5 Great Careers For Single Parents or Not?

I just want to first point out the title of this post. Yes, it says great careers for single PARENTS. Make no mistake that a single man raising kids alone can thrive within these great careers as well.

I would like to point out categories you should consider when looking for careers that cater to the needs of single parents. The chosen field should have staying power. You will definitely want flexibility, working hours that are best for you children.

If you need training for a particular career, this should be considered also.  How long would it take for you to be able to complete the training? I think that’s a fair question.

Last but not least, pay always has to be considered. You definitely want the most for the time you invest.



Registered nurses (RN’s) has the most projected demand than any other career in the U.S. Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN’s) are on the list as well, but well below the RN category. With the baby boom population aging, this career will have demand for a long time to come.


You can definitely find a schedule that suits any lifestyle. However, it can depend on where you choose to work. If you choose to work in a hospital, you might have limited options choosing a schedule that works for you. This is because swing shifts are utilized a lot at hospitals.

My mom got tired of working at hospitals, so she decided to due home health. She has more time to do other things, but keep in mind each setting has its own unique challenges. There are plenty more options besides home health and hospitals though.


You can expect to complete at least two years of training to become either a RN or LPN. Some LPN programs can be done in 18 months.

I think that the monetary benefit that can be received justifies the time spent on obtaining your license. Keep in mind that some programs are the same length whether you choose to be a RN or LPN.


The median annual wage for registered nurses and licensed practical was $65,470 and $41,540 in May 2012, respectively. This is the latest information found on the internet. I’m pretty sure these numbers vary state to state and according to experience, like with almost everything career related.

Great Careers For Single Parents - Massage Therapy

Massage Therapy


There is consistent demand for this kind of work. According to the BLS, demand is project to be at around 23% through 2022.  You are starting to see this field gain more acceptance. Also, franchises are making massage therapy more affordable than getting it done at spas and resorts. These factors along with increased awareness of medical benefits should drive future demand.


You can work for a spa or you can work for yourself. I personally know people that work at a firm, and take on clients at home. This can work. Also, the rise of flexible-pay franchises adds more options for this market.

It depends on your resources and where you’re at in the profession and your life. The options aren’t limited at all. You can work on a cruise ship, resorts, or even a sports team. So don't sleep on message therapy


The training you will need varies state by state. However, you will need a license in states that allow this. Yes, there are six states that don’t have an option to get a license but recognize therapy at lower levels.

Also, some states require you to pass a background check and get certified in CPR. Here in Louisiana, it usually takes 18 months at the least to get it done. Check out the rules for your own state.


While pay can clock in at around 28-35 thousand a year this can be misleading. Take into account that people can have their own clients on top of working.

A therapist can receive generous tips. The truth is however; many masseuses often have a second source of income, especially in the beginning of this career. 

Hair Stylist/Barber


Employment of barbers, hairdressers, and cosmetologists is projected to grow 13 percent from 2012 to 2022. Growth rates will vary by specialty. So it’s about 11% for barbers and 13% for Hair stylists.


When it comes to parenting, I do believe these careers allow for maximum flexibility. Most shops work according to clients. So if you need to make a run to pick up your child from school, this can be done without interfering with your work.

We all know people within this field that work from home. So yes, this is a flexible career path for a single parent. Make a note that you will work weekends also.


All states require barbers, hairdressers, and cosmetologists to be licensed.  You will generally need to have a high school diploma or equivalent, and be sixteen years of age, and graduated from a state licensed school.These schools can last from 9-18 months. Most schools are self-paced.


The median expected annual pay for a typical Hairdresser/Hairstylist in the United States is $24,489 so 50% of the people who perform the job of Hairstylist/Barber in the United Sates are expected to make less than $24,489.

Of course this field does have a lot of income not getting reported. Contrary to popular opinion, the numbers do lie sometimes. 


Great Careers For Single Parents-TeachersTeachers Rock!


Through 2008-2013, the employment of teachers is expected to grow by 13%. Personally, I believe the way that educational institutions pervade the very fabric of how we see each other within certain segment of life; I can’t see demand waning anytime soon.


It depends on how an individual looks at it. If you decide to go into tutoring solely, then of course you will have the flexibility of working when you want. If you want to be a traditional teacher then you will give up some freedom for set hours.

If you’re child is in school the schedule can match up perfectly.Also keep in mind that most teachers will get an extended summer break. This could be good or not so good, depending on your situation.


You can take many routes to break into the education field. However, most do require at least an undergraduate degree. If you’re just starting out with going to school, and need a consistent pay right now, then this might not be the career path for you.

I’m not trying to deter anyone. If this is your dream job, great, make it happen. Just know that it will take more time than some of the other careers listed on this website.


The median salary of K-12 teachers ranged from $47,100 to $51,180 in May 2008, with the top 10% earning $75,190 to $80,970. However income varies for many different reasons. What state and area of a specific city you work in plays a factor. What level of education you obtain will have an impact on income also. You can go to this website to find out more.



Employment of photographers is projected to grow 4% from 2012 to 2022. Demand will face problems due to a number of reasons. The main reason is improved technology. Technology allows many people to enter this profession with relative ease. Competition will be stiff!


Flexibility I believe depends on with route you take. If it’s something you’re doing on the side then you should pretty much be able to make your own schedule.

However, if it’s something you want to do as a profession, your time could be limited. Just imagine if you photograph weddings. Weddings usually take place on the weekend. Now if you photograph kids, you probably will be able to spend more time with your kids.


You can obtain a four year degree and build up a portfolio. This can prepare you for different careers. Whether you go this route, or an alternative path, you will still need a solid portfolio. 

Many people become photographers via freelancing. You will have to learn on your own, which isn't incredibly hard it today's world. Maybe take a course here and there. Either way, it's one of the great careers for single parents. 


The average hourly pay nationally is around $18. This is around $35,000 annually. Of course you can do what you want. Ideally, this is a job that doesn't have a pay cap.

Freelance work or starting your own business are viable options. Like mentioned earlier, the choice is yours to make. 

It's Up to You

There are many great careers for single parents. This list is not be all, end all list. I just wanted to provide enough quality information to get you started. 

I have no problem building on the list. I wanted to add more, but seeing that this post is over 1,000 worlds already, no need to overwhelm. 

By all means hit up the comment sections and let us know what should be on the list or not. We know you want to add.