At the best of times, finding the right spouse is a lottery and dating may be even more difficult for single mothers. For starters, combining your needs and feelings with those of your children implies that every new relationship must consider more than two individuals. While it’s understandable that returning to dating after having children or ending a relationship can be intimidating, you’re not alone. In the UK last year, there were approximately 1.55 million single mothers with children under the age of 18, compared to 210,000 single fathers in the same circumstance. So, if you’re a single mother looking for straightforward dating advice, keep reading for some pointers on how to make your love life more gratifying and enjoyable.
Don’t start until you’re ready
Even individuals with unshakeable self-esteem can be put to the test when it comes to dating and the chance of rejection that comes with it. Wait until you’re confident “you’re strong enough to take the setbacks, the ghosting, and other possibly awful conduct out there” before you post a profile or say yes to that coffee date, advises Lucy Good, creator of Beanstalk, an online community for single mothers.
This is especially critical if you’ve recently gone through a large change, such as a divorce or a substantial relocation. You’ll want to make sure you’re fully recovered from your breakup and that any decisions you make are made with self-love in mind. “Don’t do anything until you and your kids are both in a calm environment,” Good says.
Try to tune out any guilt, if you’re feeling it
While your children will always come first, you shouldn’t feel awful about seeking a more mature personal life. Lara Lillibridge, author of Mama, Mama, Only Mama: An Irreverent Guide for the Newly Single Parent, argues why seeking romance can be beneficial to your children in the long term.
“Kids need a positive role model for good relationships,” she explains. “Moms are under pressure to be born-again virgins and to give up everything for their children. While this may appear admirable, children learn a great deal through observation, and this method does not teach children what a good relationship or dating life looks like.”
“I never wanted my children to stay at home because they were afraid I would be lonely,” Lillibridge continues. “It’s critical that children do not feel responsible for their mother’s social activities. Plus, going out without the kids on occasion taught me to be more patient with them at home.”
Be as honest as you can with your kids about the fact that you’re dating
Children, as you may know, are a curious bunch. Acting secretive, depending on their age, may simply raise additional inquiries. According to Lanae St.John, a trained sex coach whose job involves coaching parents on sex education, there’s no reason to hide the fact that you’ve decided to start dating. “Be honest,” she advises, and consider utilizing it as a teaching opportunity with older children. “When you reach a stage where you’re seeing someone special, use the time with your kids to talk about the attributes and features of that particular someone, and why they’re important to you.”
“Our kids need to see us having fun, getting out there, and making a new life,” Good adds, “as long as they realize that their place in it is safe and secure.” “My daughters knew if I was going on a date and if I was going to start seeing him again from a young age.”
That said, you are the best person to know your children, their relationship with their father (if applicable), and your circumstances. If telling them you’re going to your reading group feels safer at first, then trust your mother.
Rules Single mum dating
Single moms will very certainly be in the mix if you’re dating. According to a Pew Research Center survey, the United States has the greatest rate of children living in single-parent households in the world, particularly those headed by single mothers.
Single parents bring their own set of objectives, life experiences, and viewpoints to the table, which can make them terrific partners. They’re usually capable, intelligent, and adaptable, and they know what they want in a partner. Here’s what you should know before dating a single mom, as well as how to take your relationship to the next level without becoming too committed too soon.
#1. Recognize That It’s Different
It’s critical to adapt your expectations when dating a single mother. You may have been able to judge a person’s affections for you in previous relationships by the amount of time and energy they invested in your connection.
This isn’t always the case when you’re dating a single parent. They might not be able to see you as frequently as you’d like. Single parents have little time and must devote much of their attention to caring for their children. You’ll have to look for other ways for them to express their feelings for you.
Another distinction is that many single mothers are far more certain about their goals in life. That may take away a lot of the mystique in a relationship and make it more appealing.
#2. Accept That Her Children Are Her First Priority
Children are likely to come first for lone parents. It’s critical to comprehend and embrace this reality. The dedication of a parent to their children is laudable, and embracing it can assist to strengthen the relationship and prevent jealousy.
Depending on the age of the child, they may or may not be engaged in a mother’s decision to date. Children and single mothers often regard their relationship as intense and exclusive, and children may feel insecure at the prospect of their parents dating.
It’s critical to respect that intimate bond and let your partner handle things in a way that is comfortable for them and their children.
#3. Take It Slow
To your future partner or their children, don’t strive to be too much too soon. Be frank and honest about how involved you want to be with the kids if you’re unsure. At the same time, it’s critical that you don’t start taking on a position that you won’t be able to sustain in the long run. When it comes to your relationship with the kids, follow the lead of the parents.
It’s critical to give your relationship enough time to mature. Don’t rush into becoming a parent, relocating together, or getting married. Instead, take it slowly and work on building trust before moving forward with your relationship.
#4. Be Honest and Upfront
Are you seeking a quick hookup or a long-term relationship? Is it possible to get married? Do you perceive yourself as a co-parent? Most single parents want to know what kind of commitment you want from them, as well as how much you’re willing to provide in return. In any event, it’s best to be open and honest when you first start dating.
Embracing open communication from the outset can enhance your relationship in another way: it encourages vulnerability, which can bring you closer together.
#5. Offer Emotional Support
Single mothers are put under a lot of financial and emotional stress in order to provide for their children. Be the type of partner who can listen without offering a solution to every issue. They’ll figure it out in due time. You can strengthen your friendship by providing support and encouragement.
Active listening can go a long way toward making a mate who is emotionally supportive. Being fully present in a conversation is what active listening entails. Active listeners are calm and patient, and they may offer clarifying questions or paraphrase what has been heard to demonstrate that they comprehend. As a result, your spouse may feel compelled to offer more information and speak for longer periods of time, perhaps strengthening your relationship.
#6. Be Trustworthy
Your partner, as a single mother, may have had previous experiences relying on someone who was not trustworthy. Make a name for yourself by being a reliable person. You can be accountable to them without being accountable to them.
Any connection needs to be built on a foundation of trust. You may strengthen it by being a trustworthy partner and following your promises, which will increase your partner’s trust in you.
#7. Stay Flexible
Single mothers have a lot on their plates. They have restricted availability due to working and caring for their children, making it difficult to book (and keep) dates. They may be late or have to cancel if a sitter cancels at the last minute or if a youngster becomes ill. It’s also difficult to go on a spontaneous date as a single parent because childcare is usually a primary priority.
#8. Don’t Discipline the Children
If your new girlfriend introduces you to her children, it’s a sign that they’re committed to your relationship. Disciplining the children, however, will most certainly remain off-limits to you unless they directly want it.
Allow a single parent to handle 100 percent of the discipline when you’re dating her. If you’re worried about the kids’ behavior, talk to your girlfriend privately about it. Never try to solve the problem on your own without first consulting them.
If you have serious reservations about your partner’s approach to discipline, autonomy, or family dynamics, the relationship may not be right for you, especially if you want to have children one day.
#9. Don’t Pass Judgment
It’s easy to look in from the outside and pass judgment on someone else’s parenting choices, and single mothers are frequently scrutinized for having children outside of traditional marriage. 5
This type of behavior will not be tolerated or beneficial to your relationship. Instead of casting judgment, try to understand how tough it is to be a single parent, and approach their choices and lifestyle with helpfulness, compassion, restraint, and inquiry.
Tips for single mum looking for dating
#1. Get ready for dating
We don’t mean how to look acceptable in the half-hour between your babysitter coming and you departing on a date when we say ‘getting ready.’ It’s all about knowing what you want out of a relationship.
If you’re a single mother dating for the first time in a long time, it’s likely that your last relationship didn’t go as planned and that your self-esteem has been shattered. Now is the time to consider the type of person you’d like to meet next and the type of relationship you’d like to have – but first, consider who you are right now.
Make three lists: the positive traits you have, the qualities you want in a partner, and the qualities you want in a relationship. You can share these with a trusted friend or keep them to yourself, but either way, they’ll make you feel better about yourself and make your dating goals more obvious.
This is a terrific approach to remind yourself that you now have a clean slate on which to build the relationship of your dreams. Dating a younger man, for example, may be at the top of an older woman’s priority list or it may not even be on the page. The key is that this is your list, your life, and your decision, whether you want to hunt for love or just date and have fun on your own terms.
#2. Make time for yourself
When dating as a single mother, it’s crucial to remember to set aside time for yourself. When you’re juggling a profession, parenting, and a new relationship, this is easier said than done, but any time you can commit to self-care will benefit you in other aspects of your life.
This can be as simple as making tiny adjustments to your weekly schedule, such as scheduling time to see friends, enrolling in an exercise class, or joining a support group for single mothers. Even a weekly pampering hour, in which you relax with a lengthy bath or put your feet up, might help you rejuvenate.
You may also make time for personal activity, such as organizing a reading club or pursuing a personal hobby or passion. Anything that is unrelated to your love life or your identity as a single mother will offer you a sense of productivity and identity, both of which create the kind of confidence that can be very attractive while dating.
#3. Embrace online dating
As a single mother, online dating platforms can be really beneficial. There are a lot of elements that make online dating considerably more acceptable, including a rising number of sites that offer a safe, effective service and help to foster genuine connections.
Time constraints for single parents make it difficult to spend evenings away from home. Instead of going out and meeting people, you may use online dating from the comfort of your own home, whether you’re bouncing a child on your knee or propped up on the sofa after the kids have gone to bed.
Online dating necessitates a “getting to know you” period during which you only contact matches via instant chatting or texts. This provides you with a fantastic opportunity to discover more about your possible date before making any commitments or meeting them in person.
You can join online dating organizations that cater to everyone from professionals to affluent women dating, and they cover all age groups, interests, and lifestyle choices. If you’re a regular reader of The Telegraph, for example, you may join Telegraph Dating to meet people with similar political and current-affairs views.
#4. Honesty is the best policy
When dating as a single mother, you may meet people who aren’t looking for a childless relationship. It’s better to find out sooner rather than later, so be honest about your circumstances and be proud of becoming a parent it’s the most important thing many of us have accomplished.
Your children are an important part of who you are and how you live your life, and if you want potential partners to feel the same way, state that you are a single mother on your profile. Mention your children early in the conversation if you’re meeting in person. The proper individual will not be turned away.
It’s also advisable to be open and honest with your kids about your wish to date again. Treat them like grownups and explain why you want to meet someone new, even if it seems ridiculous.
There is no hard and fast rule on when your new spouse and children should meet, but before they do, ask yourself – and both parties how they feel about it. Basically, if your new partner is becoming an important part of your life, it’s time for them to meet your kids. It might be frightening for everyone involved, but it is a necessary step that can be extremely rewarding.
Dating Sites for Single Parents
#1. Single Parent Match
“The world’s first and finest dating service for single mothers and fathers,” says the website. Single Parent Match has a number of unique features, including single parent date ideas, forums, online chat, and news. You may establish a profile, upload up to 26 photos, do a search, and send an infinite number of winks. You may also upgrade to a gold membership to gain access to even more features.
Single Parents Match has been in the dating industry since 2001, and its website is a treasure mine of interesting single parent-generated blogs.
#2. Single Parent Meet
With thousands of active users every day, SingleParentMeet is one of the largest online dating sites for single parents. SingleParentMeet has more than 50,000 active weekly visitors, according to Dating Scout, a dating site review website. 2 It is completely free to create a profile. To join, all you need is an email address and a few basic data.
It uses an optional token system with additional functions, as well as the ConnectMe feature, which allows members to call or text each other without providing personal contact information.
#3. Plenty of Fish
Plenty of Fish is a free online dating service with over 88 million users. It was formed in 2003 and is well-known throughout the world, particularly in the United States.
While it does not only serve lone parents, it does provide some intriguing statistics in this area. Plenty of Fish discovered that 44 percent of its female users are single mothers after polling its users. Furthermore, single mothers were able to locate a mate 10% faster than the average user. 3
Single parents can simply enter “single parents” as a search parameter in the “interests” area. A premium membership option is also available, which limits adverts and allows you to know if messages have been read or erased.
This website aims to bring people together in order to form meaningful, long-term relationships. eHarmony’s basic membership is free.
A 20-minute questionnaire asks you about your employment, pay, religion, and a variety of other traits and qualities. eHarmony then employs a proprietary algorithm to match you with potential partners based on your answers to the questions and what you’re looking for in a companion.
While this site isn’t just for single parents, users can underline the importance of particular characteristics in a possible partner, such as whether or not they have children and/or desire more.
Only you can decide whether dating a single mother is right for you. Don’t listen to family members or acquaintances who try to discourage you or indicate that they’re only searching for a stepparent figure. This is a rare occurrence.
Parents who are single are much more than just parents. They are grownups with their own wants and desires. Pay attention to the person you’re with and the relationship you’re forming.
Is it hard for single moms to date?
Dating is hard for everyone, but it is particularly challenging for single moms. Single moms do need more from their mates, like honesty, dependability, solvency, and kindness, and there are single men and women like this on the market they just might be more difficult to find.
Can you find love as a single mum?
Single mothers with children rarely give up the dream of finding love and making a life with someone. Sometimes everything just falls beautifully into place. The mom meets a new love who embraces both the parent and child and all three go on to live happily ever after.
Why single moms are great in bed?
There are plenty of things single mums have mastered the art of – multi-tasking, compromise, and patience to name a few. But it’s not just the ability to breathe deeply and count to ten that they rock at. When it comes to sex, single mums have got it going on – and it’s got nothing to do with gratitude.