay to go into nursing because you want to earn good money, but you should also be realistic about what it takes. Do a lot of research and make sure you are well-informed.

Don’t just read one or two articles about nursing or nursing school and think you are ready. Read far and wide. Talk to people especially other moms who have gone through nursing school, and get as much information as you possibly can.

One of my favorite nursing websites is Allnurses. I spent countless hours on that site gleaning as much information as I could. I continued to read the website throughout nursing school. That’s how I learned so much about the career and what nursing school was like.

Nursing school for single moms is all about getting as much information as you can, and learning as you go along.


Unfortunately, lots of single moms lack support which makes going to college even more difficult. If you are one of the lucky ones who have some support, I hope you make some good use out of it.

To go through nursing school successfully, make sure you seek help early whenever you need it. Whether you need help to understand the course material or help with clinical skills, ask for help as soon as you need it.

I have seen people wait until the last minute before asking for help. Then, it’s usually too late! Don’t be like that! Nursing school is hard enough without you bottling all your feelings or challenges. So, don’t be afraid or ashamed to ask for academic help or some other assistance.

Some of my classmates in nursing school had to drop out because they waited too long before asking for help. The reason quite a few of them dropped out was because of the clinical aspect. But, we had nice teachers at the lab and most of our clinical instructors were pretty cool. I believe they could have gotten more support if they sought help early.

So, take it from me. Help is always available, all you need to do is ask.


When you are fully committed to something, you will give it your best effort. For example, you will work to improve your math skills so you can do well with dosage calculation. Dosage calculations was a nightmare for a few of my classmates. We had to take it at the start of every semester and you had to score at least 95%!

As a fully committed nursing student, you will spend extra time learning the course material because you want to do well. As an example, I went to nursing school as a career changer and the first time I attended human anatomy labs, I was completely clueless!

I had no idea how I was going to learn all the muscles or bones in the body. But, I persevered and I found a way to learn and memorize the material. It was the same thing with microbiology.

So, my point is, when you are all in, you will do everything you can to succeed. That includes studying as often as you can, completing your assignments on time, attending classes, paying attention in class, and getting the right skills and tools you need to succeed in nursing school.

Related: 10 Most Important Skills Every Single Mom in College Should Have


You know what they say, first impression matters. How you approach nursing school can determine how you are perceived by your professors and peers, so always try to give a good account of yourself.

Here’s what I mean.

Just before my final exam in my first semester of nursing school, I had a family emergency and needed some time off. I had the final exam for fundamentals of nursing and about three or four more clinical days to complete.

As you can imagine, I was in a panic because I thought I was going to have to repeat the course, but I mustered up some courage and went to speak to my professor. I explained my situation to her and she said “Don’t worry, you are not going to fail. You are a good student. Go and take care of your son, let me know when you are ready to take your exam, and you can complete the clinicals during the summer.”

Can you imagine how relieved I felt? I believe one of the reasons she was so understanding was because of the way I had presented myself throughout the semester. I attended classes on time, paid attention in class, was respectful, and had been doing well on tests and exams.

I am not saying all this to brag, but to make the point that, sometimes, how people perceive you can determine how they respond to you when you are in the middle of a crisis.

If your teachers think you are a lazy student who doesn’t really pay attention in class, they may not be as willing to work with you when you are faced with a problem. So, try your best in school. Try as much as you can to maintain good grades, and like I said earlier, seek help early if you need it.


We can’t talk about getting through nursing school without talking about being organized. Yes, you can probably wing it, but your chances of success will increase the more organized you are.

So, what do you need to organize? For starters, you need to organize your time. As a single mom, I don’t need to tell you how much of a problem time management is. Throw in nursing school, and time management becomes even more important.

Poor time management is going to make life difficult for you. You are going to feel rushed all the time and this may impact your grades in school. So, keep track of your time. Use time management tools like a planner, to-do list, or calendar to help you manage your time.

Here is a simple and handy daily planner pack to help you get organized.

You also need to organize your finances. Poor money management can derail you in college. Sort out your finances, know how you will fund college, and stay on top of everything that has to do with financing college. Also, learn some money-saving tips to help you stretch your dollars and possibly minimize how much money you need to borrow.

Surviving nursing school as a single mom is all about being smart and focusing on the most things. Getting your life in order and staying organized will make nursing school less stressful for you.


While nursing school can be stressful, it’s really important for you to take care of yourself. Don’t allow yourself to get too stressed and look for avenues to de-stress. Single mothers in nursing school face enormous pressure, but you must learn how to deal with it.

Your physical, mental and emotional health are very important so make sure you take care of them no matter how challenging life is.

Also, it’s important to relax as often as you can. Take some time away from schoolwork and all the stress of being a nursing student. Find little ways to enjoy life and don’t forget to spend as much time as you can with your kids.

Time goes by really fast and this period will be over before you even know it, so make sure you enjoy it.

Next steps for single moms going to nursing school

Single moms in nursing school will probably have a harder time of things, but that shouldn’t deter you if this is something you really want to do.

Nursing is a good career for single moms because of its flexibility and the potential to earn a good salary. So, if you have an opportunity to attend nursing school and you are up for the challenge, I say go for it.

Hopefully, these single mom nursing school tips in this post will help you get through nursing school successfully, so you can create a better financial life for you and your kids.

Are you a single mom going back to school for nursing? What do you think is the hardest part of becoming a nurse as a single mother?

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How to Get Through Nursing School as a Single Mom

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