Through my circle of friends and single moms I meet through this blog, I often hear cries of horror about the thought of dating.
Especially if you have kids.
What man in his right mind would consider dating a single mom? I can’t imagine getting out there again! My single-mom body is a wreck and I haven’t been on a date in 15 years!
These fears are totally normal — but don't let them hold you back.
I’ve spent the past 9 years dating as a single mom — including my current 3-year, committed relationship to a single dad — and let me tell you something: there is no better time to date than as a single mom.
Ready to start dating? Looking for a serious relationship? Our No. 1 recommendation is eharmony, which is consistently rated the most trusted dating site, and is designed specifically for those looking for meaningful, long-term connections. A+ Better Business Bureau rating, and reports that, “Every day, an average of 438 singles marry a match they found on eharmony.”
And get a babysitter, pronto.
Here are nine reasons why I believe dating as a single woman is better:
- Single moms already have their kids
- Single moms are kinder to themselves
- Single mothers are a stronger, happier version of themselves
- Single moms are sexier
- Single mothers accept their bodies
- Single mothers have become the women they're meant to be
- Single moms are not that annoying, needy girlfriend
- Single mothers are less susceptible to wasting time on the wrong guy
- Sex as a single mom is better
1. Single moms already have their kids.
Now you can date for you.
When I was dating in my twenties, I was looking for a husband with a healthy set of testicles with which to sire children.
I have them now. Two awesome, healthy ones, in fact. I can check that off my life to-do list and look for a man for love or companionship or sex – or all three.
The pressure is off as a single mom. Get started today by checking out my post on the best dating apps to use as a single mom!
2. Single moms are kinder to themselves…
…and that makes you a delight to be around.
Divorce is a bummer.
So many disappointments, self-blame, and broken hearts. To move on, you must forgive.
Forgive yourself. Forgive your ex. Forgive the friends and in-laws who you felt deserted you.
This kindness bleeds into your other relationships — including with your own confidence. Since becoming a single mother I have found that I am so much less judgmental of myself.
I am also far less critical of other people, including men. And guess what? They seem to like me more for it! Imagine that.
3. Single mothers are a stronger, happier version of themselves.
Being a single mom means that you have been through at least three life-altering experiences.
- You became a parent, which will blow your mind, heart, and life in incredible ways.
- You’ve found yourself single after a serious long-term relationship.
- You've faced the reason-defying triumphs that are required of single motherhood.
Whether the single part was by way of divorce, breakup, death or choice, it was a big deal, and that changed you.
You survived that, and not only are you better for it – you’re sexier for it.
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4. Single moms are sexier!
Confidence, a full heart, and life experience all equal being a richer, fuller person.
People are attracted to these single-mom qualities in a real, meaningful way.
Especially the people you want to attract, aka awesome men.
5. Single mothers accept their bodies.
You’ve carried and birthed and nursed a baby.
You know what an amazing thing the female body is.
It's imperfections? Who cares!
Age and childbearing have allowed you to enjoy your body for all it has to offer. Including sex.
6. Single mothers have become the women they're meant to be.
When I met my husband in my mid-twenties, I was still struggling to make my way professionally.
My longest friendships were still forming, and I was still figuring out what was most important to me.
Now, I have reached many milestones in my career, relationships, and inner life.
I know who am, and what I want. Which makes dating about 1,000 times easier.
7. Single moms are not like that annoying, needy girlfriend.
Women with kids have a whole lot of responsibilities. Our time is limited.
How could we be clingy? When we do have time for boyfriends, we make the very most of it. This is one thing that younger men looking to date older women tell me they like about that arrangement.
Throw a fit because he didn’t text for 3 days?
Please. I have lunches to make and doctor appointments to schedule.
8. Single mothers are less susceptible to wasting time on the wrong guy.
Because you have less time. Busy single moms have fewer lonely nights to fill, fewer dinners eaten alone.
There is less temptation to piddle away hours waiting on losers to commit just because you’re lonely.
Time is precious, and efficient moms know that the best way to spend time with a man is truly enjoying a really, really great one.
9. Sex as a single mom is better.
When you feel comfortable with your body, let go of past hang-ups, and are less critical of your partner – that’s when stuff gets good, including single-mom sex.
Not sure about getting out there again, and to be dating as a single mom? Keep reading below, and check out these tips for dating after divorce:
1. Recognize your fears as normal, but commit to dating anyway.
These fears might include:
- Being unattractive with your age/mom bod
- Having too much emotional baggage to attract a quality man
- Traumatizing your kids
- Getting your heart broken
Trust me: used-up, lumpy, wounded moms meet quality men every day of the week. Take it from me! Remember: For every divorced mom on the market, there is a lumpy, wounded single dad! Embrace your humanity — and his.
2. Rest assured: Your kids will be fine
Just don't date for the sake of looking for a husband, and for the love of God, do not move in any time soon. From my bestselling book, The Kickass Single Mom (Penguin):
One of the most-cited studies about single mothers is the harm caused to children by the instability of boyfriends moving in and out of their home and lives. Leading researcher on single mother families, Sarah S. McLalanahan of Princeton University, found that children raised by single mothers (who tend to be younger and poorer than married moms) are more likely to struggle academically, because these single moms have less stable relationships with their children’s fathers, and men overall, with new boyfriends and their children moving in and out of the family home. It is fatherlessness and poverty — not divorce or separated families per se — that put kids at risk.
We found that divorce and separation play a limited role in shaping children’s cognitive abilities, such as language and mathematical skills, which are tested in conventional school examinations. Maternal education and poverty are much more important in this area. In contrast, family instability plays a much bigger role than mothers’ education or poverty in the development of “social-emotional” skills. For example, family instability has twice as much influence as poverty does on whether children develop aggressive behavior. It is on par with poverty in causing childhood anxiety and shyness.
This research is important, and I urge you to heed it. But do not let it scare you into celibacy, or shame you into sneaking or lying about your romantic life, or staying up late worrying that decisions that led to this point have sentenced your children to a crappy life.
Far from it.
Research highlighting mothers’ relationship instability, which is within your control. The research is not about financially independent, unmarried moms who date a bunch of people without committing to them. The risks associated with “partner instability” have little to do with men who do not live in your house, who are not automatically relegated a boyfriend, move in with his children, and other major life changes that come with serious, committed relationships.
The risk to negative outcomes for your kids, we can assume, plummets if you have a healthy attitude about romance, and are financially stable enough that you are not compulsively tempted to co-habit out of financial destitution, rather than healthy commitment to a shared future with a man or woman you love.
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3. Download a dating app and get to it!
Ready to start dating? Looking for a serious relationship? Our No. 1 recommendation is eharmony, which is consistently rated the most trusted dating site, and is designed specifically for those looking for meaningful, long-term connections. A+ Better Business Bureau rating, and claims “Every day, an average of 438 singles marry a match they found on eharmony.” 3-month free guarantee.
If you are ready to get out there, but need some online dating advice, here you go!
- Where you live. Each city has its own vibe on each dating site for single moms. For example, OKCupid is among the most popular in New York City where I live, and is the best resource for quality dating. But in other cities, OKC is used mostly for hooking up. Ask your friends. Ask men you date. Check out a few.
- Each site has different types of men as members. It’s just like looking for a job – you may have your resume posted on Monster.com, Indeed, and a couple of industry-specific sites. Again, check out a few that others recommend, use their free trials or promotions, and see which has the best selection for you. Likely, you will keep a few accounts going at the same time. Sometimes, more is more!
- Don’t give up too soon. Dating is about dating – meeting new people, learning about yourself, your tastes and needs at this time of your life. Just because a date doesn’t lead to marriage does not make it a disaster! Did you have fun? Meet a nice person? Learn something about yourself? Consider it a success!
- There is nothing unique about the men who date online. I often hear women say: “I'm giving up on online dating apps! All the guys there are losers!” That is like saying: “I'm going to cut off all my friends who are on Instagram! Only losers are on Instagram!” After all, online dating is 100% normal and commonplace, nothing to be ashamed of and NOT an activity unique to any particular type of person. If online dating isn't working for you now, take a break, assess how you might approach dating in general, and then try again in a few months.
- Online dating is what you put into it. If you want to meet honest people, be honest yourself. Here is a deep-dive into why you should be totally honest on your dating profile about your salary and income, as well as whether you have kids.
- Have fun! The better your attitude about dating and meeting men, the better your experience — no matter the outcome.
The internet is just a medium for meeting men. A tool for connecting with other humans. Like Facebook or Instagram, but with more potential for sex, romance and STDs (kidding / not kidding).
Keep at it, try new things and keep an open mind. Also: HAVE FUN!
In the meantime, you can also consider dating apps as simply another social media. I did.