Dating as a Single Parent: 8 Leading Experts Share Best Advice

Your children need to feel like they are your top priority, not second fiddle to your social calendar. Dating is the process of getting to know potential life-long partners. As you get to know each other, you could decide that a particular relationship isn’t for you. Give yourself time to see if the relationship is going somewhere before introducing your children—They do not need to meet four different dates in a month.
Once you’ve signed up, fill out the basics in your profile, upload a few recent pictures, and ask a friend to review it and give you constructive feedback, says Parrott. Once you get the green light, start looking for matches, and do so regularly. So, if you struggled with communication in your past relationship, take your year off dating to work on connecting with others and vocalizing what’s on your mind. If body image is an underlying issue for you, take steps to improve your own feelings of self-worth. It’s also not a bad idea to bring a therapist on board, especially if you struggle with self-reflection, says Laino. Deb Laino, DHS, a Delaware-based relationship therapist and certified sex educator, says questions like What do I do with my kids?
Yet, their fear of being hurt by someone they trust makes it difficult to bond and open up. Such individuals might have a hard time dating, since the process of getting to know and trust every potential partner might be painful, confusing, and distressing. Every day, Christina Rinken-Fabianich’s inbox is flooded with messages from men. They want to know about her job, compliment her or just say hi. After a 48-hour stint on eHarmony years ago, Rinken-Fabianich decided to try online dating again.
Only introduce your kids to someone you think is serious, and, even then, do it gradually. “Start by telling your kids about your partner and that you would like to introduce them,” Dr. Friedenthal says. While you’re trying to carve out a new normal for yourself, it’s important that your kids know they matter. “Not liking the fit between the person you are dating and your kids is a deal breaker, even if you love him or her as a partner,” Deal, MMFT, said.
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A romantic relationship helps you feel valued, sexy, and alive again. It reminds you of the woman you are beyond just being “mom”. Kids may be a source of pure joy, but the demands of being a single mom can leave you feeling depleted. We’re also going to answer some of your biggest dating questions and give you some helpful tips to make dating as a single mom work.