To help ease your way into the dating scene, you are likely searching for dating advice. You are single, you are a mom and you might be nervous to get back out into the somewhat intimidating world of dating. How can you feel more comfortable with the idea of dating while juggling the rest of your responsibilities?
Put Your Child First
While it is perfectly acceptable to casually date or seriously date, make sure to put your child's physical and emotional needs first. Until you find a man that you feel will be with you for quite some time, refrain from introducing your child too quickly. Introducing your child to every man that you date will create a sense of confusion and distrust in your child, making it harder for her to establish a quality relationship when the timing is right.
Find Time for Dating
Find an appropriate time for dating, avoiding having to make decisions involving your child, your job and your date. Some single moms find weekends to work best, when their child is at her ex's house. For others, dating might be best in the evenings, when the child is with a babysitter she enjoys spending time with.
Don't Let Your Date Make Parental Decisions
Until you are certain that the man you are dating will become a factor in your child's life, avoid giving him permission to make parental decisions or act as a caregiver. At first, school-aged children are often hesitant and somewhat bitter towards the idea of their mom having a significant other. To help ease your child's hesitations, encourage your partner to be more of a helpmate and friend to the child, being careful not to let the child take advantage of your partner.
Don't Lie to Your Child
It's obvious that your child will wonder why you are dressing up and leaving her with a babysitter or other caregiver, when that might have not been the case in the past. If your child asks where you are going, tell her. You don't have to give details or even introduce your child to your date until the timing is right, but you should never lie to your child and tell her you are doing something that you are not.
Listen to Your Child's Thoughts and Feelings
Although your child may be receptive to the idea of mom dating, it's likely that she will have some negative thoughts and feelings as well. Some children may feel that the time they once had with you, their mom, is being sacrificed now. Listen to your children and allow them to share their honest thoughts, being careful to not undermine or minimize their true feelings.
Provide Your Full Attention
When you are on a date, avoid talking about your child the entire time. Unless your date is receptive to hearing more about your children or asks questions about them, give them your full attention and learn more about who you are dating. Of course, if you find yourself getting serious with a particular date, he will likely need to know and want to know more about the special child in your life.