Friends Holly Harper and Herrin Hopper had been through many crucial life changes over the years, including the end of their marriages. If there is anyone, the two single moms could rely on – it’s each other. Thus, they decided to raise their kids together in a four-unit home.
It was during the pandemic that the women began struggling and ultimately found themselves living in individual apartments. Harper, who has a 9-year-old girl, and Hooper, who is a mom of a 13 and a 9-year-old, doing their best to tackle the challenges of being a single parent.
The two would often joke about raising their kids in a common household. But years later they decided to act on it and purchased a home together in Washington, D.C., hoping to create a support system for themselves and their children, reports the Independent. The two moms moved into their four-unit home, situated in Takoma Park, Maryland back in August 2020.
As for the other two units, they decided to rent them out, and not long after, another single mom, Leandra Nichola, approached them. Nichola and her kids- aged 9 and 12, soon moved into the basement unit, and eventually, the top floor unit was rented out by Harper and Hopper’s friend Jen Jacobs, a few months later.
They now call their home “Siren House” as they see the mythological half-bird half-woman creature as a symbol of female empowerment. Speaking to TODAY, the woman expressed their hope to expand this beautiful co-housing concept which would help support other mothers.
“We’re definitely like sisters, and the kids are more like our nieces and nephews. We’re not dependent in an unhealthy way. We’re interdependent,” noted Harper during an interview with the Washington Post. “We all have this awareness of each other’s humanity, and a genuine desire to care for one another,” said Hopper. “We’re not romanticizing it. It’s real and true and deep and doable.”
The move has been especially beneficial for their children not only for the large number of toys they have but also the fact that they are somewhat of the same age. This, according to Harper, has been elemental in helping the kids to relate with each as cousins would. “Kids—who can use the buddy system for a walk to get gelato, and who have playmates during the quarantine and homeschool months—are thriving,” she added.
With so many children running around on the property, there are bound to be some hiccups. To resolve and keep everything running smoothly, the women sit for routine “homeowners’ meetings” with a bottle of champagne. That doesn’t sound rough at all. While they say it takes a village to raise children, for these women it only takes a close-knit group of pals and a mutual desire for support.