There are millions of single mothers in the US and around the world. A 2019 research shows that of 11,008,000 single-parent families, 80.7% were headed by single mothers. This means that in the dating market, chances of dating a single mom are high.
Dating as a single mom can be a challenge
The primary reason is you have to juggle emotions associated with work, time management, dating, and being there for your child. You may be ready to venture into the dating world but maybe overwhelmed with the responsibilities of being a single mom that may jeopardize your plans.
Here are a few tips on how to date as a single mom.
Make sure you are ready
It is essential to truly know if you are ready to explore the dating world. However, there is no magic timeline or universal guidelines set that you must follow to be ready. Most of the time, when you are not ready is the best time to date. If you have had an unhealthy relationship, it would be wise to give yourself some time to heal. During this period, you get to reflect on yourself to understand whether you want to date for sex, to explore different possibilities or to find a replacement for what was lost. Asking yourself such questions will help you understand your ‘Why.’
Once you feel that you are comfortable – that you have healed and moved on from the past, then it would be a good sign to start dating. This means you are ready to take a risk and experience the growth and vulnerabilities of new relationships. People harbor feelings of anger and bitterness at their exes for weeks, months, and even years. If you feel like you still have feelings of unresolved anger, it would be best if you stayed single a little bit longer.
Single moms and those who have just gotten out of a relationship may feel they’re missing out. They may think that need to return to ‘the game’ quickly to find a suitable partner. This, however, occurs when you enter into a state of panic with a mindset of scarcity. The important thing to do when you are unsure whether you are ready or not is to develop a steady and clear mindset that love is always available for you. Your perfect partner is still available when you get ready.
Make good use of your time
Making time for extra errands can be difficult for a single mom. Your time becomes your best friend, and every minute counts. You should know how to divide your time to meet your demands – Parenting, Work, Friends, Cleaning, Grocery, Health, etc. The truth is, we make our priorities. Some things are more important than others. It is totally reasonable for single parents to put their children first, then other things follow. However, if you don’t consider your needs, you will have a difficult time being a caring parent.
The most important thing for a single mom is to find a balance in their life. This is when you meet your needs and execute all parenting functions appropriately. Everyone needs love and connection. When you are constantly concentrating on your kids and creating connections with other people, remember you also need to feel the same connection and love. Dating may be a way to replenish your’ tank.’ However, finding that balance might be a challenge. Like everything else in life, it takes trial and error for you to understand what you need. After all, everyone needs some love in their life.
You need to know when you are using your kids to find comfort and keep your heart safe. This takes courage. If you know you are ready, make dating a priority.
How to inform the kids
There is no right age to introduce your kids to your partner. Relationships don’t offer any guarantees. Waiting for a relationship to head towards marriage so that you can introduce your kids to your partner is unrealistic. In fact, before spending the rest of your life with someone, you would want to see how they interact with your kids. Partners that are committed to knowing your children and being there for you are worth introducing.
As a single mother, you should be a steady rock of guidance, support, truth, and love. This will help your kids deal with anything. The only thing that you should focus on is to know the right age to gently expose your children to a certain situation with the appropriate support, authenticity, and honesty. Teaching your child the truth of relationships also makes you have a firm understanding of your own issues within the relationship. This would help you steer your children in the right path for the future.
With all that being said, it would be best if you did not involve your children in a relationship that you are not committed to. You shouldn’t involve your kids in a relationship that you are not sure where it’s headed. Wait until you know that your partner is devoted to being committed to you. To understand every relationship, take it slow. Don’t rush to introduce your kids and make sure that you give them time to get to know each other. Do they feel depressed? Sad? Happy?
How your kids will respond to your new relationship will allow you to understand their feelings. Make sure that you and your children are communicating openly about your lives. Ask how about how they would feel with a new person in their lives and respect their opinions.
Try dating other single parents
While anyone can be a suitable partner, dating a single dad would be best since they understand your life as a single parent. Dating a single parent may come with some challenges, such as dealing with more kids and making time for different schedules. However, it also has its pros since a single parent cannot question why you need to cancel a date because of a football game.
If you prefer dating a partner with no child, you should be transparent and honest from the beginning. This would help them understand your world. Make sure that they know about your kids and how busy you can get.
Dating as a single mom can come with challenges that you can deal with. It is normal to feel excited about a new relationship or a new life, but you should not lose your balance. Your heart needs love just as much as your kids need to be loved. For parenting and dating to co-exists, you need to focus on your priorities, perspectives, and balance.