A Man Moratorium

by mssinglemama on January 13, 2011

Something odd is happening.

This break up is like none I have ever experienced before.

I am sad. Sure. But I’m not broken. In the past I felt ripped apart, wide open and I wanted to fill it–as quickly as possible–with someone or something else. But not this time.

And here’s the really weird part, I have no interest in dating or even thinking about other men. Correction. I have no interest in dating or even thinking about a relationship with another man.

If you thought I was jaded before… well, I’m afraid I am now doubly so. Although “jaded” may not be the right term. How about even more independent than I was before? Even less interested in bringing a man into this party? Ever. Again.

I know. I know.

It’s still early. Nearly one month now – can you believe that?

Is this normal? Am I supposed to feel relieved? Like John and I narrowly missed a miserable marriage and that I narrowly missed a second divorce?

And my mother, in addition to several of my friends, have decided that I am now on a man moratorium. They are cutting me off. Enough is enough. I have lost my relationship card after one too many complete oversights in the love department.

How long do you think my moratorium should last? I’m all for it… but I like goals and sticking to commitments. So tell me–how long? One more month? Two? Six? One year? Or how about this? I will go on a man moratorium until I meet someone worth breaking it for. But – that may not work, because that relies on my judgment, which is out of whack.

Sigh.

I think clearly, the moratorium will remain in full effect indefinitely.

No related posts.

{ 65 comments… read them below or add one }

mommietopearl January 13, 2011 at 10:31 pm

You’ll know when its time…. Thats all I can say.

I went on a long “moratorium” like you describe nearly 3 years ago, for almost 2 years to the date. And the one worth breaking it for broke his way through years and years of walls which I never thought could be broken down by anyone at all. I saw myself as so far damaged, he saw beauty and grace.

Time will tell. Best of luck

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Denny DelVecchio January 13, 2011 at 10:33 pm

It would last until you met Denny DelVecchio.

Until that day, keep your chin up. Most guys are dogs, but there are actually a lot of worthy bros out there who will respect you, treat you right and make you laugh.

Said another way, don’t set a time off period. Live your life your way and see what happens.

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Bridgette January 14, 2011 at 10:01 am

LOL to Denny – but I agree with him. :)

Live. Don’t search. Don’t think about men. Surprisingly, thats when they find you. Men are attracted to confidence and women who don’t need them. Don’t need one – and they’ll follow. The right ones.

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Andrea January 14, 2011 at 2:38 pm

I agree with Denny too! Don’t set a limit frame, just live and see where it goes and what happens with life. Take care of Ben, take care of you! And that means take time for just you, do things for yourself that are guilty pleasures and just enjoy life to the fullest. When the time is right it will happen.

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Glenda January 14, 2011 at 3:57 pm

live it. love it. welcome it. the journey of LIFE! you will know when the time is right. don’t give up on LOVE.

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JC January 13, 2011 at 10:35 pm

I once took a 6 month moratorium from sex and dating. Best thing I ever did. Definitely put things more into focus which is strange because I certainly wasn’t even thinking about men or relationships at that time. It was a complete break from it all (following a bad breakup) and I thoroughly enjoyed myself and my time with my son. When the time was up I was approaching things in a much more healthy manner. What is this man bringing to my life instead of what’s missing?

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Ricci January 13, 2011 at 10:43 pm

I did it for a while. My mom did it for 13 years. She got her Associates, B.A., and M.A. before she met him and got married. I haven’t met him, but doing lets you see what you truly want, and what signs to look for. I’m more clear now then I was when I was married, real talk.

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Dawn January 13, 2011 at 10:50 pm

Stick to your ideals. Raise a boy into a man that does not get hooked into the masculine culture. The most creative project of this time.

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Cat January 13, 2011 at 10:54 pm

I did 2 years, but I was 4 months pregnant when things happened so it wasn’t hard to avoid. I started a version of speed dating when my son was 18 months old, but didn’t get into a relationship until I met someone worth it about 2 months (and 5? 7?) guys later. Sow some oats and be by yourself.

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Erin January 14, 2011 at 12:20 am

I just recently had a quiet moratorium, and focused on ME ME ME. I ate what I wanted to, wore my craziest, favorite outfits and didn’t even go to the gym. GASP. A friend even tried to set me up on a date, and I flatly refused. Met the guy anyway through a group of friends, and now because of my moratorium, I feel like I can now make better decisions as to who I want to date, and IF I want to date them, or keep dating them. Best time in my life. This super gorgeous, super wonderful, God-loving guy is following me around and waiting for my every move, and I’m perfectly happy with going super slow and not reaching out to fill a void. That is when I know I’ve finally grown into myself enough to wait for the real deal, not just a warm body.

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Loops January 14, 2011 at 5:42 am

Hi from the UK. I have been on a man moratorium for almost a year. I didn’t conciously decide to avoid men, as such, but realised after I split from my ex that I just wasn’t interested in getting involved with anyone. My son is 14 years old now and it’s an odd age to start introducing new men. There is no ‘dating’ culture in the UK like there is in the US. People tend to start out with serious intentions rather than seeing a date as a casual experience.

The truth is that for now, myself and my son are perfectly ok without a man around

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Momma Sunshine January 14, 2011 at 5:44 am

It’s difficult to place a time limit on this kind of thing. But just offhand, I would say AT LEAST six months. Six months to grieve the loss of what you wanted, to figure out what you DO want and to create some stability for both you and Benjamin. Take your time. There’s no point in rushing into anything right now.

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Layla January 14, 2011 at 7:26 am

I am in the same boat. Single mom to an almost 4 year old amazing son. I just broke it off with my first serious relationship since my divorce. I am setting the goal of at least 1 entire year without dating. Not even a dinner date. I’m putting the kabosh on men. I completely relate to what you are experiencing. I have no desire right now to have a man in my life.

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lmt January 14, 2011 at 7:46 am

One or two moths definitely does not sound long enough. at all Of course you always hear stories of how someone met the man of their dreams two days after a horrible break up but that is not the norm. You may feel jaded but you are also probably more vulnerable than you think (i have always thought from reading your blog that you more vulnerable and less tough than you portray–in a good way). Maybe you are not completely torn open because it was a healthy relationship–just not one meant for the long run. Try not to draw to many conclusions about the what you want for the rest of your life right now (man no man etc…). You are probably still in flux, emotionally Give yourself a brek and don’t expect too much of yourself too soon.

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Lisa of Lisa's Yarns January 14, 2011 at 9:15 am

I am not a single mom, so our lives are very different, but I can relate to how you feel. I am just so done with dating. I just went through a break up the week of Christmas and I have bounced back remarkably well this time around. But I have ZERO interest in meeting someone.

I’m personally going to take 6 months off. I need to recharge my battery and get to the point where I can be excited about meeting someone. I def far from the point of being excited to meet someone…

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Kim January 14, 2011 at 9:20 am

I have been on one for a year now. After a 10 year horrible marriage that finally ended thank GOD and also a some what bad relationship prior to the bad marriage – I have sworn off men for a while. Its been a year – I am raising my 3 boys 12, 5, and 4 by myself and I could not be happier. Yes, I get lonely but not lonely enough to try again anytime soon!!

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Lori January 14, 2011 at 9:45 am

I haven’t commented since you broke the news to us. So first, I’d like to say I’m sorry that things didn’t go like you had hoped they would. But in response to you saying your judgement is out of whack- not buyin’ it. He asked you to forget he said anything and you had the ovaries to say- NO something isn’t right here. I’m not forgetting you said it. When we all know that the easiest thing would have been to accept it. To believe it and forget it.
To hell with any moratorium. If you meet someone who you think you’d like to know more of- then do it. If you decide you were wrong and didn’t need to know the person- then stop.
You have a thriving business, a recognized and much read blog, a wonderful little man, a house…. and fabulous judgement. Do not doubt yourself.

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Janet January 14, 2011 at 10:32 am

My first and only relationship since my divorce ended abruptly. After courting me eagerly for 1 year I finally decided it was okay to trust again only to have him just walk away without any explanation from me and my 5 year old daughter who adored him. He was the only father figure she has known. He has broken every promise he made to us. It was very painful but I know best for us in the long run. Unfortunately the worst part is it has shaken my confidence in my ability to judge people. Loving again was never the hurdle, trusting again was and now is a bigger hurdle than ever. Like you right now I have no interest in taking that leap of faith with another man. I have to believe that eventually I will forgive myself for bad judgement.

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Star January 14, 2011 at 11:03 am

I say…no dating moratorium…just date your guy and girlfriends instead :) Some of the most fun I ever had was going on “dates” with my friends. I didn’t get that sad feeling looking around and everyone has someone but me or everyone is out on a date but me…we did all the things you’d do with a significant other but with each other instead. SO MUCH FUN! Make date time every week and make a date with a friend. It’s so important to be allowed to be the you that happens without work or kids. The “date” you. Get dolled up, spend some money, eat fancy food, visit a museum, go somewhere romantic, have a romantic getaway. Just minus the making out ;) Have fun!!!!!!!
Love, Star

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Shae January 14, 2011 at 11:16 am

My friends and I call it the “Man Free Month.” MFM for short! Of course as soon as one friend declared her MFM, days later she met the man of her dreams. They have been together for about 5 years now & are in one of the most healthy, loving relationships I have ever had the pleasure to witness. However, I think it should last however long you need it to. Her situation is completely different than yours and these things should be tweaked to fit the user. I personally have been on a MFM, on repeat, for a very long time. I’m not adverse to dating but the person has to be worth my effort. I will not waste my precious time and will not settle. Loneliness creeps in from time to time, but frankly I love my single life, warts and all. It should be noted I am one of your readers who is not a single mom, just a single :) Best of luck to you and Benjamin.

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Joelle January 14, 2011 at 11:56 am

Remember in the Sex and the City movie when Carrie asked when she would laugh again? And Miranda said…when something is really funny. I think it’s parallel for how long you will wait. I think your moratorium should last until you meet someone worth going on a date with. Worth getting into a relationship with and you will know when the time is right. whether its a 2 days, a week, or a few months. But i think the worst thing that could happen to you is to become jaded, because then it’s as if you never learned anything, and that would be ashame! And your judgement may be out of whack, but i think next time you will take things a lot slower, but you shouldn’t feel that you are in some sort of pergatory from having fun on a date or meeting men! Just my 2 cents.
Also, I’ve had a question for a little while…were you ever upset with your sister for grilling John Bear at that party? and what signs did she see (that you couldn’t) about John Bear? Just have been curious about that since you announced it a few weeks ago.

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Jim Brochowski January 14, 2011 at 1:21 pm

I jumped over here from my reader to say I thought you were over thinking it. The folks who are telling you to “just live,” are saying it better than I ever could. Relationships that are “right” just happen. There is no forced. There are no rules. Do what you do. It will all work out.

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Kelli January 14, 2011 at 2:23 pm

Ok, so I realize this might make me sound like a crazy hermit, but I haven’t dated anyone since I found out I was pregnant. My daughter is 4 now, so it’s been over 4 years (obviously). People ask me all the time if I’m planning on getting out there-I’m very social and my daughter and I are out and about all the time. Dating is just not a priority for me. I’m not closed off to it, but I don’t dwell on it either. For me, I figure I only have a couple more years when my daughter will want to be around me all the time. And once she starts hanging out at friend’s houses and having her own hobbies and all that, there will be more space in my head to think about a relationship.

If you make a Man Moratoriumm you’re going to be thinking about your man-free life a lot more than is healthy-which, would actually be counterproductive, right?

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Misty January 14, 2011 at 2:38 pm

I’ve gone on them before.I’ve had 3 serious relationships and taken about a year between them. But you will find what works best for you:) If i didn’t live in GA i would totally talk to bradley’s pimp about him haha. take care and something i like to keep in mind is that our troubles and lessons learned are not something to “get over” but burdens that we learn to carry. At times it seems like to much to carry but with more time you will grow stronger and before you know it that weight will not weigh you done but will just be a part of you.

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Annnan January 14, 2011 at 2:55 pm

A Man Moratorium? Why? John Bear wasn’t a bad man; in fact, he appeared from your blog both during your relationship and after your relationship to be a really decent kinda guy. Just not the guy for you. I think you should be kissing the ground — not because he left, but because he had the courage to leave and not put you through another divorce. You said yourself, after the fact, that you knew things weren’t right between you but you blocked them out and moved forward instead of trusting your instincts. So I for one applaud John Bear for making the decision to move out of his relationship and set you free! He did you a favor ultimately. It appears that John Bear “manned up” and handled the situation appropriately. Breaking up is a hard thing to do no matter what — toss in a new house and a child, along with your own adult relationship and I’m guessing John spent some pretty tough moments thinking things through. You have both acted with grace and dignity and I hope you’re able to remain friends, good friends, because it will be beneficial to both you and Mr. Benjamin in the long run.

I agree with Jim Brochowski — don’t over think things right now — especially when your views on men and relationships are a bit skewed. Try not to make this about men because its not about men; if it was about men, John Bear would be a total asshole in your eyes and clearly that isn’t the case. This is about ONE relationship that was GOOD for a very long time. Give yourself a little credit. John Bear too.

You’re a smart, attractive woman. You’ll find your Prince Charming one day. Maybe not today or tomorrow, but you’ll find him — and probably when you least expect it. AND you’ll KNOW — there will be absolutely no doubts, no tiny feelings that you push to the side. Until then, enjoy men — dating or otherwise. Keep your eyes and heart open and be willing to let another relationship grow and develop. You don’t have to marry anybody, but you should remember the good times you, John and Benjamin made because doing otherwise will diminish what you two had together, and possibly sour your idea about other relationships.

Good luck!!

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Glenda January 14, 2011 at 4:19 pm

wow… beautiful said!

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Gingermamabee January 14, 2011 at 3:04 pm

I can relate to the feeling of no interest in a relationship. I have a 22-month old boy, and I’ve been parenting solo all along. It’s so busy and engrossing being a mama and working that the idea of a relationship seems completely irrelevant. I can’t imagine having the time or emotional reserve unless, of course, it was someone unavoidably and unmistakably wonderful, who would add to our lives. There are many aspects of being a single mom that are liberating. I don’t think we need to hinge happiness on romantic love, love yes, but not necessarily romantic love. But if the big, warm kind came our way, it would be a lovely addition to our days.

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Kelli January 14, 2011 at 4:29 pm

LOVE how you phrased your comment-”It’s so busy and engrossing being a mama and working that the idea of a relationship seems completely irrelevant. I can’t imagine having the time or emotional reserve unless, of course, it was someone unavoidably and unmistakably wonderful, who would add to our lives.”

I feel the exact same way.

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christine January 16, 2011 at 6:02 pm

yes. same. here. between work and my two girls (2 and 4.5) i don’t know when i’d actually have the TIME to date. i’d like to meet someone…i’m not looking to get married again, or even live with someone ever again, but there are somethings that might be nice…*ahem* however, my girls don’t even have overnights with their dad, and my time with them feels so limited as it is, i think i’d feel terribly guilty trying to make time for another relationship. i tell myself when they are older, in school and such (which is really not so far away) i’ll have more time to think about men again.

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LK January 14, 2011 at 3:13 pm

It’s time when your heart and your soul stop hurting. It took me 3 years after my ex fiance and I broke up. It was incredibly hard but I also learned a lot and became stronger (as cliche as that sounds).

Now I’m married 8 years, with a 2 year old. If anyone ever said this would have been my life I would have said no way.

But it’s better for it.

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mommybella January 14, 2011 at 3:56 pm

Its been three and a half years for me and I can honestly say I’m doing pretty good. I have my moments when I’m really lonely and missing a husband figure, but it always passes. I love being able to just do what ever I want. My son and I can do anything and go anywhere without having to answer to anyone or checking in. Or in the case of my last relationship, I never have to worry about a partner accusing me of sneaking off or of lying. I feel free.

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Jessica January 14, 2011 at 3:56 pm

Dude, you two JUST broke up last month. I’m sorry, but if you actually hooked up with someone right now, I think that I would stop reading this blog. Hoochie mama central. Your son is confused enough…a month ago, you were just about to get MARRIED…and now you’re thinking about who you’re going to hook up with next? Good God, woman, take a breather and don’t leach on to anyone else for a minute. Can we say rebound? Geez…

Glad you got out, John Bear, while the getting was good.

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Lea January 14, 2011 at 4:51 pm

Are you serious with that comment? She isn’t talking about getting another man. She’s simply voicing some of the thoughts and emotions that are running through her right now.

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Chris January 14, 2011 at 7:18 pm

I think you SHOULD stop reading this blog.

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eb January 14, 2011 at 5:16 pm

i am on a man break as we speak! i was just telling a friend today that i have been hesitant to date since my divorce (only been on a few and they were not worth going) because i too made mistakes and i need to get completely emotionally healthy before i do (which i have NOT had a chance to do raising this beautiful girl and being back in school). i have BIG dreams for us. i’m completing nursing school and after that… the moon and the stars! it feels good for it to just be us. stability is better guaranteed when it’s just us. i never imagined my break from men would last 3+ years but i’m glad about it. i think in a few years i may want to date? but then i can picuture it just being us for a while and then i’ll take a lover on when she goes off to college. ;-) for now i’m enjoying the freedom.

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Becky January 14, 2011 at 9:42 pm

I always hear people say they are taking “breaks” from dating, or establishing rules. My take on it is that you shouldn’t give yourself 1 day, 2 months, 3 years, etc. It should just be an time that you use to get yourself back on track and focus on you and Benjamin. Maybe you can make it a point to not be out actively looking for dates but if a guy comes along and wants to go out once or twice, I don’t see the harm. You only live once and you may miss out on the next Mr. Right if its week two of a one month swearing off of men. Just my .02. You’ll make it through! You are a very strong independent woman! Best of luck and wishes to you and B :)

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soon2bsinglemom January 17, 2011 at 10:31 am

I think this is really good advice! Having been divorced for exactly 4 weeks today (hoorah!), I’ve been wondering how long I should wait too. On one hand…I want to be single because I was married for 6 years, together for a total of 11 – I think I should take a break. On the other hand, I might miss an opportunity with a really great man if I swear off dating for a year.

I think that not actively looking for a guy is a great idea but if one worthy enough of going on a date comes your way, then say yes. However, I always say that looking for a FWB is a completely different thing… That’s all I personally need right now. ;)

Hope you and Benjamin are doing well.

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Deb January 14, 2011 at 11:56 pm

I have held off commenting on this subject until now. Right up until nearly the day you announced you and John Bear were breaking up, you convinced us that he was the man of your dreams. And since, while you haven’t exactly bashed him, you haven’t been overly complimentary of him either. I wonder if he had a blog, what he might be saying about you. I, for one, think John Bear had all the best intentions and did nothing wrong and nearly everything right. He fell in love with a beautiful, strong woman (and her wonderful son). For the most part, I’m sure it was everything he ever wanted. But, at some point (how can we figure these things out) you both realized that it wasn’t to be. Thank God it happened when it did. No one needs to beat themselves up and no one needs to beat themselves up either.

As for a man moratorium, how absurdly foolish. Are you kidding me? Just because John ended up not being the man of your dreams, you are going to give up on men for a week, a month, six months or a year. Oh, please dear, spare us the dramatics. Grow up and understand that life is to be lived and then for God’s sake, live it. Fall in love tomorrow at the supermarket, or at the gym or at DSW for Christ’s sake. (It doesn’t mean you have to expose Benjamin to it – yes, you need to protect him), but it your heart isn’t big enough to take it by now without all the dramatics of writing about a ‘man moratorium’ by now, than you must be into your own blog for it’s own theatrical purposes.

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Anna January 16, 2011 at 10:52 am

Why do you have to be so negative and hurtful? If she had all the answers, she wouldn’t be human, as clearly, you aren’t.

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amy January 17, 2011 at 12:45 am

“Grow up and understand that life is to be lived and then for God’s sake, live it. Fall in love tomorrow at the supermarket, or at the gym or at DSW for Christ’s sake. ”

Yeah ok, let’s all talk about being dramatic and all that.. (Bitchy comment, did it make you feel GOOD to type it? Did it? Cow~!). Yes, let’s all just finish off a committed relationship and then meet the love of our life at the grocery store within days!!! And if she doesn’t? Does that make her feel better? NO! It takes time to move on so keep your snotty comments to yourself.

Personally coming from a break up as you have I would just concentrate on what is vital and important and let the rest follow. No time lines, no barriers, just living your life as honestly as you can :)

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Becky January 15, 2011 at 11:37 am

You and me both sistah. I just can’t even imagine going through the rigamaroll of dating again. Ugh. I am just fine, me and my daughters. A man is just going to screw that up.

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Dawn January 15, 2011 at 9:57 pm

Life is like a piano. The white keys represent happiness, the black keys represent sadness. As life goes on you begin to realize the black keys make music too.

I really can’t see that there are any loses in living and experiencing life fully how ever we choose to. There is just life. We are not here to define or give permission to anyone other than our own self. We are our own and we can decide what works and what doesn’t.

There are no rules. Imagine that.

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Lesli January 15, 2011 at 11:01 pm

I wish I had the following that you have….so many of us single moms are putting ourselves out there all the time only to have our hearts broken again and again with only one or two girlfriends to throw that support and kind words behind us.

That’s me today….a planned weekend out of town with a new interest only for him to TEXT me this morning to tell me he changed his mind and our weekend was cancelled. And to add to the angst, my ex-boyfriend of three years that SWORE he would never remarry, got married today. Sigh. Karma sucks….and I’m pretty sure I’ve paid my full share.

Hang in there….I wish you the very best as always. : )

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Anna January 16, 2011 at 10:57 am

MSM, I think you are in a pretty good spot. It shows how much more healthy this relationship is that it isn’t the end of the world this time. Trust yourself. John was good, just not good enough. There will be a next time, but only if you want there to be, and when you want there to be. If you don’t want to think about dating, then don’t… until you do. I can understand wanting to put a time period on it — some of us need guidelines and deadlines, but I wouldn’t.

2 years ago I was done with dating because the guys I met weren’t good enough. It was liberating to realize that. And then last NYE, a friend turned into something more, and here we are in a loving, committed, long-term relationship — wasn’t looking for it, but thank God I was open to the opportunity.

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Elizabeth January 16, 2011 at 11:01 am

This post reminds me of a great song by Alanis Morissette

http://www.metrolyrics.com/moratorium-lyrics-alanis-morissette.html

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Sarah January 16, 2011 at 11:34 am

No man moratorium necessary. . .
This is NOT all about your poor judgement. What about a man’s poor judgement in not recognizing “the party” he has been invited to and embracing that despite the drama. . . because I don’t care what anyone says, there is always drama in some form or another.
My son is 6 now and I have declared numerous man moratoriums over the years and chastised myself for bad judgement . . . but NO MORE.
I suspect that you and Benjamin are probably dynamic and exuberant (and a whole lot of other adjectives) just like my son and I . . . it will take a special man to embrace us fully . . . but in the meantime for 2011 I declared that I would STOP WAITING – stop waiting for what’s next (with men or anything in life really) and embrace what I have.
Our little boys are amazing and so are we . . . we are lucky!

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Bavani January 17, 2011 at 12:27 am

I’m sorry you had to go through this loss again.

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EES January 17, 2011 at 2:31 am

The urge for a “man moratorium” is really your soul/spirit saying that you need to take some time for you and your son. I don’t think you need a time limit, I think you need to continue to verbalize that you aren’t feeling up to male interaction for now and that is ok. When you are ready, it will be apparent. Being in our emotions without dwelling is a life skill.
I don’t know why people on here choose to be judgmental??

I’ve been a single mom for 6 years and have to say that its just a constant process of evaluating, and re-evaluating. This year I’ve learned to have more fun and that is truly what I recommend to balance all the responsibility we shoulder!

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Deanna Gale January 17, 2011 at 10:09 pm

If you want any encouragement whatsoever that the man of your dreams awaits to whisk you away after ANY period of time, sadly I don’t have that advice. I am your jaded single mom online friend who just wrote a blog entry about giving up dating entirely and advertised it to all of my friends, including one guy who probably thinks he *was* dating me :)

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mel January 17, 2011 at 10:29 pm

Take things one day at a time and focus on enjoying life. Take pleasure in the little things. Living life as a single mother is challenging enough. That’s why I suggest you just take things one day at a time and focus your energies in positive things for you and Benjamin. Focus on yourself and your family – meaning you and your little man.

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DharmaMama January 17, 2011 at 11:30 pm

I did a year man moratorium, and it was hands-down the best thing I ever did for myself. Ever. In 35 years.

I did not even put myself in a situation where I’d be alone with a guy, and be tempted to rekindle some kind of fire. Anyway, I actually attracted practically no one during that time, because I think I just had such a total hands-off vibe. Now that I am back in the fray 13 months later, I feel like I am coming at it from a whole different place. It was been remarkably liberating. I feel I’ve gotten my dignity back.

I wish that you may find the freedom and stability that I found from my moratorium – which I called “The Year of Loving Myself Passionately.” :)

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Tinderbox January 19, 2011 at 4:45 pm

Just throwing this out there, but how about not until your son is grown up and out of the house? That way he gets your full attention rather than less than your full attention in what is already a broken home.

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Lisa January 20, 2011 at 3:10 pm

Following the advice of my very own Carrie Bradshaw, I’ve decided to enter into an exclusive, committed relationship WITH MYSELF! Apparently this means I will not do anything with a man that I would feel uncomfortable doing were I in a committed relationship with another, and instead I will devote all that nurturing and attention to myself. For how long? Til June. Because … well, summer was meant for playing. ;)

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Kim January 20, 2011 at 4:14 pm

My sisters have placed me on the man moratorium as well…but I’m dating-some, however I don’t really have the “desire” to, it’s not the crazy “need” to date I had before having my kids – and I am SO thankful for that! Now that I’m single at 39 with a 3 and 5 yo – I’ve never had such inner peace in my life! Who would’ve thought…I think our priorities as single mother’s is so different than that of the single daddy’s – must be a “mommy” thing. I will not settle for anything less than a confident, loving man who loves me as the strong, confident, single mommy that I am – and my kids too…if he’s not out there – single I will stay – and happy!

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Hanna January 20, 2011 at 5:05 pm

Wow welcome back to the single mom world! I’ve been toying with the dating scene and gone on a few dates, but I really like being single. It used to be 90% of the time, but now its dropped to about 85%. Which isn’t really bad :)

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kasia January 21, 2011 at 3:12 am

@Tinderbox:
Thank you for your thoughts. I can see why you might say what you did however, I think you are missing some valuable and important pieces of information to your idea.

Here is what I think you perhaps have not considered:

1) Benjamin is not at all in a “broken home.” He has a VERY OBVIOUSLY loving and committed mom. Broken homes are homes that fight, have no love, and are generally ugly places to be in. Ms. Single Mama is a cultivator of love and accepts no less in her home. Benjamin is not being raised in a broken home at all, he is being raised in the home of which the matriarch is an intelligent and compassionate woman who manages to have a strong career and income building capacity, as well as having a strong sense of self and strong sense of humanity and altruism (of which this site is an example of- this site is a beacon for so many single moms, and the writer of this site is a brave woman to keep it going).

2) If she were to wait until Benjamin is out of the house to pursue an adult loving and sexual relationship she would likely turn into a terrible mother because her personal needs as a human being would not be met. She would end up sacrificing herself to please another which generally never results in anything positive. She would possibly live an uninspired life and not be a role model for living; truly living; which involves following your heart.

3) For her to truly give her full attention to ANYONE (including her clients and Benjamin) requires her to have some satisfaction and happiness in her own personhood, which is connected to but also SEPARATE from her role of Mom To en. For her to truly be able to give her full attention to Benjamin she needs to have satisfaction in her life, and that MIGHT (not necessarily, but MIGHT) involve her having a loving partner in her life.

@ ms single mama- I’ve been a long time reader but not much of a commenter until now- your break up with John Bear shook me. I am a single mama, (though recently engaged) and have had a very active dating and love live.

Your blog is important as a cultural reference point and sparks many minds. Thank you for the personal sacrifices you make every day to continue remaining open to us strangers of the internet.

You are a healer.

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mssinglemama January 24, 2011 at 9:00 pm

Thank you, Kasia. What a beautiful comment, just what I needed to read after some of the other comments.

Why single moms are so easily judged, I will never understand.

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happygirl January 27, 2011 at 9:39 am

Also thanking you kasia. How marvelous was your first comment. As one mom who for five years has felt the guilt of having a broken home (even though he was cheating on me from the time I was pregnant and then left), I have found it absolutely freeing. I have nothing but pride for how well I have brought up my child and how much I do for her.

To Ben’s mom – isn’t it interesting how so many women need to “recharge” themselves after a relationship? You don’t really hear that from men. The fact is, men, even the good ones, take a lot out of us. The lucky women are those that can manage to continually emotionally support a relationship with a man and give fully to their children and a profession. I however, am not one of them. I went over five years without any attempt (and foregoing others trying!) to get a man in my life, basically focusing on my child, my career, my life. At first I didn’t know how I would survive from month to month, but now I have everything in my life that I want, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything – including a man. I am so glad to have myself to show my daughter. And, when I finally decided I wanted to date – bam! there’s no lack, that’s for sure! Men will always be there, because they need us way more than we need them. However, these precious years with your youngster will fly by. The memories of being a mom to your precious boy will be the things you remember as you pass beyond this life. The men? Probably not. ;)
So – don’t worry about a specific moratorium. My advice? Just put Ben first, you second, your career third, your family and friends fourth (maybe swap the last two?). If you find a guy that realizes he last in line….go for it! :)

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JJ January 21, 2011 at 4:32 pm

I just heard the term ‘Man-cation”. I think a little man-cation is perfect right now. Clear out what ever may be hurting you in your heart so that once your man-cation you have room for new love to bloom. BTW reading Debbie Fords Spiritual Divorce right now – really amazing book. I would highly recommend it as great reading on your man-cation.

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Susan Goodman January 22, 2011 at 1:40 pm

These comments are tremendous and I am sure it is comforting to see others in similiar places in their lives. I, too have just been relieved from a ten year blank, dead, undernourished, and uninspired relationship tarnished by addictive and controlling behaviors (his). I now feel a freedom I never had. I am free from his limits and restrictions and most of all – negative energy. I think each person in your life helps you to learn more about yourself and what you really need. The next one might be it or it may be the next step to the right one. How do you ever know he’s the right one?? I don’t know that answer but you do have to trust your instincts. I know I may have to inflict emotional pain on someone to get what I need and that sometimes has to happen. I love where I am and have two happy, healthy children who are going to be ok with just me as their mother. You are doing great and I agree with the moratorium thing. I know I don’t trust myself right now either to make a correct decision. . .I will know when he comes along. . . I also want to say. . . what was he thinking?????

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Shawn Diego January 22, 2011 at 7:14 pm

I’ve never been in a position in my life where I felt so strongly for a person as this single mother that I have been dating for about 6 months now. She is the best woman I have ever met and I want to be there for her no matter what. She is now worried so much about her kids upbringing due to her ex husbands recent immaturity (dui , hit and run, and other stuff) and recklessness that she is ending our relationship. She is taking full custody of her children and fears the repercussions of us being together will negatively impact her beautiful children. She also fears that she will not be able to give me what I need in a relationship because of time constraints. I have never met her children because she guards them from me in her life. She feels that it will cause attachment issues and they will act out and be hard to deal with. She tells me that she loves me and wishes things could be different but she is instead breaking up with me because her children are her #1 priority. I understood this when I met her, but never imagined that it would go down like this. I have never experienced such a horrible helpless feeling that I can not be with someone even though we love each other because of this. When you truly love someone and this happens you are left wondering how this could happen. I understand where she is coming from but dang, I wish she would give me a chance. I feel like my heart was ripped out and kicked around the street. So single moms out there, please look out for your guys. We have hearts too!

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mssinglemama January 24, 2011 at 8:58 pm

Shawn, that’s heartbreaking. I have a feeling she will come around. Just be patient until the dust settles with the ex and her taking full-custody. I’m sure she just wants to focus 100% on the children right now.

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Tinderbox January 24, 2011 at 4:26 pm

@ Kasia
“Following your heart” is what led most single moms to where they are today. By definition that means ignoring good judgment. Perhaps following the head would be a wiser plan instead of indulging the romantic butterflies yet again.

@ Shawn Diego
10-to-1 she’s found another guy who she finds more dangerous and exciting, just like the original guy she chose to reproduce with. I know that’s blunt but it’s what it sounds like to me.

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Richard January 28, 2011 at 7:32 am

My dissolution was final in December. As I left the court hearing, the thought I will never forget was, “I’m single now. I’m in no hurry to change that.” I am enjoying waking up each morning by myself and discovering the world in which I live. I am also enjoying the occasional date but, I’m in no hurry to rush into another bad relationship. Instead, I’m enjoying meeting new people and having a good time. It helps to be surrounded by good friends- I don’t need a relationship to make me complete.

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