Dating as a Single Parent: My Experience

By Unknown - October 04, 2018

So there I was, staring at a blank screen and wondering what to write about myself. I had just signed up to a dating site, and in all honesty was completely overwhelmed. It had been well over a year since me and my ex husband split, and being back in the dating world was daunting to say the least. If you've found yourself back in the singles pool after being married or in a long term relationship, I'm sure you can relate. 

Even just writing about myself was difficult, although I'd found 'me' again and regained my sense of individuality back after being part of a pair for so long, I wondered what I should say about myself. Should I mention I have a child? Am I even interesting anymore? Should I just be honest... Hello my names Soph, my whole world revolves around my child, I no longer do anything for myself ever... In fact, I cant remember the last time I had a poop in peace. I cant even go out at the weekends to meet anyone because my spare cash is spent on things like my son's expensive guitar lessons, not to mention last night puked on my head with a tummy bug. Come date me, yippee! Being a single mum (or a mum in general) is far from glamorous, but how much do you say? While on one hand I wanted to be honest, on the other I didn't want to send potential matches running for the hills!

After about an hour of worrying, deleting what I'd written over and over I decided enough was enough. I reminded myself that I'm still my own person, I am interesting and fun, and any decent guy would still be lucky to date me. Having confidence in yourself at the best of times can be difficult, but as a single, divorced mum it's something I've really had to work on. So this was a big step for me and was what allowed me to move forward. One of the main things I discovered from online dating is that a lot of people weren't who they said they were. This is always a worry when you're meeting strangers online, so the way I got around this was by video calling (Skype) after we'd been chatting for a but before I decided to meet them. Being a single mum my time was limited, while dating can be fun I didn't want to waste time with anyone who was clearly unsuitable or worse- chatting to someone who wasn't who they said they were. In all honesty, I nearly gave up and came off the dating sites for a while.

In total I was on for around seven months, until finally I met someone I really liked. He was Scottish, tall, dark and handsome- but most importantly he was a genuinely nice person, He was interested in my life, my son and even my dogs. He was close to his mum, respectful and a true gent- we had good conversation and balanced each other well. I decided to speak for a while first and get to know him better. He didn't give up the chase and we finally met up. We hit it off straight away and we haven't left each others side since. I know it doesn't always work out like that, but I guess I got lucky. I really think that knowing what I wanted for me and my son, and what my dealbreakers were really helped. While I dont think it's good to have a strict 'list' of things you want in a partner, it is important to learn from past mistakes. For example, if your ex partner worked nights and you were lonely and really hated that, it makes sense that you'd exclude anyone with a similar kind of working schedule. No one is perfect, but find a good match for you and what you want and you're much more likely to be happier in the long run. 

My advice to mums looking to date is don't rush anything, your children will of course always be your number one. Take your time, enjoy yourself and have fun but don't waste time- if something seems off then trust your gut. Video call before meeting to check the person is who they say they are, and also to see if you have any kind of initial chemistry. Having children doesn't make you any less desirable, but most of us being thrown back into the world of dating will need to build our self esteem first. If you are lacking in confidence I would advise to get reading and look online for self help videos... Confidence is sexy. What to wear? my advise would be to always go classy... I tend to dress smart casual as I feel most comfortable like that but wear what ever you feel comfortable in just keep it classy.

Hope this helps or at the very least made you smile...

Sophia x

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