Welcome New Member, Aruna Bansal, Founder of the Asian Single Parents Network CIC, to the Single Mums Business Network.

I am delighted to welcome Aruna Bansal, Founder of the Asian Single Parents Network CIC, to the Single Mums Business Network. It is so rewarding to connect with a fellow single parent who can offer support to a community that I do not have experience of, around divorce, legal advice and stigma. We had a very good meeting a few weeks ago and it was so refreshing to be able to ask questions and understand more about arranged marriages, how they differ to forced marriages, and not to feel like our different experiences and understanding has to divide us, when coming together is so much better to support all UK single parents. I am very proud to help raise awareness of the Asian Single Parents Network.

You can visit the ASP website here

Here’s what Aruna says;

I have had 2 arranged marriages and both ended. I could have easily hidden away, but I didn’t.

I dated a Patel at university but we weren’t allowed to get married, so I came back home heartbroken. Shortly thereafter I was introduced to my first husband, but was thrown out after 2 months by the in-laws because the dowry wasn’t enough. On honeymoon, my husband said your parents didn’t buy a house or a car. I was only 21. It took me 2 years to get my clothing, personal toiletries etc back because they wouldn’t return them without going through court. My second marriage ended after 8 years as my ex insisted on still seeing his, and even on honeymoon wanted to wear gifts from her

This photo was taken when I had just split up from my ex when my daughter was 4. I drove to Manchester with her in the back to see friends. I found it liberating as I had never had the courage to drive so far until then. (London being the furthest, as my ex used to drive us everywhere). 

I’m happy to share my experiences. Let’s not shy away from our past as we are stronger as a result of it! The stigma of being a single parent, was for the older generation with the dowry demands. Let’s be the change. I hope my story shows that there is light at the end of the tunnel, and no matter how hard things get, it’s only temporary.

Please never be ashamed of who you are or what you’ve been through, and don’t ever hesitate to reach out. Aruna x

Thank you Aruna for joining the SMBN


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Salary – £2.30 per hour OTE £30K +
Holiday Pay – No * Sick Pay – No * Perks such as Gym Membership or Costa – No
Bank Holidays – No * Annual Leave – Sorry, No (needy springs to mind)
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