Dating and Relationship Advice

Single mothers comprise 80% of the 13.6 million single parents in the United States. These women seem to do it all — they raise their kids, pay the bills, and hold down their household completely on their own. As the child of a single mother, I saw my mom do the job of two parents. Not only did she work extremely hard, she sacrificed having a romantic relationship so she could focus on raising me. But just because she did it alone, doesn’t mean she wanted to do it alone.

Dating as a single mom can be an emotional rollercoaster. Between dealing with your ex, your kids, and dating itself, it may seem easier to just throw in the towel and stay single. However, if you take the time to build the right foundations for you and your children, it’s totally possible to get back into the dating scene and find love, free of guilt or shame.

Make Sure You’re Ready

Before you start dating again as a single mom, it is important to make sure that you are fully healed from your previous relationship. Many single moms are still emotionally attached to their child's father, and sometimes carry baggage from a previous relationship.

It’s not fair to the person you are seeing if you have trust issues from a previous relationship. It is better to take a moment to think about whether you are emotionally ready to step into the dating scene.

Dealing With Guilt From Your Children

Sometimes kids react poorly to their single mom getting back into the dating scene. This is especially common with children of divorce and those who have experienced the death of a parent.

It’s important to sit down with your kids and explain to them that you have moved on from your past relationship and are ready to start looking for a new partner. You can even tell them what you are looking for in a new relationship and why it is important for a partner to have those qualities. This will provide them with foundational guidance for their own relationships later on.

Don’t feel like you have to be alone forever just because your kids are uncomfortable with the idea of you dating someone other than their father. In fact, starting a new relationship is a healthy life lesson for your kids because it shows you are resilient and can get back on your feet.

Tell Your Date About Your Kids

When pursuing a serious, long term relationship, it is important to disclose as soon as possible that you have children. Not everyone is a fan of kids and for some, it’s even a dealbreaker. If you’re looking for something more casual, kids may not be a topic that you need to bring up. But when looking for a long term relationship, telling your new partner about your children is an absolute necessity.

The Bottom Line

Single moms truly are superheroes and deserve just as much happiness and love as any other person. Just because they have kids doesn’t mean that they don’t have the right to find new love — it just means that they need to take extra care when it comes to making sure their kids are prepared, as well as their future partner.