I'm bipolar but I didn't raise our child by myself.
Until he was 13, everything was great. Then he walked in on an argument were were having over her suspected cheating, our 1,000 argument since he was 3 and there were huge signs of that.
And he wanted to know what we were arguing about. I was so wound up, I couldn't contain myself, and said, "She tried to have an affair." (Well, it turned out, she had had 100 affairs, and still was, but I didn't want to believe that, so I just believed her denials, but I would bring up the subject several times a week.)
When she denied what I had just said, it made me look like I had falsely accused her with no reason, but I had a lot of reasons, and I couldn't stop. I did pretty good, I bottled it up from him for ten years.
So, I had proof positive that something very well might have occurred, and I couldn't contain myself, and I showed him some documents which backed my story up.
When I showed him the data, there was denying it. Well, at 13, he couldn't handle it, and he basically never spoke to me again, except in anger. It had destroyed him.
He is now over 40, and only 3 months ago, I had to quit having anything to do with him. His mother, my wife, died over 7 years ago, and I just realized a few months ago, he has been attempting to destroy me ever since. Has been carrying on her battle, and his.
What this has to do with you, I don't know. Other than, with a partner, even if we weren't getting along in private, it was much easier to help raise a child. Especially with my being bipolar.
If my wife and I had parted, I don't know how I would have handled raising him on the weekends by myself. It would be like, "Well, what do you want to do now?"
I mean, every five seconds, I would be wondering how I was going to raise him on my own for that weekend. So, I decided to stick it out, I had to, I had no choice, I had no money, etc.
But I was always glad that his mother was in the home to balance out the taking care of the child. Alone, I may have been kind of depressed, which would have made it more difficult.
So, I have an idea of what you are trying to do, and how difficult that would be.
Your son was one when you began raising him on your own. How old is he now?
One thing, you could just have some activities in your mind or on a list: 1. bake cookies 2. play games 3. ride bikes in the neighborhood or in the park. 3. watch favorite TV shows at night together, maybe with popcorn with special shows.
5. Invite a neighborhood (or school) playmate over. 6. Scout the neighborhood for kids, "Hey, yeah, OK, I live right down the street and saw you and your kid..." of something like that, and let them know you have a child about that age, and were just wondering if the two could get together.
I tell you what, you may not have any more parenting duties if you can do that. They may enjoy that so much, you could just be in the background, supplying nutritious food every now and then.
They can swap whose house that play in for that day, everybody can go to the movies together, or on a neighborhood bike ride.
Of course, a part of him also realizes that if it wasn't for you, he would be out on the street, or in a foster home, or with grandparents who couldn't do half of what you can.
So you're never going to be able to do it all. But again, he has shelter, food, a mom who is trying her best. He may have to pitch in at time, realizing there is only one parent in the hope.
Also on bad days, you can perhaps explain to him, I am really having it rough, and let him try to take up the slack while you try to get yourself together.