Am I Single Mother By Choice?

by mssinglemama on November 8, 2007

Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
***UPDATE***

If you’re here to find out how to change your Facebook or MySpace relationship status, click here.

Once you’re done – come back and read this…

“A relationship isn’t official until it’s on Facebook!” a young co-worker told me this morning. “My friend got engaged and two weeks later the announcement still wasn’t on Facebook. We all thought she had called it off or something.” Virtual social networks have changed the dating landscape… forever.

After my divorce I created a MySpace page. I was an innocent to the social networking world and had no idea how much it would change my dating experiences. My single friend was over the other night venting about a frustrating experience she’s having with an ex boyfriend right now.

“I’m not sure if he’ll call me tonight or not. I left him a comment today asking if he was going out and haven’t heard back.”

MySpace and Facebook have now effectively changed the way we date. Now we can call, text, e-mail or better yet – leave a MySpace comment or give someone a Facebook poke.

Here’s my translation of the MySpace and Facebook Dating Codes.

  1. Add each other as friends. This is really no big deal and doesn’t mean much. But at least now you have unbridled access to their page, photos, blog, etc.
  2. Leave cute, flirty comments on each other’s page. A good sign. He’s writing on your page, you’re writing on his. All is well in the world.
  3. Move each other up to “top friend” status. This is a big step and could indicate a future relationship status change.
  4. Continue with more flirtatious comments like “last night was amazing, you make me crazy.” Getting closer.
  5. Change your relationship status. The biggest step. Now you’re taken. You’re off the virtual market and you’re shouting loud and proud to the rest of the world that you’re happy and committed.

In conversations with my single girlfriends the old burning questions like, “is he a good kisser?,” “does he call often?,” “does he make you laugh?” are still completely relevant but added into the mix are, “did he move you into his top friends?,” “who else is on his page?”

The Virtual Red Flag

Some men are all over your MySpace page while you’re dating…others will be silent, never leaving a comment or moving you into their top friends. Strange. A red flag. A new red flag. The virtual red flag.

The Relationship Status Change: Who brings it up…how does it happen?

A case in point: my current flame took matters into his own hands. Last night when we were falling asleep he said, “I changed my relationship status on Facebook.” What??? Wow!!! I didn’t know what to think. We’ve only been together for 3 weeks and now Facebook says we’re “in a relationship.”

“You want me to be your girlfriend?”

He says, “ya…is that okay?” He’s confused by my reaction. I mean, he’s a guy and he’s completely crazy about me. We’ve been seeing each other steadily for three weeks – why not change his status? Meanwhile my brain is on fire with a mix of happiness and fear. I feel like I’m in the 8th grade and a cute boy has just asked me out.

I can’t change my MySpace relationship status just yet- it’s too early. That page is like my temple of autonomy. I break the news to him, “I’ll change my Facebook account status, but not my MySpace account.” Hmmm….a virtual compromise.

This morning I go onto Facebook. Yep, there he is – “in a relationship.” I go to my profile and click in relationship (there is a special section for this). I change my status. Then Facebook asks me, “who are you in a relationship with?” I pick his name. Then it says, “Kris is now your boyfriend. We will be sending him a confirmation to see if he accepts your relationship request.”

What??? Oh my god…I have a boyfriend and they’re sending him a relationship request? I’m actually embarrassed. I call him immediately, “Facebook has just informed me that you’re my boyfriend, but you have to agree to it.” He laughed. “I’ll accept, I won’t leave you hanging. Later… girlfriend.” I feel like I’m 14 again.

A boy actually asked me out – even though he did it virtually I still think it’s absolutely adorable. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been asked out. Usually it’s me looking at the guy like, “so are you my boyfriend?”

See? This virtual world is good for something.

UPDATE/ Additional notes:

Crazy how MySpace and Facebook have changed the way we date. In just a few seconds you can scope out your ex’s relationship status, flirtatous comments and daily activities. Twitter makes it even worse. Maybe I should go on a delete binge tonight.

How often do you delete your the Ex-Profiles on MySpace? Can you do it? Do you think I can?

Deleting an ex is like permanently severing all ties…but then I think of the ex’s who were my friends – the ones I genuinely want to stay in touch with. And then I think of the sting when I see their “latest activity.”

I vote for delete.
Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
***UPDATE***

If you’re here to find out how to change your Facebook or MySpace relationship status, click here.

Once you’re done – come back and read this…

“A relationship isn’t official until it’s on Facebook!” a young co-worker told me this morning. “My friend got engaged and two weeks later the announcement still wasn’t on Facebook. We all thought she had called it off or something.” Virtual social networks have changed the dating landscape… forever.

After my divorce I created a MySpace page. I was an innocent to the social networking world and had no idea how much it would change my dating experiences. My single friend was over the other night venting about a frustrating experience she’s having with an ex boyfriend right now.

“I’m not sure if he’ll call me tonight or not. I left him a comment today asking if he was going out and haven’t heard back.”

MySpace and Facebook have now effectively changed the way we date. Now we can call, text, e-mail or better yet – leave a MySpace comment or give someone a Facebook poke.

Here’s my translation of the MySpace and Facebook Dating Codes.

  1. Add each other as friends. This is really no big deal and doesn’t mean much. But at least now you have unbridled access to their page, photos, blog, etc.
  2. Leave cute, flirty comments on each other’s page. A good sign. He’s writing on your page, you’re writing on his. All is well in the world.
  3. Move each other up to “top friend” status. This is a big step and could indicate a future relationship status change.
  4. Continue with more flirtatious comments like “last night was amazing, you make me crazy.” Getting closer.
  5. Change your relationship status. The biggest step. Now you’re taken. You’re off the virtual market and you’re shouting loud and proud to the rest of the world that you’re happy and committed.

In conversations with my single girlfriends the old burning questions like, “is he a good kisser?,” “does he call often?,” “does he make you laugh?” are still completely relevant but added into the mix are, “did he move you into his top friends?,” “who else is on his page?”

The Virtual Red Flag

Some men are all over your MySpace page while you’re dating…others will be silent, never leaving a comment or moving you into their top friends. Strange. A red flag. A new red flag. The virtual red flag.

The Relationship Status Change: Who brings it up…how does it happen?

A case in point: my current flame took matters into his own hands. Last night when we were falling asleep he said, “I changed my relationship status on Facebook.” What??? Wow!!! I didn’t know what to think. We’ve only been together for 3 weeks and now Facebook says we’re “in a relationship.”

“You want me to be your girlfriend?”

He says, “ya…is that okay?” He’s confused by my reaction. I mean, he’s a guy and he’s completely crazy about me. We’ve been seeing each other steadily for three weeks – why not change his status? Meanwhile my brain is on fire with a mix of happiness and fear. I feel like I’m in the 8th grade and a cute boy has just asked me out.

I can’t change my MySpace relationship status just yet- it’s too early. That page is like my temple of autonomy. I break the news to him, “I’ll change my Facebook account status, but not my MySpace account.” Hmmm….a virtual compromise.

This morning I go onto Facebook. Yep, there he is – “in a relationship.” I go to my profile and click in relationship (there is a special section for this). I change my status. Then Facebook asks me, “who are you in a relationship with?” I pick his name. Then it says, “Kris is now your boyfriend. We will be sending him a confirmation to see if he accepts your relationship request.”

What??? Oh my god…I have a boyfriend and they’re sending him a relationship request? I’m actually embarrassed. I call him immediately, “Facebook has just informed me that you’re my boyfriend, but you have to agree to it.” He laughed. “I’ll accept, I won’t leave you hanging. Later… girlfriend.” I feel like I’m 14 again.

A boy actually asked me out – even though he did it virtually I still think it’s absolutely adorable. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been asked out. Usually it’s me looking at the guy like, “so are you my boyfriend?”

See? This virtual world is good for something.

UPDATE/ Additional notes:

Crazy how MySpace and Facebook have changed the way we date. In just a few seconds you can scope out your ex’s relationship status, flirtatous comments and daily activities. Twitter makes it even worse. Maybe I should go on a delete binge tonight.

How often do you delete your the Ex-Profiles on MySpace? Can you do it? Do you think I can?

Deleting an ex is like permanently severing all ties…but then I think of the ex’s who were my friends – the ones I genuinely want to stay in touch with. And then I think of the sting when I see their “latest activity.”

I vote for delete.
Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
***UPDATE***

If you’re here to find out how to change your Facebook or MySpace relationship status, click here.

Once you’re done – come back and read this…

“A relationship isn’t official until it’s on Facebook!” a young co-worker told me this morning. “My friend got engaged and two weeks later the announcement still wasn’t on Facebook. We all thought she had called it off or something.” Virtual social networks have changed the dating landscape… forever.

After my divorce I created a MySpace page. I was an innocent to the social networking world and had no idea how much it would change my dating experiences. My single friend was over the other night venting about a frustrating experience she’s having with an ex boyfriend right now.

“I’m not sure if he’ll call me tonight or not. I left him a comment today asking if he was going out and haven’t heard back.”

MySpace and Facebook have now effectively changed the way we date. Now we can call, text, e-mail or better yet – leave a MySpace comment or give someone a Facebook poke.

Here’s my translation of the MySpace and Facebook Dating Codes.

  1. Add each other as friends. This is really no big deal and doesn’t mean much. But at least now you have unbridled access to their page, photos, blog, etc.
  2. Leave cute, flirty comments on each other’s page. A good sign. He’s writing on your page, you’re writing on his. All is well in the world.
  3. Move each other up to “top friend” status. This is a big step and could indicate a future relationship status change.
  4. Continue with more flirtatious comments like “last night was amazing, you make me crazy.” Getting closer.
  5. Change your relationship status. The biggest step. Now you’re taken. You’re off the virtual market and you’re shouting loud and proud to the rest of the world that you’re happy and committed.

In conversations with my single girlfriends the old burning questions like, “is he a good kisser?,” “does he call often?,” “does he make you laugh?” are still completely relevant but added into the mix are, “did he move you into his top friends?,” “who else is on his page?”

The Virtual Red Flag

Some men are all over your MySpace page while you’re dating…others will be silent, never leaving a comment or moving you into their top friends. Strange. A red flag. A new red flag. The virtual red flag.

The Relationship Status Change: Who brings it up…how does it happen?

A case in point: my current flame took matters into his own hands. Last night when we were falling asleep he said, “I changed my relationship status on Facebook.” What??? Wow!!! I didn’t know what to think. We’ve only been together for 3 weeks and now Facebook says we’re “in a relationship.”

“You want me to be your girlfriend?”

He says, “ya…is that okay?” He’s confused by my reaction. I mean, he’s a guy and he’s completely crazy about me. We’ve been seeing each other steadily for three weeks – why not change his status? Meanwhile my brain is on fire with a mix of happiness and fear. I feel like I’m in the 8th grade and a cute boy has just asked me out.

I can’t change my MySpace relationship status just yet- it’s too early. That page is like my temple of autonomy. I break the news to him, “I’ll change my Facebook account status, but not my MySpace account.” Hmmm….a virtual compromise.

This morning I go onto Facebook. Yep, there he is – “in a relationship.” I go to my profile and click in relationship (there is a special section for this). I change my status. Then Facebook asks me, “who are you in a relationship with?” I pick his name. Then it says, “Kris is now your boyfriend. We will be sending him a confirmation to see if he accepts your relationship request.”

What??? Oh my god…I have a boyfriend and they’re sending him a relationship request? I’m actually embarrassed. I call him immediately, “Facebook has just informed me that you’re my boyfriend, but you have to agree to it.” He laughed. “I’ll accept, I won’t leave you hanging. Later… girlfriend.” I feel like I’m 14 again.

A boy actually asked me out – even though he did it virtually I still think it’s absolutely adorable. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been asked out. Usually it’s me looking at the guy like, “so are you my boyfriend?”

See? This virtual world is good for something.

UPDATE/ Additional notes:

Crazy how MySpace and Facebook have changed the way we date. In just a few seconds you can scope out your ex’s relationship status, flirtatous comments and daily activities. Twitter makes it even worse. Maybe I should go on a delete binge tonight.

How often do you delete your the Ex-Profiles on MySpace? Can you do it? Do you think I can?

Deleting an ex is like permanently severing all ties…but then I think of the ex’s who were my friends – the ones I genuinely want to stay in touch with. And then I think of the sting when I see their “latest activity.”

I vote for delete.
I have seen a few google searches with this question pointing to my blog. Not sure why they’re taking you here, but it’s a very valid question. So here goes.

My friend Abby has been a single mom for over three years now and one night when we were on a crazy girls night, I had struck up a conversation with a charming dentist. He seemed interested so I thought, “better get it out on the table.” But this is how I phrased it, “Well, you’ll never actually be able to date me.” He looked surprised, “why not?”

“Because I have a baby.”

“Oh. Well, that must be fun.” After some awkward small talk he disappeared.

I ran up to Abby. “That guy just vanished after I told him about Benjamin!” She pulled me aside and whispered, “Oh no. You can’t tell them that right away. You’ve got to wait until at least a couple of dates.” What? I was floored. She just didn’t tell them.

“They have to fall for you first,” she insisted, “and then the baby thing is just like an added bonus – and ‘oh by the way, I do all of this and I’m an amazing single mom.’ It works!”

I am skeptical of Abbey’s theory. Here’s why, if the baby thing is too much for them to handle, why find that out two dates in? And wouldn’t that be a form of dishonesty?

I’ve decided that it depends on a few factors. If you are out for a night filled with multiple encounters with men on the dance floor or behind a bar – don’t mention it. Unless one of these men grabs your attention, you end up hitting it off and you feel like there’s potential for a future date – then dish. But make sure you frame it positively. The dentist was scared off because of the way I phrased it. I made it an obstacle when it really isn’t and I made it sound like Benjamin was a hinderance.

Having a baby or a child in your life is an amazing thing. Sure it’s an obstacle to dating men who don’t care about you, but not when you’re dating men who are genuinely into you. Beware of scaring off the good ones by making it sound like a bad thing, one of my nasty little habits.

Here’s a male perspective. My single friend Dave was out recently and called me the next day after bumping into a few single moms at a bar. “We were hitting it off and then they told me they have a baby. But they made it sound like it was a horrible thing. Their bad attitude was totally unattractive and I just had to walk away.”

When I told my new boyfriend about Benjamin it was the first night we met. But I waited until the end of the night, when I knew I would want to see him again. I brought it up within the flow of conversation and had a smile on my face. “So…I have a little bit of baggage, and he weighs 22 pounds. If you want to see me again, I just thought I should get that out there..so…” I trailed off and looked down into my lap, hoping I wouldn’t see fear in his eyes. “Do you have a picture?” He looked at Benjamin on my phone and smiled, a genuine smile. “He’s a cutie. Want to play another game of pool?”

My conclusion – having a child is as big of deal as you make it. And we can’t expect a man who’s never had a child before to possibly understand on a first date or on a first encounter. That comes later. But there’s no sense in not giving him a chance to understand.

When do you tell a man you’re a single mom?
Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
***UPDATE***

If you’re here to find out how to change your Facebook or MySpace relationship status, click here.

Once you’re done – come back and read this…

“A relationship isn’t official until it’s on Facebook!” a young co-worker told me this morning. “My friend got engaged and two weeks later the announcement still wasn’t on Facebook. We all thought she had called it off or something.” Virtual social networks have changed the dating landscape… forever.

After my divorce I created a MySpace page. I was an innocent to the social networking world and had no idea how much it would change my dating experiences. My single friend was over the other night venting about a frustrating experience she’s having with an ex boyfriend right now.

“I’m not sure if he’ll call me tonight or not. I left him a comment today asking if he was going out and haven’t heard back.”

MySpace and Facebook have now effectively changed the way we date. Now we can call, text, e-mail or better yet – leave a MySpace comment or give someone a Facebook poke.

Here’s my translation of the MySpace and Facebook Dating Codes.

  1. Add each other as friends. This is really no big deal and doesn’t mean much. But at least now you have unbridled access to their page, photos, blog, etc.
  2. Leave cute, flirty comments on each other’s page. A good sign. He’s writing on your page, you’re writing on his. All is well in the world.
  3. Move each other up to “top friend” status. This is a big step and could indicate a future relationship status change.
  4. Continue with more flirtatious comments like “last night was amazing, you make me crazy.” Getting closer.
  5. Change your relationship status. The biggest step. Now you’re taken. You’re off the virtual market and you’re shouting loud and proud to the rest of the world that you’re happy and committed.

In conversations with my single girlfriends the old burning questions like, “is he a good kisser?,” “does he call often?,” “does he make you laugh?” are still completely relevant but added into the mix are, “did he move you into his top friends?,” “who else is on his page?”

The Virtual Red Flag

Some men are all over your MySpace page while you’re dating…others will be silent, never leaving a comment or moving you into their top friends. Strange. A red flag. A new red flag. The virtual red flag.

The Relationship Status Change: Who brings it up…how does it happen?

A case in point: my current flame took matters into his own hands. Last night when we were falling asleep he said, “I changed my relationship status on Facebook.” What??? Wow!!! I didn’t know what to think. We’ve only been together for 3 weeks and now Facebook says we’re “in a relationship.”

“You want me to be your girlfriend?”

He says, “ya…is that okay?” He’s confused by my reaction. I mean, he’s a guy and he’s completely crazy about me. We’ve been seeing each other steadily for three weeks – why not change his status? Meanwhile my brain is on fire with a mix of happiness and fear. I feel like I’m in the 8th grade and a cute boy has just asked me out.

I can’t change my MySpace relationship status just yet- it’s too early. That page is like my temple of autonomy. I break the news to him, “I’ll change my Facebook account status, but not my MySpace account.” Hmmm….a virtual compromise.

This morning I go onto Facebook. Yep, there he is – “in a relationship.” I go to my profile and click in relationship (there is a special section for this). I change my status. Then Facebook asks me, “who are you in a relationship with?” I pick his name. Then it says, “Kris is now your boyfriend. We will be sending him a confirmation to see if he accepts your relationship request.”

What??? Oh my god…I have a boyfriend and they’re sending him a relationship request? I’m actually embarrassed. I call him immediately, “Facebook has just informed me that you’re my boyfriend, but you have to agree to it.” He laughed. “I’ll accept, I won’t leave you hanging. Later… girlfriend.” I feel like I’m 14 again.

A boy actually asked me out – even though he did it virtually I still think it’s absolutely adorable. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been asked out. Usually it’s me looking at the guy like, “so are you my boyfriend?”

See? This virtual world is good for something.

UPDATE/ Additional notes:

Crazy how MySpace and Facebook have changed the way we date. In just a few seconds you can scope out your ex’s relationship status, flirtatous comments and daily activities. Twitter makes it even worse. Maybe I should go on a delete binge tonight.

How often do you delete your the Ex-Profiles on MySpace? Can you do it? Do you think I can?

Deleting an ex is like permanently severing all ties…but then I think of the ex’s who were my friends – the ones I genuinely want to stay in touch with. And then I think of the sting when I see their “latest activity.”

I vote for delete.
Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
***UPDATE***

If you’re here to find out how to change your Facebook or MySpace relationship status, click here.

Once you’re done – come back and read this…

“A relationship isn’t official until it’s on Facebook!” a young co-worker told me this morning. “My friend got engaged and two weeks later the announcement still wasn’t on Facebook. We all thought she had called it off or something.” Virtual social networks have changed the dating landscape… forever.

After my divorce I created a MySpace page. I was an innocent to the social networking world and had no idea how much it would change my dating experiences. My single friend was over the other night venting about a frustrating experience she’s having with an ex boyfriend right now.

“I’m not sure if he’ll call me tonight or not. I left him a comment today asking if he was going out and haven’t heard back.”

MySpace and Facebook have now effectively changed the way we date. Now we can call, text, e-mail or better yet – leave a MySpace comment or give someone a Facebook poke.

Here’s my translation of the MySpace and Facebook Dating Codes.

  1. Add each other as friends. This is really no big deal and doesn’t mean much. But at least now you have unbridled access to their page, photos, blog, etc.
  2. Leave cute, flirty comments on each other’s page. A good sign. He’s writing on your page, you’re writing on his. All is well in the world.
  3. Move each other up to “top friend” status. This is a big step and could indicate a future relationship status change.
  4. Continue with more flirtatious comments like “last night was amazing, you make me crazy.” Getting closer.
  5. Change your relationship status. The biggest step. Now you’re taken. You’re off the virtual market and you’re shouting loud and proud to the rest of the world that you’re happy and committed.

In conversations with my single girlfriends the old burning questions like, “is he a good kisser?,” “does he call often?,” “does he make you laugh?” are still completely relevant but added into the mix are, “did he move you into his top friends?,” “who else is on his page?”

The Virtual Red Flag

Some men are all over your MySpace page while you’re dating…others will be silent, never leaving a comment or moving you into their top friends. Strange. A red flag. A new red flag. The virtual red flag.

The Relationship Status Change: Who brings it up…how does it happen?

A case in point: my current flame took matters into his own hands. Last night when we were falling asleep he said, “I changed my relationship status on Facebook.” What??? Wow!!! I didn’t know what to think. We’ve only been together for 3 weeks and now Facebook says we’re “in a relationship.”

“You want me to be your girlfriend?”

He says, “ya…is that okay?” He’s confused by my reaction. I mean, he’s a guy and he’s completely crazy about me. We’ve been seeing each other steadily for three weeks – why not change his status? Meanwhile my brain is on fire with a mix of happiness and fear. I feel like I’m in the 8th grade and a cute boy has just asked me out.

I can’t change my MySpace relationship status just yet- it’s too early. That page is like my temple of autonomy. I break the news to him, “I’ll change my Facebook account status, but not my MySpace account.” Hmmm….a virtual compromise.

This morning I go onto Facebook. Yep, there he is – “in a relationship.” I go to my profile and click in relationship (there is a special section for this). I change my status. Then Facebook asks me, “who are you in a relationship with?” I pick his name. Then it says, “Kris is now your boyfriend. We will be sending him a confirmation to see if he accepts your relationship request.”

What??? Oh my god…I have a boyfriend and they’re sending him a relationship request? I’m actually embarrassed. I call him immediately, “Facebook has just informed me that you’re my boyfriend, but you have to agree to it.” He laughed. “I’ll accept, I won’t leave you hanging. Later… girlfriend.” I feel like I’m 14 again.

A boy actually asked me out – even though he did it virtually I still think it’s absolutely adorable. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been asked out. Usually it’s me looking at the guy like, “so are you my boyfriend?”

See? This virtual world is good for something.

UPDATE/ Additional notes:

Crazy how MySpace and Facebook have changed the way we date. In just a few seconds you can scope out your ex’s relationship status, flirtatous comments and daily activities. Twitter makes it even worse. Maybe I should go on a delete binge tonight.

How often do you delete your the Ex-Profiles on MySpace? Can you do it? Do you think I can?

Deleting an ex is like permanently severing all ties…but then I think of the ex’s who were my friends – the ones I genuinely want to stay in touch with. And then I think of the sting when I see their “latest activity.”

I vote for delete.
I have seen a few google searches with this question pointing to my blog. Not sure why they’re taking you here, but it’s a very valid question. So here goes.

My friend Abby has been a single mom for over three years now and one night when we were on a crazy girls night, I had struck up a conversation with a charming dentist. He seemed interested so I thought, “better get it out on the table.” But this is how I phrased it, “Well, you’ll never actually be able to date me.” He looked surprised, “why not?”

“Because I have a baby.”

“Oh. Well, that must be fun.” After some awkward small talk he disappeared.

I ran up to Abby. “That guy just vanished after I told him about Benjamin!” She pulled me aside and whispered, “Oh no. You can’t tell them that right away. You’ve got to wait until at least a couple of dates.” What? I was floored. She just didn’t tell them.

“They have to fall for you first,” she insisted, “and then the baby thing is just like an added bonus – and ‘oh by the way, I do all of this and I’m an amazing single mom.’ It works!”

I am skeptical of Abbey’s theory. Here’s why, if the baby thing is too much for them to handle, why find that out two dates in? And wouldn’t that be a form of dishonesty?

I’ve decided that it depends on a few factors. If you are out for a night filled with multiple encounters with men on the dance floor or behind a bar – don’t mention it. Unless one of these men grabs your attention, you end up hitting it off and you feel like there’s potential for a future date – then dish. But make sure you frame it positively. The dentist was scared off because of the way I phrased it. I made it an obstacle when it really isn’t and I made it sound like Benjamin was a hinderance.

Having a baby or a child in your life is an amazing thing. Sure it’s an obstacle to dating men who don’t care about you, but not when you’re dating men who are genuinely into you. Beware of scaring off the good ones by making it sound like a bad thing, one of my nasty little habits.

Here’s a male perspective. My single friend Dave was out recently and called me the next day after bumping into a few single moms at a bar. “We were hitting it off and then they told me they have a baby. But they made it sound like it was a horrible thing. Their bad attitude was totally unattractive and I just had to walk away.”

When I told my new boyfriend about Benjamin it was the first night we met. But I waited until the end of the night, when I knew I would want to see him again. I brought it up within the flow of conversation and had a smile on my face. “So…I have a little bit of baggage, and he weighs 22 pounds. If you want to see me again, I just thought I should get that out there..so…” I trailed off and looked down into my lap, hoping I wouldn’t see fear in his eyes. “Do you have a picture?” He looked at Benjamin on my phone and smiled, a genuine smile. “He’s a cutie. Want to play another game of pool?”

My conclusion – having a child is as big of deal as you make it. And we can’t expect a man who’s never had a child before to possibly understand on a first date or on a first encounter. That comes later. But there’s no sense in not giving him a chance to understand.

When do you tell a man you’re a single mom?
Six weeks ago I had reached a point of complete contentment with being single.

Over the past year and a half I have been looking, searching for someone. There was a pattern. I liked a guy. We hit it off. I scared him off. My friends told me, “You’re calling him too much.”

“What? I have a child. Do I really have to play these dating games anymore?”

“Great,” I said, “Then I’ll get rid of him quickly. If he doesn’t want a phone call from me, why would I want to be with him?” It was like a reflex, something inside of me trying to protect our little life from being broken.

“There are rules,” my friends would say. Rules? Oh, yeah. Those damn rules. I used to play by the rules. I used to be a dating diva, often dating more than one guy at once. It was my independence that attracted them. But after being married for two years and a mother for nearly two years I have completely lost my edge. It just can’t happen.

I can’t see myself ever returning to those days of care free dating.

So, what’s a single mom to do? Forget about it. And that’s what I did. I decided not to date a guy who makes me feel like I have to play by the rules. No more games. They are either completely into me or they aren’t. And I have to be completely into them because this single thing is actually pretty damn cool.

I was at a coffee shop, enjoying my new found indifference when fate took over.

My phone rang. It was an old friend and she desperately needed a ride out to a bar in the suburbs. A place where I never venture past dark. I hate the suburbs, especially bars in the suburbs.

I can’t say no – she’s desperate.We get there and I find out she’s meeting two completely drunk men in their late 50’s. Not my bag. I head outside for a cigarette.

I’m still enjoying my own company, not striking up conversations with any of the men around me – completely content. And then a guy sits down at my table. He starts up a conversation. I’m witty, I’m funny, I’m happy because I just don’t care. And then his friend walks in, “This is Kris,” he says.

Oh no. Oh God, he’s cute, really cute. He’s wearing a vintage suit, he is tall, thick dark brown hair, big green eyes. I couldn’t have dreamt up a better guy for me – just based on looks. I still didn’t care. But I wanted to find out – is he intelligent, is he funny? I can’t go back inside and talk to the old creepy men.

So I test the waters with some witty comments a guy for me would understand. He sits up in his chair.

“We’ve got a smart one here,” his buddy says to him. He nods. His eyes are light now, his smile is huge and he’s actually excited… so am I. Damn it. 

From this point on it’s all over. We were laughing and talking all night. Before I left the bar I got his number, called his phone so he had mine and invited them out for Friday night. When we left, Kris grabbed me in a big hug. A hug that was so incredibly refreshing. He’s young, he’s innocent, he doesn’t have any baggage. He just wants to be with me. There were no rules in that hug.

That night I had a dream – about him.

We were kissing, we were together. What??? I had a dream about a man? This never happens. I was married for two years and had only a few dreams about my own husband. I woke up and decided to text him. That dream was an incredible tease.

“Thanks for the hug.”

He wrote back, “No problem, you’re a sweetie and very hugable. I’ve got class until 8:00 – after that I’ll be feeling like calling you.” He called at 8:15. No stress. Completely adorable and now it’s been three weeks. We talk on the phone at least two times day, we see each other two nights a week. I don’t feel myself losing control because this time around I am gauging this relationship against my content single frame of mind.

Note to self – you can not be happy with someone else, unless you are completely happy with yourself.

Getting there is the tough part.

**UPDATE**

To find out what happened with Kris, click here.
***UPDATE***

If you’re here to find out how to change your Facebook or MySpace relationship status, click here.

Once you’re done – come back and read this…

“A relationship isn’t official until it’s on Facebook!” a young co-worker told me this morning. “My friend got engaged and two weeks later the announcement still wasn’t on Facebook. We all thought she had called it off or something.” Virtual social networks have changed the dating landscape… forever.

After my divorce I created a MySpace page. I was an innocent to the social networking world and had no idea how much it would change my dating experiences. My single friend was over the other night venting about a frustrating experience she’s having with an ex boyfriend right now.

“I’m not sure if he’ll call me tonight or not. I left him a comment today asking if he was going out and haven’t heard back.”

MySpace and Facebook have now effectively changed the way we date. Now we can call, text, e-mail or better yet – leave a MySpace comment or give someone a Facebook poke.

Here’s my translation of the MySpace and Facebook Dating Codes.

  1. Add each other as friends. This is really no big deal and doesn’t mean much. But at least now you have unbridled access to their page, photos, blog, etc.
  2. Leave cute, flirty comments on each other’s page. A good sign. He’s writing on your page, you’re writing on his. All is well in the world.
  3. Move each other up to “top friend” status. This is a big step and could indicate a future relationship status change.
  4. Continue with more flirtatious comments like “last night was amazing, you make me crazy.” Getting closer.
  5. Change your relationship status. The biggest step. Now you’re taken. You’re off the virtual market and you’re shouting loud and proud to the rest of the world that you’re happy and committed.

In conversations with my single girlfriends the old burning questions like, “is he a good kisser?,” “does he call often?,” “does he make you laugh?” are still completely relevant but added into the mix are, “did he move you into his top friends?,” “who else is on his page?”

The Virtual Red Flag

Some men are all over your MySpace page while you’re dating…others will be silent, never leaving a comment or moving you into their top friends. Strange. A red flag. A new red flag. The virtual red flag.

The Relationship Status Change: Who brings it up…how does it happen?

A case in point: my current flame took matters into his own hands. Last night when we were falling asleep he said, “I changed my relationship status on Facebook.” What??? Wow!!! I didn’t know what to think. We’ve only been together for 3 weeks and now Facebook says we’re “in a relationship.”

“You want me to be your girlfriend?”

He says, “ya…is that okay?” He’s confused by my reaction. I mean, he’s a guy and he’s completely crazy about me. We’ve been seeing each other steadily for three weeks – why not change his status? Meanwhile my brain is on fire with a mix of happiness and fear. I feel like I’m in the 8th grade and a cute boy has just asked me out.

I can’t change my MySpace relationship status just yet- it’s too early. That page is like my temple of autonomy. I break the news to him, “I’ll change my Facebook account status, but not my MySpace account.” Hmmm….a virtual compromise.

This morning I go onto Facebook. Yep, there he is – “in a relationship.” I go to my profile and click in relationship (there is a special section for this). I change my status. Then Facebook asks me, “who are you in a relationship with?” I pick his name. Then it says, “Kris is now your boyfriend. We will be sending him a confirmation to see if he accepts your relationship request.”

What??? Oh my god…I have a boyfriend and they’re sending him a relationship request? I’m actually embarrassed. I call him immediately, “Facebook has just informed me that you’re my boyfriend, but you have to agree to it.” He laughed. “I’ll accept, I won’t leave you hanging. Later… girlfriend.” I feel like I’m 14 again.

A boy actually asked me out – even though he did it virtually I still think it’s absolutely adorable. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been asked out. Usually it’s me looking at the guy like, “so are you my boyfriend?”

See? This virtual world is good for something.

UPDATE/ Additional notes:

Crazy how MySpace and Facebook have changed the way we date. In just a few seconds you can scope out your ex’s relationship status, flirtatous comments and daily activities. Twitter makes it even worse. Maybe I should go on a delete binge tonight.

How often do you delete your the Ex-Profiles on MySpace? Can you do it? Do you think I can?

Deleting an ex is like permanently severing all ties…but then I think of the ex’s who were my friends – the ones I genuinely want to stay in touch with. And then I think of the sting when I see their “latest activity.”

I vote for delete.
I have seen a few google searches with this question pointing to my blog. Not sure why they’re taking you here, but it’s a very valid question. So here goes.

My friend Abby has been a single mom for over three years now and one night when we were on a crazy girls night, I had struck up a conversation with a charming dentist. He seemed interested so I thought, “better get it out on the table.” But this is how I phrased it, “Well, you’ll never actually be able to date me.” He looked surprised, “why not?”

“Because I have a baby.”

“Oh. Well, that must be fun.” After some awkward small talk he disappeared.

I ran up to Abby. “That guy just vanished after I told him about Benjamin!” She pulled me aside and whispered, “Oh no. You can’t tell them that right away. You’ve got to wait until at least a couple of dates.” What? I was floored. She just didn’t tell them.

“They have to fall for you first,” she insisted, “and then the baby thing is just like an added bonus – and ‘oh by the way, I do all of this and I’m an amazing single mom.’ It works!”

I am skeptical of Abbey’s theory. Here’s why, if the baby thing is too much for them to handle, why find that out two dates in? And wouldn’t that be a form of dishonesty?

I’ve decided that it depends on a few factors. If you are out for a night filled with multiple encounters with men on the dance floor or behind a bar – don’t mention it. Unless one of these men grabs your attention, you end up hitting it off and you feel like there’s potential for a future date – then dish. But make sure you frame it positively. The dentist was scared off because of the way I phrased it. I made it an obstacle when it really isn’t and I made it sound like Benjamin was a hinderance.

Having a baby or a child in your life is an amazing thing. Sure it’s an obstacle to dating men who don’t care about you, but not when you’re dating men who are genuinely into you. Beware of scaring off the good ones by making it sound like a bad thing, one of my nasty little habits.

Here’s a male perspective. My single friend Dave was out recently and called me the next day after bumping into a few single moms at a bar. “We were hitting it off and then they told me they have a baby. But they made it sound like it was a horrible thing. Their bad attitude was totally unattractive and I just had to walk away.”

When I told my new boyfriend about Benjamin it was the first night we met. But I waited until the end of the night, when I knew I would want to see him again. I brought it up within the flow of conversation and had a smile on my face. “So…I have a little bit of baggage, and he weighs 22 pounds. If you want to see me again, I just thought I should get that out there..so…” I trailed off and looked down into my lap, hoping I wouldn’t see fear in his eyes. “Do you have a picture?” He looked at Benjamin on my phone and smiled, a genuine smile. “He’s a cutie. Want to play another game of pool?”

My conclusion – having a child is as big of deal as you make it. And we can’t expect a man who’s never had a child before to possibly understand on a first date or on a first encounter. That comes later. But there’s no sense in not giving him a chance to understand.

When do you tell a man you’re a single mom?

It’s been two weeks now since Benjamin’s father has seen his son.

His car is broken down because he drove it without oil. Sigh.

Coincidentally Benjamin has also been sick, sick, sick. I have missed four days of work and will be missing two more. I am also broke because I’ve had to pay for an extra two days of childcare each week.

I called him today en route to the hospital today. Benjamin had a fever of 104.5 and I thought he should know about it.

“Oh,” he says, “Well, I’m in a meeting, I’ll call you back.” CLICK.

I called him tonight to vent a bit. I know, I know. Should have let it go. He’s completely out of our lives now but when I’m missing days upon days of work and he doesn’t even seem concerned or offer to take a day off from his job I get upset.

“I understand,” he says.

“No you don’t.” I snap. “You don’t understand. How could you understand? You have never, ever had to take a day off from work to take care of your son when he’s sick.”

What he says next blew my mind.

“If we were married I would. But, my boss is not going to give me a day off to take care of my ex-wife’s kid. We are not a family anymore.”

“What?!!! He’s your son. You mean he is less of a son to you because we’re not married? Your boss can’t think that unless you think that.”

I should have hung up at this point but I  didn’t. And then he drops this bomb (not the first time).

“It was your choice to leave me,” he says, “it was your choice and now you have to deal with it.”

Was it really my choice to be a single mom? Yes, in that the idea of actually still being with him, had I stayed, makes my skin crawl. Being a single mom is tough but being with a husband like him was a hell of a lot harder. He was cold, insensitive, hurtful and down right useless.

He’s now on month 9 of a relationship with another single mother. Her son is 6 and they’re now living together. Poor her. Poor kid.

If he would have had it his way, right now he would be sitting on MY couch, drinking MY beer, eating MY groceries and treating me like shit. I just wish he weren’t on another single mom’s couch right now. I wish I could warn her.

Conclusion = It was his choice to give me no choice.

{ 7 trackbacks }

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Pundi November 9, 2007 at 12:07 pm

Let me say I hear ya…loud and clear at that. I’m going to do a video on youtube about this matter, because it’s a sickness in the black community almost like, rapping a child, and killing it’s mother all at the same time.

That’s how painful the ordeal can be to the mind and spirit.

Hang in their…Peace.

Reply

Lexi's Mom November 13, 2007 at 5:55 am

I didn’t understand the previous response or what race has to do with your situation, but let me say that I think your ex is a jerk! All this time (since I’ve been separated from my husband) I’ve envied other single moms who have some interaction/help/communication with their exes where their children are concerned. My ex walked out on us when our daughter was born. We tried reconcilation many times (him, because he supposedly felt bad and wanted his family back; me, because my old self still loved this schmuck and because I desperately wanted our child to have the benefit of both parents). After a roller coaster relationship and him leaving a few more times, I finally came to the realization that this “man” would never change and I couldn’t make him be someone he just wasn’t (a normal, decent human being with morals and compassion for his wife and kid!) So…I let go. However, I never, ever told him that he was relieved of his obligation to be a parent. As luck would have it, he stopped coming to see our daughter, stopped calling, and couldn’t care less.

I’ve been hurt, angry, and most of all disappointed that I made such a poor choice in a life partner and now my daughter has to “pay” by being neglected by her own father.

But after reading your article, I must say, I am at least fortunate that I don’t have the stress and aggravation that came with trying to deal with him. He is soooo ignorant, so selfish, and so stubborn that it’s very difficult to talk to him, much less have an adult conversation with him about parenting or anything at all concerning our daughter. But I am at peace. He has moved on and lives with a woman and you know what, I pity her. If she hasn’t seen the light yet, she will. So if your ex would prefer to help someone else with her child and neglect his own, you keep your head up and do what you have to do. Resist the urge to argue with him, and maybe, just maybe, one day he will come around. If not, know that you are the better parent, and the better person!

Reply

mssinglemama November 13, 2007 at 6:32 am

Wow, thanks so much for the encouragement. On a day when I need it more than ever. It’s now been three weeks since we’ve seen him. Yesterday he said he’d bought a used beater and would be up today. Tonight, as I’m laying here absolutely sick as a dog with a fever, he isn’t even answering his phone. I know what you mean – I would rather just not deal with him at all. I’m thinking of fighting for full custody. I know I would win. Since leaving him I have always said I would never do anything to push him away, but now that he’s pulling himself away, I just want to make the choice for him.

Thanks so much for reading! I love that this post made you feel a bit better about your situation, which sounds so hard! Us single moms are truly the bravest people I’ve ever encountered.

Reply

single mommy August 15, 2008 at 6:34 am

“It was his choice to give me no choice”

I’m going to steal this!

Reply

Ms. Single Mama August 15, 2008 at 8:43 am

Go right ahead!!! I love that one too. Another one of my stunning revelations. : )

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Penelope January 24, 2009 at 7:56 pm

I’m just going through your archives now and reading some random posts….this one really resonated with me. I hear – often – from my ex husband that it was MY choice to leave, and so I basically have to “suck up” the difficulties that I am faced with. The good news is that he’s NOT a dead-beat dad – he’s a GREAT father to his girls….just not so great as a husband.

I hate the fact that he’s soooo unwilling to take responsibility for his part in the failure of our marriage. Sure, I was the one who decided that I couldn’t do it anymore…but he had a very big hand in helping me to reach that point. I guess that some people tell themselves whatever they have to, in order to be able to sleep at night…

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Dawn January 25, 2009 at 9:30 am

Remarks of this kind are just a game I call “Drunk Thinking.”

To meet him where his mind is can be a real trick, and admit it, you don’t want to go THERE — instead, look for areas where you both agree. Agree that you chose not to stay married, and say something like, “Yes, it’s true I chose not to be married, you may be right.”

Steer clear of “Drunk Thinking” … keep your eyes on the road of mutual agreements. WARNING: may cause erections.

Reply

finsalscollons February 15, 2009 at 1:04 am

Yes, you are a single mom by choice. Not for dumping your pathetic ex (well done)but for choosing him to be the father of your child. I see responsible men being rejected every day while jerks get all the woman.

He has always been a jerk (and you have always known how he was but you wanted to delude yourself because he was exciting). So everybody reaps what he/she sows. Now accept the responsibility and move on, instead of blaming other people of your own mistakes. An adult admits his/her mistakes. A child want to blame the world for them.

Reply

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Lindsay Fuller March 30, 2010 at 12:46 pm

This is weird. Really weird. It’s as if I’m reading my life story. I just stumbled upon your blog via a RT on twitter. So far it’s amazing knowing that someone else has literally gone through what I’m going through right now. ((hugs)) for hanging in there and putting this all out there!

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Melodious June 28, 2011 at 3:54 pm

I am reading this blog for the very first time and it actually is bringing tears to my eyes.. I am really struggling with the whole single Mom, divorced, trying to find happiness thing and have felt kinda lost and alone in the way I feel. Then I find this blog, it kinda has brought peace to my mind in that I am not crazy after all.. I am normal and the feelings I have towards my ex and the raising of our children and him being a so rediculous is all part of this thing we call falling in love with the wrong guy and alllowing ourselves to have children with them. I really belived that everything was happening for a reason and maybe I would magically change him into this prince that I dreamt about when I was a lil girl.. Well on June 6th, 2011 I found out that he was not going to turn into a prince and that my dream was offically over as the judge stamped the final divorce papers. I just want to say thank you for this blog and I am excited to continue to read and feel even more encouraged.

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chris February 15, 2012 at 7:14 pm

DMS does not make sence. I dont know if i have a kid because the mother made the choice to be a single mother in my eyes. Im 26 offered to marry the girl got a job tried to form a friendly relationship with her family and she refuses to allow me to see the kid unless i take her to court. she claims i owe her 4400 in child support but she wont file the papers agianst me. (DMS) The one clue that i rely on is the fact that she admitted to me that she had slept with her ex boyfriend around the time of her conception. so now im confused im still willing to be a positive part of this kids life but i have to go to court and file all these papers and spend a large amount of money that should be spent on the kid instead of a lawyer. i read what your situation was but i did not read the rest of the forum. any advice that would be nice. but im going to continue to believe that she wants to be a single mother and i just am completely lost on what to do i cant even get her on the phone all she is worried about is money and not on my relationship with the alleged child.

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Channa June 27, 2012 at 4:14 pm

Hi!!! I didn’t plan to message you but now I’ve been sooo into your blog and every post draws me more and more in. I am currently facing a separation from my boyfriend of 8 years which whom we have a daughter in common. I decided to google “single moms blogs” no to overcome this separation because I am fed up but I was worried he will change being a good father that he is now that we are not together. This blog makes me wonder if I’m right. Will he change…

From your ex-husband comment…. “If we were married I would. But, my boss is not going to give me a day off to take care of my ex-wife’s kid. We are not a family anymore.”

Thank you for the insight!! I find you courageous!!!

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Jennifer Thuncher July 18, 2012 at 1:45 pm

oh man, i TOTALLY can relate. My ex is remarried and last winter one of our three sons had the mumps. He is 13 so was able to care for himself for the most part but still felt pretty rotten. My ex cancelled his once a week visitation with him because he didn’t want to risk carrying the virus home. Same kind of attitude. Here i was carrying for our son and then trying to work and taking time off and he wouldn’t give an hour. How does your child react? What do you say about situations like this?

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