How to Date a Single Mom, Part 6

by mssinglemama on December 21, 2008

The other night on Twitter (my new addiction) I stumbled across an interesting Tweet from a guy named Seth. Then I clicked through to his blog and felt like I’d slipped into the world of my male alter-ego. If I were a dude and childless, I think I’d be him.

I immediately asked him for a guest post on dating single moms… and just a few days later – here it is. (I love those productive types). I think you’ll love him too after reading this post, just what the doctor ordered for any single mom and the men who are lucky enough to date one of us.

And be sure to check out Seth’s blog, The Dating Papers.

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On Dating Single Moms

By Seth, author of The Dating Papers

“I’m the mother of three kids. Ages 2 through 7. They live with me,” she said over a spoonful of macadamia white chocolate ice cream.

I remember Kathleen’s exact words not for their syllables but for the look on her face as she said them. The blank look of expectation as she waited for me to voice my rejection.

“You’re kidding. I’m not ready to have a family.” She expected me to say. Most single moms expect guys to run when they mention a child. This need not be the case.

For the single childless guys:

  • Dating single moms isn’t more challenging than dating any other woman who has a major commitment in her life. You already know you don’t have any good advice for the Olympic swimmer who trains 10hrs a day. Telling a swimmer that eating more carrots will make her faster will end better for you than telling a single mom how to be a parent. Being a parent crosses everyone’s mind at some point. But nobody is asking you to be a parent just yet!
  • Most kids grow up with only one dedicated parent. The old stereotype of mom staying at home and dad going to work supports this. Get over your belief that she needs you to help her take care of the kid. She doesn’t. Her primary worry at this point is probably that she’ll end up having to take care of you as well!
  • The only advice you are allowed to give in a relationship with a single mom is the type that only involves the mom. You already have enough to worry about with getting to know this new person in your life.

For the single moms:

The percentage of guys in the world who will make you laugh on dates and moan in the bedroom hasn’t changed since you became a mom. The man of your dreams has not disappeared because you have a child. A woman with priorities and goals who takes care of herself is sexy regardless of how many kids she has! Don’t lose heart.

  • Do not base your search for a relationship on a timeline. You do not need to secure a partner before your child turns five or any other age. You are not searching for a father for your child. You are searching for somebody to make you smile!
  • Stop thinking that all the other single, childless women in the world are having great dates, amazing sex, and rewarding relationships. Most of them aren’t. However, quite a few of them are wondering if having a child would make them happier. Go figure.
  • Your hectic mommy schedule means you have little time for dating. Use this to your advantage and schedule lunch dates or late morning coffee with the new guys your seemingly deranged friends foist on you. This is a practice you should have incorporated back in the day, but now that you’re here: use it! Do use your parent status to skip out on dates. There’s no reason to feel awkward for leaving a loser “because you forgot you need to pick up your kid!”

“Kathleen” I said, slowly “you have more kindness, more humor, and are unabashedly sexier than any of the spinsters I’ve met!” She laughed and we finished our desserts amidst animated conversation. Our casual date gave her the confidence to ask out a man she’d been eyeing for months. At last news, they were fighting like an old married couple and being good for each other. In the end, it seems that if you find a person who wants to create a sustainable and rewarding relationship with you, everything else will find its place.

┬╗Stop by Seth’s blog if you get a chance.

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And my other How to Date a Single Mom posts:

How to Date a Single Mom, Part 1: The original, a very nice list on how to date a single mom.

How to Date a Single Mom, Part 2: What to tell a man dating a single mom?

How to Date a Single Mom, Part 3: Hear from a man who spent 5 days with Benjamin and I.

How to Date a Single Mom, Part 4: Take your vitamins.

How to Date a Single Mom, Part 5: How to win a single mom’s trust and her heart.

[Photo: John Boyd picture of a Couple pre- 1946 Credit: Finavon Copyright: Wikimedia Commons]

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Heidi December 21, 2008 at 2:59 pm

I love this post! It helped to clear up some of the insecurities I have about dating as a single mother!

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Sheila December 21, 2008 at 3:39 pm

Me, too! I am so impressed with Seth. That was great – thank you for sharing!

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Snarky Lady December 21, 2008 at 7:35 pm

Kind of wish I’d had this to go on a few years ago. I think it would have really helped me make some better choices.

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Seth Simonds December 21, 2008 at 8:23 pm

Heidi & Sheila: I’m glad you enjoyed it! Don’t be impressed. I’ve just discovered that single moms can be some of the most attractive and pulled-together ladies in the world!

Snarky Lady: What a great handle! Lowers expectations for non-sarcastic conversations! =) I’m glad, even if it’s not useful now, that you can see some use. It’s always great to hear that I’m on the right track.

Thanks for reading and supporting Ms. Single Mama. If I’m her alter-ego, she’s quite the narcissist because I think she’s a truly amazing lady!

Seth

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julie December 22, 2008 at 9:46 am

Great guest post! I think Seth hit the nail on the head with his lists. Of course, I didn’t even realize I felt that way about a couple of those things until I read them… guess I haven’t had time to stop and think about it.

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T December 22, 2008 at 10:50 am

Oh wow! That’s all wonderful stuff there! Its SOOOO good to get a man’s perspective on this subject. Thank you Alaina for seeking him out. And thank you Seth for being a class act!

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bobby December 23, 2008 at 4:53 pm

I just skimmed through this article, and I’ll tell you why.

I have dated two woman who had children. My experience with these two ladies and their children were very good. I understand that some men have issues about dating single Moms and that’s their thing. Maybe they want a child to carry on his their name (a biological child). Maybe they have issues with raising another mans child. I hold no judgment to them.

Children are children and they need love and support from loving parent/s. I was raised by a single Mom who endured ridicules hardship in the process. I know the perspective of what a lady may have to endure as a single parent.

As to single Moms, they are some of the most extremely loving, responsible and amazing woman! They have so much to offer the lucky guy who happens to come into her life.

I have always been amazed at the stigma that some have about single Moms. I would highly recommend to any man to date a single Mom as they don’t know what they’re missing.

My opinion can not be changed about this and that’s why I just skimmed through the post. Sorry, I normally read posts fully.

Cheers!

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Seth Simonds December 23, 2008 at 10:47 pm

Julie&T: I’m so glad you liked the post! Even more, it’s really great to see that Alaina has such fantastic readers who engage with what she’s sharing and take time to comment. She’s doing a wonderful and needed thing here and I’m delighted that she allowed me to be a little part of it!

Hi Bobby! I highly recommend you take a few moments to read the post through. Your response indicates that you didn’t make it much past the first few lines. I think you’d find a lot more to identify with and agree with if you continue on for a bit!

I would hope that not a single one of us would try to change your opinion on dating single moms. We’re glad you’re such a fan!

Seth

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bobby December 24, 2008 at 2:56 pm

Hi Seth,
Yeah, that’s why I said sorry beforehand. I just have always been a little sensitive about topics like these and have never had patients with the ignorance too many guys have when it comes to single Moms.

I usually read the meat of each paragraph, kind of like speed reading, and actually get a fairly good read on the whole story. But, you’re right, it was much more pleasurable reading the whole thing slowly.

You did a bang up job Seth, my hat’s off to you!

I actually linked this blog on my blog because it is packed with great information for those who may be interested in dating a single Mom, and even for those who wouldn’t be.

Thanks for guiding me back to re-read this again properly :)

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Leonard December 28, 2008 at 4:43 pm

Hi Seth,
A little to late for me. I have lost someone I love very much and probably for reasons you have advised against doing. I liked your blog very much and will keep the things you said in mind for the next time.

Thanks

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mssinglemama December 29, 2008 at 7:50 pm

Love reading all of these great comments from men on my blog!

Just had to say that…

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Jake January 29, 2009 at 5:34 pm

It’s refreshing to read the guest post. I started dating a single mother with a small child three months ago, and was hoping that someone else out there shared my views (I don’t know any other single mothers, much less a guy who is dating one). The thoughts in this article are articulated very well.

I am still very new to this, and want to apply the deserved care. The bottom line, though, is that she is a normal woman who is dating like anyone else. In addition to that, she is the most considerate, honest, and understanding woman I have ever been involved with. I know it’s not easy for her to do, and I am lucky to have such an amazing woman in my life.

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Heath February 12, 2009 at 6:51 pm

It all comes down to personal choice of the particular person and any generalisation would not be fair.

Discrete dating site for those married , or in a relationship,
and looking for someone married or in a relationship.
http://www.marriedandlooking.co.uk

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singlemomdater February 19, 2009 at 10:29 pm

You are not searching for a father for your child. You are searching for somebody to make you smile!

#1. If you search for somebody to date and make you smile, you will have scores of men interested. So if it is so, don't worry.

#2. But if you want somebody to help raise your children and who contributes financially and with work to this task, this will be much harder.

My experience dating single moms is that some of them want #1 and some of them want #2. Some of them tell you that they want #1 but what they really want is #2.

As an example of single mom who wants #2 and says it with honesty is Lory Gottlieb http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200803/single-marr

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jennifer vierstraete June 23, 2009 at 5:02 pm

Though as a single mom we come with some important guidelines and boundaries for the greater good of our families… I do have to say, that putting flowers on my doorstep would be more than welcomed and what a great thing for my son to see! ROMANCE! You have to admit ladies that we need more men that are willing to get a little crazy for us and what a great thing for my son to look up to and aspire to be…. a lover who is not afraid to show it!! Our lives are so filled with rules and guidelines and LOGIC.. these are all great things…. but I have seen that some of the greatest acts of love had nothing to do with logic…

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mssinglemama June 23, 2009 at 5:05 pm

This is a beautiful comment. Thank you SO much for sharing.

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jenny vierstraete June 23, 2009 at 5:10 pm

Thank you Seth for your post! Its been so encouraging to know that as I grow as a person, a mother and continue to take all my disappointments and learn and grow from them that I am desirable to the right kind of man… that the things (single and parenting) that the world may view as a sore on society, is in fact one of the most enduring things about me!! This puts some wind in my sails to continue on being beautiful, broken and blessed the entire way!!!

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Amanda February 3, 2010 at 5:51 am

Thanks for the words. They are very encouraging. I just wish there were more men out their that understood this concept instead of being rude, disrespectful and immature!! Seriously, I wish men would read this.

I almost feel like a teacher assigning proper read homework before dating a single mom.

I do say that I am too a flower girl. I feel that leaving flowers and little love notes is something I would like. It shows you are thoughtful, caring and kind. It would also show my son how a man should treat a woman right. Little boys need proper male role models

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