When do you give up on single mom dating?

by mssinglemama on November 4, 2012

Here’s an interesting question from a Facebook fan. This question, by the way, could have come from me a few years ago, or from many single mom friends I know who are struggling with dating right now.

The question is from Sarah, a dating single mom…

Alright, I’m about to give up! I’ve done the online dating thing. I meet GREAT guys, but none that I click with. They have everything I’m looking for, but there is zero passion and zero chemistry… And it seems like I’m the only one who notices it. The one person I clicked with is separated (which I kinda have a rule about not dating people who are not completely “un-married,” which I broke) and he was really scarred from his marriage.

I ended it because I knew it was doomed – he needed time to heal. I raise my daughter solo (bio dad decided to bail totally 2.5 years ago) and I’m a teacher, so I have no time to go out and hope that Mr. Right will stumble into my life. I feel like I’m a catch (I mean this in the most humble way possible), but I can’t seem to find my soulmate! What gives? Please offer me some advice before I join a convent!

My advice to her… 

1. Keep going if you can.

Dating is tedious and painful and downright annoying sometimes, especially when you are waiting and hanging on for that big spark (rightfully so). But, it can be fun. Hear me out on this one. If dating is not fun for you–change your mindset. It is a chance for you to go out with your friends and meet new people (I recommend group dates on those precious Saturday nights when the sitter’s watch is ticking). It is also a chance for you to get yourself back out there.

2. Date for fun, not to find a husband. Re-align what you expect out of dating.

If your goal in dating is to find “The One” and meet your husband, you may be setting yourself up for failure and disappointment. Also, you could be coming off as too desperate to the men you do see. When I posted my OkCupid ad–the one Seth found–it said, in no uncertain terms, that I was not looking for a serious relationship. I wanted a person I could trust and have fun with, that could possibly lead to other things. My frame of mind was relaxed and I understood that, for me, dating was fun! And then, BAM, I met him and of course, knew right away he was the end of the line for this mama.

When you do re-align your mindset and define your dating goal in more realistic terms you can’t lose because you end up having more fun. And that’s really what it’s all about. Fun.

3. Remember to date yourself first. 

Dont’ ever forget my old advice to date yourself first. Treat yourself as you would want him to treat you. Read up on an old post I wrote on this subject– would you date yourself?

Other oldie but goodie posts on dating as a single mom. I know these will help:

Hope this helps, my Lovelies. Keep your chins up. And keep yourself out there or take that much needed time to yourself to just re-energize.


{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Chris R November 9, 2012 at 9:17 pm

What a great post. As one of your Single Dad readers I have to say to you single moms, it is hard for both single mom’s and dad’s to get out there and date. I love my little one so much and being a responsible dad I try to do the best thing.

I think your advise was great and spot on. I feel everyone should just relax, take a breath and then you will most likely meet that special someone when you’re not looking! What you said though is true, date for fun! Go out and just have dinner or talk, have a cup of tea or coffee. Once you start to put pressure on things you feel you have a time limit.

Also, not that this is bad but if “we” as single parents never date, then always remember our kids will always be our biggest fans. I’ve accepted I maybe single forever, IDK.. But i will put all my effort and love into my relationship with my daughter. In the end we have to realize sometimes we have to give up or dreams, in order for our kids to have one…

Very nice post!
~Chris R


Dan Murray November 10, 2012 at 7:01 am

Hi Chris,

I can’t talk for the single mums here, but I can talk for the men. I don’t know your background and I truly understand your point of view when it comes to your child, but by thinking love will just show up on your door step, or even, not to fall in love again is heart-breaking.

Excuse the phrase but “love is all around us” mate. It branches out, it glows and grows everywhere. To have the mind-set you’re in right now you’re not in turn with it’s vibe, so you’ll miss or even forget it’s warmth.

Like I said before, I don’t know your background (a break up or lose) so I ask the following with respect…

When your child is older, do you think your little one would want you to be happy? To have someone in your life you can love other than him/her?

Plus, it’s healthy to have love it are lives and to show that to are children so they grow up wanting the same. Food for thought.


Chris R November 26, 2012 at 9:05 pm


Thank you for such a nice response. I was thinking about what you said/asked. I don’t know yet honestly… I think when it comes to me, I think my daughter would want me to be happy. I would still put 100% effort into her and making sure she knows how much i love her. It is a tough question, sometimes i wonder if the single dad that shows his loyalty toward his daughter makes them really know that dad loves them.

How ever you can love your child and still move on. I listen and talk to single parents and kids of divorced parents all the time and just take in what they say. Everyone is different. I guess thats what makes life so amazing.

Thanks again Dan hope to talk to you more
~Chris R


cindy November 16, 2012 at 2:12 pm

I think i might be in the same camp as Sarah. I just ended a relationship this week with a man i thought was ‘the one!” I thought finally… i have a family back! Finally I have those awesome family hikes, cozy movie nights, camping trips, all of it. He loved my kids like they were his. But for a number of reasons, differences in parenting styles, outlook on spending/saving, and communication styles … it was bumpy for months and it ended.
I’m tyring to redefine ‘family’ in my mind. My toddler, kindergartener and I are the family. I’m thinking the heartache of losing another relationship or losing the dream of a ‘family’ again isn’t worth it. I feel like i’m back to square one …. like where i was post divorce. When does it get easy and uncomplicated?


Kathleen November 17, 2012 at 8:03 pm


I’m going through something similar. My first long-term relationship post divorce ended a few weeks ago. The relationship itself was just fine– and that’s not me looking through any rose-colored glasses. We didn’t fight, we communicated well, everything was fun, loving, supportive, and overall pretty great. Apparently this guy thought it was going a little too well, as he started to consider a more serious future together and basically got scared and left. It’s complicated, involving his own divorce story, significant attachment issues, (unfounded) worries over his career, but the end of the story is that although he loves me very much, he doesn’t want to continue in this relationship.
It’s heartbreaking, and I can’t help but take it personally. How can this have happened to me again? I’m sure that eventually I’ll be ready to get out there yet again, but dating seems awful and just kind of gross to me right now. I’m in no way looking for (or even believing in) ‘the one’, but it is so frustrating to have thought I was with my life partner (twice) and been wrong (twice). Boo. It stinks.


Jennifer November 18, 2012 at 2:27 pm

Great post! I do believe that we should not be chasing after love. It’s not going to fall in our laps but the best way seems to be just allowing it to happen if it comes. Single moms have a tougher time I think because of the demands on our lives.


Sarah Getz December 2, 2012 at 12:55 pm

What a spectacular blog! I just stumbled through here, and I’m hooked already! Thanks for being a voice for other women like me.



Suz December 2, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Great blog. I’m one that’s given up, and started again, several times over the years…you are spot on about dating for fun not matrimony – too much pressure! I am more in the camp of “it’s not me, it’s you”…it seems every man I meet online (I can’t find one anywhere else) is completely inept or just apathetic about courtship. They text at odd hours, they can’t commit to even a meeting place/time, much less a relationship, they have strange behaviours or addictions. I’ve tried different websites. I just can’t seem to find a better caliber of men, and think a lot has to do with where I live (Florida)- people are shallow and materialistic, and there’s always someone younger, better looking, or wealthier out there :/ I would love to move but can’t, not for awhile, anyway. So I’m retired from dating temporarily but who knows, maybe next month will look better?!


Lisa Italroz December 6, 2012 at 2:34 am

Hmmm..I just give up for being single a few weeks ago. And now, starting a new beginning with a new partner. I know, it’s not this easy, but I need to give it a try for the second time, maybe I can have that loyal and sincere man someday. I need to wait until he will come on me for real. 🙂


Amber December 11, 2012 at 1:47 pm

I am so glad I came across this blog. I am a single mom too and feel the same frustrations as you guys. It is so nice not to be alone in this. I have been divorced for 5 years now and struggle with the same problems. I wanted a family so bad I married the wrong man when I was young, now I have our 5 yr old all by myself. I tried the dating sites too, but to no avail. I had some really bad experiences and pretty much gave up. Someone give me some good news. Cause I am so sick of hearing you will find someone, that person is out there. My friends and family have only told me that for five years now.


Kate December 27, 2012 at 4:43 pm

Hey guys! Liking the blog too. I’ve been a single mom for 19 months now. Loads of dates, but no-one wants to stick around. The only guys that continue to date me are the ones who have made it clear from the start that they do not want a relationship. Why? I have no idea. Note that I didn’t struggle to get a boyfriend before I had two children. I don’t want to give up, but each man that ditches me a few weeks in, does knock my self-confidence more each time. Good luck to you ladies. Hope one of you finds Mr Right! Xx


Mary Italroz January 25, 2013 at 3:00 am

Well, I guess I will give up for being a single mom until I will found someone who deserves and whom I can trust again. Someone who will truly love me and won’t hurt me again. And someone who could accept me as me and can accept my kids as well.


Babysitting Melbourne April 7, 2013 at 6:47 pm

Sarah l would advise you to never give up on the desire to find your soulmate. It will happen and when it does l am sure the wait will have been worth it. I can not provide much advice on what to do or what not to do, but l will say that l think you just need to live life as it currently is and spend as much time with your daughter, family and friends. Enjoy what you have and somewhere along the line things will just happen romantically for you. Keep having a look at various dating websites but dont log on with the mindset “I WANT A PARTNER NOW” just log on, have a browse, maybe a chat and after a while possibly arrange to meet the people you feel tick some boxes. You know in Australia (Football) we often say “Every Win Is One Closer To A Loss” and it works the same in reverse….. Every dud date is one closer to a fantastic date. So keep looking but ensure you live as normal as possible and keep in mind the law of averages applies…… Each date that dosnt work out puts the odds further in your favour for the next date !!

Ok all the best with it


mike June 13, 2013 at 2:38 am

never ever give up on dating. dont quit just because some loser read a book on how to get laid and treats you like a pervert. you deserve better.


Elisa Brentwood December 14, 2013 at 4:30 am

I’m a mother of two myself, also a single mom. I admit that bringing an extra baggage into a new relationship is not as easy as it sounds, but we must take our time and wait for the right person to help us unload. 🙂

Cupid Dating Guide


Ahmad Ave January 21, 2014 at 9:00 pm

Know what you want and dating can be very smooth, the pressure of dating will go away once you take away the mindset of pressure.


simplerelationships.net September 22, 2014 at 12:25 am

I totally agree and this just not only applies to single moms/dads but it also applies to everyone in the dating scene. Try to relax and have some fun, don’t pour yourself out to someone you think is “the one” because they might feel you are all over them and finally look for someone else who is more challenging etc. But this is just my opinion. – Ritter


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