Parenting Below the Poverty Line: A Single Mom to 3 Works Against the Odds

Terra French, a single mom of three, opened up about parenting below the poverty line.

“Everything is harder, like it’s how am I gonna get Pull-Ups? How am I gonna get wipes?” she stated. “You know, luckily I get food stamps as well so we always have food in the house, but how am I gonna pay my electricity?”

French is raising three kids on welfare. On Christmas Eve she was on her way home when ice on the road caused her car to flip on its side. Luckily, French’s children weren’t in the car, but she suffered minor injuries and the car was totaled.

“Because of the recent separation and divorce I have had to basically downgrade everything that I have,” she said. “There’s only one income coming in now and so like my insurance, it was full coverage but then I had to, you know, downgrade that to legal liability therefore it wasn’t covered it was taken directly to the tow yard and so the insurance won’t cover it.”

Without a car, French says she has no way to get to work and has to figure out how to take her three kids to school when it starts on January 7.

Family members started a GoFundMe page for French to help her raise money to buy a new car. Even though French gets $800 a month on welfare and collects food stamps, she says it’s still difficult to make ends meet.

“People who’ve always, you know, been above the poverty line are fortunate, you know, I don’t think they’ll ever really understand,” she said.