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Single Mom Shares All The Work She Does To Make Rent Because Her Full-Time Job Doesn't Cut It

Photo: Iryna Inshyna / Shutterstock
woman on moped delivering food

With inflation through the roof and wages nowhere near where they need to be, families are struggling. But for families with just one provider, the fight to stay afloat in the current economy is even more intense.

One single mother shared that despite recently graduating and landing her dream job, she has to work side hustles to make ends meet.

The hardworking mom, Javiera Sanchez-Ruiz, uploaded a video on TikTok where she walked viewers through a day in the life of a DoorDasher, explaining that working two jobs is necessary in order for her young family to survive.

The video is captioned, “Come DoorDash with me as a single mother that literally doesn’t make it with just her full-time job.”

   

   

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Sanchez-Ruiz started by telling viewers that after 18 minutes of "dashing," she had earned $4, but was on her way to deliver another order that would bring in another $9. Though it seems like a small amount, she clarified that it was a good start, and that if she completed a total of 15 orders between that day and the next, she would get a $75 bonus.

The single mother recently started a new job and has enjoyed it, but admitted that it has taken a big toll on her mental health due to the inability to keep a work-life balance. With the new position, Sanchez-Ruiz has had to draw a strict line, leaving work at work once she clocks out.

Along with trying to juggle responsibilities outside of the home, at work and delivering food, raising a child on your own can seem like a daunting task. In fact, a 19th News/SurveyMonkey poll revealed that 52% of single moms struggle with work-life balance.

Continuing with her video, Sanchez-Ruiz decided to travel to a "hot spot," which is a more populated area, to get more orders and earn a higher amount for each successful delivery.

Single Mother Who Does Food Delivery After Work To Make Ends Meet Shares Her StrugglesPhoto: Mizuno K / Pexels

Though delivery drivers work hard for their tips, they often suffer from burnout and exhaustion.

The first order she received netted just $6.25 for traveling for 10 minutes, not including the time it took to drive to the restaurant and pick up the delivery. But she remained positive, stating that it was a sunny day and she would ride with her windows down.

The hustling mother was very honest, admitting, “If you’re wondering why my eyes look so low, it’s ‘cause I’m exhausted.” According to her, to add to the avalanche of responsibilities she has, her dryer broke earlier in the week and she was waiting to get it repaired.

After 47 minutes of delivering food to customers, Sanchez-Ruiz had made $19.50, which she described as “pretty good.” Although she was all smiles, she said she needed to make a pit stop for coffee, as she was having trouble staying awake, a huge problem if you're expected to drive.

Sanchez-Ruiz isn't the only one suffering from burnout on top of exhaustion.

Not only have many delivery drivers taken to Reddit to seek advice on their mental health, but a survey determined that 83% of delivery drivers polled have experienced burnout, and often worry that they will lose their jobs if they don't make deliveries on time. Even more alarming, 79% said they had driven drowsy!

   

   

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Along with low pay and burnout, the single mom got real about the pressure to juggle so much while caring for her child.

“Baby, I am just struggling. Mental health has been hanging on by a thread… by a hair. This is what my sanity has been hanging on,” she said at the end of her video. To illustrate the point, she stretched a single strand of hair between her fingers.

According to Sanchez-Ruiz, “I, right now, am at my peak of success. I just graduated, I just got the job that I’ve been dreaming of having since I was in high school, I’m growing my social media account, making income on my social media account, I have my business and my business has been doing good. The kickoff of this season has been great. My son is healthy and, somehow, I have never felt like a bigger failure than right now.”

Many moms, in particular, often have guilt as to how they are raising their kids, despite doing everything correctly and working hard to provide. It's like no matter what choice mothers make, it's never enough.

While it's not necessarily something people often think about, along with guilt and financial struggles, mental health among delivery drivers is a serious problem. One study from the UK found that one in five delivery drivers describe their mental health as "poor" or "very poor," due to increased workload, increased time pressures, and job uncertainty.

Single Mother Who Does Food Delivery After Work To Make Ends Meet Shares Her StrugglesPhoto: Michael Dagonakis / Unsplash

Another study concluded, "The courier industry has a low entry threshold. In order to obtain higher wages, they usually need to face high-load work and bear huge psychological pressure. Long-term work under high load will not only affect physical health, but also lead to a series of psychological problems."

For many single mothers, balancing work and life as they take on multiple jobs to take care of their children seems unfair. Research even suggests that moms who are the sole providers for their families will need to work until the reach the age of 93 to obtain the same pension benefits that a man would receive at the age of 65!

Rising childcare costs, high rents, and growing mortgage rates are just the tip of the iceberg when considering the roadblocks to financial security that single mothers face. Add into the mix having to work extra hard for tips, and it's clear that delivery drivers also deserve better.

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NyRee Ausler is a writer from Seattle, Washington, and author of seven books. She covers lifestyle and entertainment and news, as well as navigating the workplace and social issues.