I remember when I first started having feelings for my now husband. The stronger the feelings got, the more I fought them. After a rough divorce a couple of years prior, I was done with this whole love thing. I was perfectly content with my personal romance with cynicism, and I wasn’t going to allow anyone to get in the way of that.

But Philip was different. He wasn’t just different from any man I had ever dated, he was different from any man I had ever known. He was selfless, and patient, and never once did he pity me. No matter how weak or pathetic or defeated I felt at that stage in my life, he saw my strength and my light, and I wanted so badly to see myself in the same way that he saw me.

I kept pushing him away, and giving him reason after reason not to be with me. From the very beginning, I aired all my trash, all my flaws, all my drama – I put it right in front of him, sure that he would run. But he stayed. And he embraced the hard stuff, the really, really sad stuff, the complicated and the exhausting – he embraced it all.

After a while, when I was secure in my feelings for him, I introduced him to my children. We never showed any affection in front of them, not even holding hands or hugging. In my kids’ eyes, Philip was just another friend of mine.
A few weeks after he met the kids, I had a particularly hard night. I was sick, and my 3 year-old woke up in the middle of the night throwing up all over the carpet, which, of course, woke my 5 year-old up, who screamed and cried in exhaustion. We were a mess, all three of us. It was one of those single-mom moments where I thought I would go insane. I looked insane, probably smelled insane, and my head was pounding from all the screaming. I was trying to calm my children and clean up my daughter and the carpet, and I thought, “Why would any man sign up for this?”

I called Philip and woke him up. “Come over. Come over right now. You say you want me, you say you want my life with everything that comes along with it, then come over.” He was at my apartment within 20 minutes. The kids were still screaming, and I was on all fours on the floor, scrubbing the carpet. I expected a look of shock or disgust, maybe even anger that I had woken him up in the middle of the night for this. But instead, without missing a beat, he got down on that floor, grabbed the rag out of my hand, sent me to bed, and cleaned up my daughter’s vomit. Then he tucked my children in and got them to sleep. And then he tucked me in, kissed my forehead, and said, “Yes, I want this. I want every part of it. All three of you.”

It’s been years since that night, and Philip is still quick to clean up the vomit, to stay up late talking my pre-teen through a rough day, to take my daughter’s phone calls at work when she needs help with a math problem, and to love them unconditionally as if they were his own.

This man, this wonderful man had the nerve to come along and interrupt my bitterness. I am forever grateful to him for that. And so are my children.


(Read Philip’s advice on step parenting here.)

58 Responses to Philip

  1. Andrea Altamirano March 17, 2017 at 4:52 am #

    My story is kinda similar my daughter’s father and I separated when she was about 5 months old he up and left didn’t want no family responsibility. That part in my life was one of the toughest but made me who I am today after that I didn’t want anything to do with love and men if I wanted something it was only to play games I was angry, resentful, full of hate at all men I looked at them as if they were all the same as my ex well 8 years go by single mom still and some men that did show up in my life wanted more I turned down a lot of them. I met my now husband online I ignored his messages for awhile until I finally said hey give him a chance so I did and keep in mind my daughter was old enough already so she was used to her and I only that’s how it was only her and I for 8 years when I started dating my now husband it took her a long time to get used to the fact that mommy was now spending some of her time with another man she is getting used to it now but he has been so kind and patient with her and with me as well I’m hard to handle lol and boy does that man that is my husband now have the most patience in the world he is there for me and my daughter always so it is true when you are not looking your man of your dreams walks in your life be patient my single moms it will Happen soon just be patient

  2. Ricky March 6, 2017 at 12:39 am #

    Well there are good men out there but one thing i will say proof positive is there is just as few good women as there are good men. My most recent relationship i thought she may have been special turned out that she was just wearing a mask which slowly came off to reveal almost the same women i had dated before. Its almost like they didnt want me they wanted me to be someone else. Almost like i didnt have no choice in anything everything was an ultimatum. A brief history of myself i grew up with not to easy of a childhood had to grow up pretty fast grew up on a farm. Which was a blessing after school i had went into the construction field which i am gone alot and when i do come home its sometimes daylight yo way past dark maintaining the farm. Ive had hard lessons in my life, and a man’s previous lessons are what makes him into the man he is, which leads me to a question instead of trying to learn what makes a man the man he is they try to change him? Im not old but im not very young either but i know im a good man, someone that i would be proud to know myself. A few women ive dated has came back to me trying to say they have changed and sorry but one thing i saw was dad said he would to my mother for years and she go tired of it, so no i dont think that noone ever changes. What i have learned though by dating girls that i have dated is i deserve to be treated well also especially as hard as i work, so i have learned how i dont like to be treated, so my past experiences were’nt wastes of time. I’ll keep looking. And if not then i guess that it’s just not to be, but I dont think that I need to get in a hurry and settle for someone that I cant find happiness with as well. Am I wrong from the messages that I have read in here someone may give me advice. Just as alot of ladies here are looking for someone special as am I, to be quite honest I dont even know how I wound up on this page it started out with a youtube wormhole haha. But yes there are good men out there you just cant see them from the road.

    • Trush March 25, 2017 at 2:55 am #

      Ricky – never give up hope that you will find the right woman worthy of who you are and your love. Never settle and never change, nor give up your integrity. A woman who truly loves you will never ask you to change, she will support you, make and help keep a home for you. She will be interested in what you do and who you are. Shallow women are selfish. Keep your head up and don’t give up. She is out there and you will find each other.

  3. Teresa February 18, 2017 at 7:38 pm #

    I have exactly the same guy! Except his name is Vanja and I’ve had 3 kids then, 2 more of our own and we’ll be celebrating 15 years this year! Good on yahoo Philip!

  4. Annabelle February 15, 2017 at 1:25 pm #

    Hi Kristina, my husband left me 17 years ago with 2 little boys ages 4 and 1, both with different forms of severe ADHD, in a state I
    abhor with no family within 1000 miles to help. I have been in a few short relationships, but I have been rejected by every one of the few men I found valuable enough to allow into our lives. I have lots of friends and I am smart, pretty, fit, funny, kind, appear 10 years younger than my age, and make enough money to provide for my family (although it’s not enough for vacations and 401ks). I have spent the last 17 years being a good human being (and a hell of a catch), but I have waited – patiently at first, then frustratedly – and my Philip still has not appeared. My youngest turns 18 tomorrow, and I grieve the lost opportunity to raise my boys with a man by my side who has chosen to love me…and US…as a family. 17 years and counting is a very long and painful time to wait and have faith that he is out there. I don’t know how to remain patient and not resentful of this position that I have endured but not chosen for myself. Maybe it doesn’t actually happen for everyone. I wish I knew so I could wrap up my hope in a pretty little box, give it a proper burial, and move on knowing that one of my two biggest goals and dreams (the first being my kids) is not meant for me. I can’t decide which is more painful, holding onto the unfulfilled dream for maybe the rest of my life, or letting it die. I’m glad you found your Phillip, you deserve him. I hope I find mine; I deserve a Phillip too. We all do.

    • Jenifer February 15, 2017 at 4:19 pm #

      Annabelle….I feel you. I’m also thinking that this story is the fairy tale that happens for a very select few. Phillips are NOT the norm….they are very few and far between. I pray that you and I and all of the many many many women who are in our shoes find a Phillip….and if that’s not in God’s plans for us….then He would take away this hear desire and dream for just that. I pray for comfort, love, joy and peace for us. ❤❤

    • Norhidan Abu Hassan February 26, 2017 at 1:57 pm #

      Thank you for sharing a true story in yr life. Caring is sharing..i m also a single mother of the 3 childrens.

  5. Matt February 15, 2017 at 2:09 am #

    Thank you for this article!!! Very encouraging.

  6. Ana February 15, 2017 at 1:07 am #

    I’m just crying 😭 😭😭😭 right now…. I have an amazing husband and best father ever… I have being pushing him away in the last couple of days, due to feeling like a failure at work and health issues… but he is always there for me, no matter what.

    This made me realize how lucky I’m To have him and to be able to call him mine forever…

  7. sunny February 15, 2017 at 12:45 am #

    there should be something that might have happened in phillip’s childhood one will ever like to have such a life without facing hardship,difficulties and learn from that what it taught.i wanna know everything of his childhood becz i can’t believe a person being like that with no reason

    • Solangel February 16, 2017 at 9:44 pm #

      Humbly i could say, it doesnt matter how his childhood was, whats important here is that whatever happened then shaped hom into the amazing person he is for hr and this kids..not everyday you find a man willling to share every single part of you lifes reality with you and i mean the ugly part..Sherish him and use what your hearts have to offer for him, you and the kids!!

  8. Kathy February 15, 2017 at 12:42 am #

    May you always be in love.

  9. Kristen February 14, 2017 at 10:45 pm #

    I can not even begin to tell you just how much I needed to read this at this exact moment. Thank you for giving me hope that I too might one day have a story like this. Thank you so much!

  10. Sandra February 14, 2017 at 10:17 pm #

    Omg 😲 your story made me cry 😭 I feel so identified. I have 3 kids.I know is hard to be single mom and rise them. I’m happy that you found a real man that wants to put up and deal with all that. I know one day I will find my real man that wants a family.😍

  11. Moumita February 14, 2017 at 7:04 pm #

    I am so happy for you, Kristina. I always wondered from where this genuine smile comes from. Now I know.

  12. MEGHAN February 14, 2017 at 5:11 pm #


  13. Nisrine Nammour January 3, 2017 at 3:56 pm #

    Philip that is amazing God bless you. You two are an inspiration.

  14. Martina October 5, 2016 at 2:18 pm #

    OK….you just made me cry and give me so much hope and light! Thank you 🙂
    Danas sam te otkrila…i jedva čekam sve proučiti… queen 🙂

  15. Rita September 29, 2016 at 9:27 pm #

    You are one lucky lady :-), I wish someone as nice as your husband would enter into my life.

    • Hannah November 19, 2016 at 1:55 pm #

      Me too .

  16. Rita September 29, 2016 at 9:26 pm #

    You are one lucky lady ????, I wish someone as nice as your husband would enter into my life.

    • Rita September 29, 2016 at 9:27 pm #

      Those ????? Were supposed to be a smiling face, sorry

  17. Samantha September 29, 2016 at 2:37 pm #

    I kid you not, this is exactlywhat happened to me & my daughter & now husband! How old is your daughter? She looks about the same age as mine. 🙂

  18. Michelle September 29, 2016 at 1:51 pm #

    Gives me hope!! Thanks for sharing!! Bless you and your beautiful family ????

    • Michelle September 29, 2016 at 1:51 pm #

      I meant….bless you and your beautiful family!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  19. Amber Mace September 29, 2016 at 1:36 am #

    I read this …and TEARS! of happiness and maybe feeling bad.. ive been through this also!… Also i was a single mother.. i tested my now husband like that too… and maybe even worse… and of course.. all the time! I was terrible… testing him all the time.. that being said i am now also married to a guy that does so much for my child! still does! I am glad it worked out for you! =) and so so sweet! Love to hear these stories!

    Amber Mace

  20. Heather September 28, 2016 at 11:43 pm #

    Wow.. This made me cry for how happy I know this must have made you.. I too found a man who wanted all my baggage (though I had no children I was a complete mess) just because he loved me, and wanted to show me my worth.. now were apart due to past convictions and I don’t know when I’ll see him again and we also have a daughter or son on the way.. I sometimes don’t know how I can be a single mother but after reading this, it gives me hope that it will all turn out okay! If you can do it with three, I can do it with one! I love all your posts and they truly help me get through the days sometimes. Thank you for being an inspiration to me and giving me motivation to not give up! And just all around awesome person and mom!

  21. Susie September 28, 2016 at 2:52 pm #

    I thought I had the only man crazy enough to take on a broken one. lol Mike was my childhood neighbor’s friend. They are older than me, so back then, I was nothing. But I would sit on my porch and watch him. When I was going through my divorce, I found out that he had moved back into town, with his five kids. My son was friends with his. One of our first dates was a weekend camping trip with all of the kids. We had to take my Collie/Healer mix with us because she had gotten sick, and had to have her fur washed every time she pottied, and he took that job over from me! And when my ex failed our son, Mike was ready to jump in. He took my son and my broken from years of abuse, feel like I can do no right, ugly and fat (etc) self in and took all of those adjectives away.

    A few minutes ago, he came in from work, and I started crying because I realized how much I miss him when he is gone. While he was holding me, I told him I know he doesnt always like me. He said “You’re right, but I love you.” He loves all of my broken pieces!

  22. Melanie September 28, 2016 at 5:32 am #

    Almost like reading my diary! My hubby and I met years before we dated and I was still married. I wouldn’t date because I didn’t want a parade of possible new daddies in front of my girls. We were just friends, til he kissed me! I knew it was all over, but fought our feelings anyway, and I was still going through a custody battle. Here we are 12 years later, going Strong!! By the way, I balled like a baby while reading this to him! Lol!

  23. Lindsey September 28, 2016 at 4:50 am #

    I am so beyond thrilled that I ran across this post!! I was mindlessly scrolling Facebook one day and came across an unlinked excerpt of the story above. Something about what I read really stuck with me that day and made me realize how much I appreciate what my husband does for me and our family. Without him I would be lost. Again, so glad I found the real author of this story and give credit where credit is due!

  24. Harinder September 22, 2016 at 5:35 pm #

    If we could all be as loving & giving and full of integrity as this man, the world would be so much better! Thanks for sharing & reminding us to focus on people like him, not all the selfish ones 🙂

  25. Susan Wright September 21, 2016 at 5:59 pm #

    I was practically sobbing as I read this! What an amazing guy….what love! Such a beautiful story! I’m thankful he interrupted your bitterness too! Love your writing and videos! You’re the “real deal”!

  26. Rebecca September 18, 2016 at 10:40 pm #

    This brought me to tears and gave me a glimmer of hope at the same time. Fear wants me to stay trapped in negativity, but joy will prevail in the end, regardless of my journey. Thank you!! You’ve blessed me. As a single mom of five, I needed to read this.

  27. Ellisa Poff September 18, 2016 at 2:10 am #

    I had a similar experience. My now husband picked me up for our first date and I warned him. I live on a 50 acre farm with 12 acres of lawn, cattle, hogs and chickens. If that wasn’t enough I had had a very bad divorce from a man who after 20 years finally got caught with another woman and made sure that I felt to my very core I was worthless. I had an angry 13 old boy who needed a real male role model because I had no control and a daughter who was heading down the road of addiction to prescription drugs. Who in their right mind would want such a mess???? In the 2 1/2 years since he has stood with me when I had to send my daughter away to rehab, helped me to turn my son around completely and takes all the work on the farm in stride after his long days at work. He even jokes that he is looking forward to retiring and being a full time pig farmer! Everyday he reminds me that I am beautiful, worthy and my opinion matters. He has truly made all the difference in the word to me and my kids. I, Like you, am so blessed that he found me.

  28. Chrissy Rogers May 17, 2016 at 11:53 pm #

    I am new to your page… and I must say you are such an inspiration. I read your “broken but not worthless” story and now this one… I cried at both. I’m not a mom…. well I’m a step mom to two older boys, but there have been days where I doubted who I was, doubted my existence… doubted my importance. I suffered through an abusive marriage got out and struggled to survive alone. I kept it all inside because I already felt like a weak woman for being abused, I felt like a failure after getting divorced and for me to admit I was struggling would have been the final straw. I had accepted the fact I would be single the rest of my life because there was no way I was letting someone in again. Than I met a man, a man who drove me crazy, well he still does but that’s what I love about him. I almost self destructed our relationship several times. Somehow he saw a good woman through all the crazy. We have been married now for 3 1/2 years, nothing has ever been easy for us but we get through it together. Thank you for being so open, honest, and funny it helps me feel a bit more normal =)

  29. Sanja Vrdoljak-Gjurcevic February 13, 2016 at 9:19 am #

    If all children had dad’s like this one, the world could be a better place and it would never be wars and worries.


  30. Gaz February 12, 2016 at 2:21 pm #

    Reading this story brought the biggest smile to my face!
    There’s too many depressing stories hitting the headlines and plastered over social media depicting horror stories of women and children being mistreated by their partners/husbands/step-parents etc…
    Philip is a rare breed, almost a god amongst men!
    You can see from the photo how happy he makes you all and even more you can see just how much his woman and children mean to him.
    I wish you all the happiness in the world!

  31. Hannah February 1, 2016 at 7:40 am #

    Now that’s a good husband.

    I was sick with food poisoning a couple of years ago. I was the worst I’ve ever been. I stood in the bathroom doorway in floods of tears having got in a right mess. My husband stepped passed me, ran me a warm bath, told me to get in it while he got me some clean pyjamas. He then came back and helped me get out of the bath when I was ready.

    When I had a stomach bug before Christmas I started being sick on the Monday night and by the Tuesday morning my husband had organised babysitters to take our son so that I didn’t need to try and take care of him when I was ill. Thankfully it was possibly the think that stopped my 18 month old getting the bug. As I write this comment he’s chasing our boy around downstairs and making him giggle and squeal. This is part of the morning routine as I then have him all day.

    • Carmen February 2, 2016 at 10:44 pm #

      Your story truly gives me hope after being. In a marriage where trust was broken due to him cheating. I’m a single mother of a 10 yr old boy who is my heart. I never thought I’d be raising him alone. At night when we pray before bed he always prays that GOD send Us someone to be apart of our circle & in due time I have faith that he will.

  32. Texas gentleman January 31, 2016 at 11:34 pm #

    Kristina, your husband is the luckiest man alive and you are the luckiest woman. Your story is beautiful.

    I know a man like this, it is me. I had been divorced without children for a couple years and she had been divorced less than a year and had 2 preteen boys. Unfortunately my story didn’t end the way yours did because she never felt worthy of a nice guy. We dated for several years but we were never able to take it to the next level. It’s been about 10 years since we dated and there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about her. She was the first woman that I ever truly loved with all my heart and soul. It is far better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all.

    The positive is that as her boys grew older, she realized that she deserved a good man but our season was over and she met someone. We are both happily married to wonderful spouses.

  33. Tracey January 29, 2016 at 9:58 pm #

    Your story brought me to tears. I have been single and utterly alone for almost 12 years. Wow. I’ve never really said that outloud. 12 years as a single mom. I did it on my own but not without a bunch of tears. Not without losing my oldest daughter to bitterness and anger. I still have my 16 year old daughter and I thank God for her every day. Your story gives me hope. I’ve been cynical for so long. Pushing men away when I know they aren’t bad men. Thank you for writing this post. You have given me a smidgen of strength and a little light to hold onto.

  34. Angie January 28, 2016 at 12:32 am #

    I appreciate your heart and your honesty. Beautiful testimony…

  35. Rita January 27, 2016 at 1:30 pm #

    Crying my eyes out over this one. you’re so so very very lucky….. wishing I could meet a man like this in my life…. it isnt that I dont meet men who love me- but I’ve never met a man who would be as supportive and caring. Not yet at least. so so much love.

  36. Brandon October 12, 2015 at 5:48 pm #

    Nice. Authentic. Loving.
    Good on you both.

  37. Terri September 19, 2015 at 6:56 pm #

    I’ve never bawled my eyes out reading about a man cleaning up vomit. I guess there’s a first time for everything.

  38. Jordan September 15, 2015 at 6:53 pm #

    I am a 24 yr old single mom of a beautiful 5 month old baby girl. I also work full time and I am also a full time college student. There are some days that are a lot harder than others. Those are the days that I struggle with the thoughts of how I will ever find someone who can love myself and my daughter along with the chaos and struggle that is our life. Reading this gave me so much hope that I will one day find that kind of love in my life. Thank you.

  39. Christa September 15, 2015 at 6:37 pm #

    So very similar to my own love story. Beautifully written and heartfelt. Congrats on finding your happy place.

  40. Annie September 14, 2015 at 12:21 pm #

    I have never commented before on a blog, but blimey, this was just what I needed. Struggling through a divorce myself with two teenage girls, I have met an incredible man, who will do anything to help me. I never thought this kind of thing existed. My soon to be ex-husband was the most selfish man alive! Thank God there are ‘Peters’ out there!!!

  41. Carrie September 11, 2015 at 12:15 am #

    Lovely, just lovely.

  42. Frankie August 12, 2015 at 5:56 am #

    Aaaaand… I’m crying.

  43. Carol Evans-Sylvester July 25, 2015 at 4:28 pm #

    Wow!! You are a breath of air, a force to be reckoned with, and a ray of sunshine!! Wish I knew of you years back , but I am so happy to have made this discovery on this day.

    Thank you for your humor…motherhood though wonderful would be almost impossible w/o humor of ourselves and the situations we go through beginning on day one,

    God Bless you and your beautiful family,

    Carol Evans-Sylvester

  44. Tamra July 22, 2015 at 2:38 pm #

    Love this! So happy for your sweet family!

  45. Jenni-B July 4, 2015 at 8:45 pm #

    I just discovered you and your videos and your blog and I LOVE YOU! I needed your wit and wisdom over 2 decades ago (aka stretch mark baggage from hell syndrome!) but now that I have found you I am promoting you all over my Facebook! And I am so happy you found Philip! I have a James and he is my prince, my farm boy and my knight in shining armor! Finally someone who speaks my language as a wife and mother!!!!

  46. Ali July 1, 2015 at 5:55 pm #

    What a beautiful picture of love and commitment…….happy father’s day Phillip!

  47. Amy June 30, 2015 at 3:05 am #

    This.. is so beautiful and inspiring. Thank you.

  48. Tommie Hoover June 21, 2015 at 9:49 pm #

    What a lovely Father’s Day gift this is…..when you find that right fit, it is good to hold on tight! Glad for your happiness!

  49. Dale June 21, 2015 at 9:04 pm #

    Kristina, as a man who has gone through a divorce and has my own baggage, I would like to thank you for the hope. Simple enough. You just gave me a bit more hope. Thanks for the story of your love.


  1. A Promise to his Stepchildren | - September 12, 2015

    […] He came into my life when I was a single mom with two young kids. (You can read more about that here.) He is the greatest example of a loving, selfless stepfather I’ve ever seen. (You can read his […]