As some of you may know by now, I am a single mother. In an Asian “traditional” context, it is like being a “ghost” – because there are people who will never really see you, and then there are those who can see you but they are too afraid to go near you. In fact, some will quickly run the other direction.
Although we claim that we all live in a modern society, certain “stigmas” still exist. Some view single mothers as a “death sentence” because no man would willingly want to pay and raise another man’s kid/kids. It is like picking up the tab for someone else’s fancy dinner party that never ends. Or, it is like what the dude below posted in his FB status.
Most of the time, single mothers are labelled as “a truckload of baggage”. And in Asia, some very rich and very married men actually think of single mothers as perfect “mistress-material”. These men assume that single mothers would welcome the financial support, as well as getting laid on certain days of the week. Apparently, the wealthy married men are never available during weekends. Weekends are reserved only for their real families. I know this NOT from personal experience, but from some single mother-friends who only date married men. Well, they have their own personal reasons for “enrolling” themselves into that kind of arrangement, but we shall not get into that in this post.
So, in a world filled with young, beautiful and available women – single mothers seem to be pushed to the bottom of the barrel, in terms of dating and men. We seem to be stuck with the married ones, or the men no sane women would want, or those we may have to end up supporting – both financially and emotionally.
In other words, “good men” would not willingly choose us – because in choosing us, they would also have to explain to their parents, family and friends as to why they chose “us” when they could easily have someone younger, more available and without all those “excess baggage” to deal with. Especially, if the men in question have never been married, and are “eligible bachelors” for every “single” woman out there.
Hence, you might appreciate why I have not dated for over ten years. In fact, my daughter has just turned thirteen. I got divorced before she turned two. I think many people may find this shocking, but I assure you – it is true.
However, this does not mean that I have not been pursued or “propositioned” in all these years. I just have not been “enticed” or “inspired” to take up on their offers for dates…until this year, that is. It all began when my daughter officially became a teenager, and told me “to go get a life and start having fun again”. I am certain it is a ploy just to get me off her back.
Nevertheless, I started being more open and went out on a few dinners, or drinks just to meet new people. I wanted to check out how much the dating scene had changed since I was last an active participant of it. A decade can alter a great many things. I had forgotten what a date looked like, and felt like. To this day, I have only been on one “drinks date” and three “dinner dates”. No, they were not with the same men. Yes, it was purely for drinks or dinner. Let’s just say that it was a real eye-opener for me. Now, I can understand why some single mother-friends of mine prefer to just stay at home. They have resigned completely from the dating world, and have quit on men.
So, this post is specifically DIRECTED at the guys out there – who are open enough (or courageous enough) to date single mothers but have very little clue as to what it really means.
I came across two interesting articles written by men, for men with regards to this topic. They are:-
1) “Having Sex With a Single Mother” – This article is from a site called: The Modern Man. The founder of “Modern Man” is also the author of the article. His name is Dan Bacon. His site’s tagline is “Dating Advice That Works”. You can read all about it here.
Notice that the first article’s title is “having sex with a single mother”, where as the second is “dating a single mother”. I am inclined to think that the first article wants you(the men) to “score”, where as the second article wants you to develop a real relationship with a single mother. Either way, I am sure the “ultimate” intent is to “seal the deal” – as with all dating tips for men. Sorry, I could not resist inserting that bit.
Though both articles provide helpful advice, I found the second piece more insightful and understanding of single moms. However, I would like to highlight these 7 crucial points to the male-readers out there.
1) First and foremost – you do have to ask yourself if you are seriously MAN ENOUGH to take on the challenge of dating single mothers? It is unlike dating single women. I can guarantee you that. If you are not up for it, then just walk away and don’t even start – no matter how hot that yummy mummy looks like. I repeat, just walk away.
We have a chinese saying and it goes something like this, “Do not start something that you cannot follow through and complete.”
2) Know that your normal “modus operandi” in dating or your usual “game” may not work all that well with single mothers. They have been through enough unpleasant or disappointing experiences with men, So, please do not toy with her. Do not BS her with the routine sweet nothings and cheap talk. Be straight and upfront with her. No games. Seriously. She does not have the time or day to deal with that kind of BS. She has a bunch of things going through her mind and they all require her immediate attention, because she has to multi-task, ALWAYS.
3) There will be a lot of resistance, ups and downs from the very start. Do not expect that it will go away anytime soon. Single mothers are more cautious and guarded with their hearts. They may seem vulnerable and emotional, but they remember what it was like to be “suffocated” in a terrible relationship/marriage, to have their hearts shred to pieces, and they do not EVER want to go through that EVER again. So, please do be VERY patient, compassionate and understanding towards her and her “crazy” life.
As Lawrence Mitchell wrote in his article, “You thought your life was tough? Try being a single mother. Think you have a lot of responsibility to shoulder? Try being a single mother. Try being accountable for another life. Chew on that before you complain that she has to get back to drive the baby-sitter home.”
Take comfort in the fact that eventually, your persistence will prove to her that you are worth her time and most importantly, her heart. Therefore, don’t be flaky and unreliable.
4) Her Kid/Kids will always be NUMBER ONE. You may only reach number 3 or 2, at best. Should she receive a call from her child/children, or (touch wood) if there was to be an emergency involving her children, she will spring into action for them and leave her date with you. Or, if her ex-husband could not collect her kids at any assigned time, she will have to rush off to pick up her kids and break her date with you.
Accommodating to her child’s needs supersedes yours. If you can understand this, then you would know how to be supportive of her and not blame her. And by all means, please do not ever put her in a position whereby she needs to choose between you and her kids. You will never stand the chance. Because she had spent nine months carrying her child, then delivered that child with considerable pain, and then she continued to spend years nursing that child through every wound, and scar. Her love for her children will never stop or die. A valuable word of advice here, please do not ever refer to her kids as “baggage”. Her kids are individuals she loves and cares about deeply. Kindly please respect that.
If you seriously want to date or have a relationship with a single mother, you have to understand how deeply she values her kids. Then, when you have made it through the front door and be introduced to her kids, you’ll consider yourself “officially welcomed” into her inner circle, so to speak. You’ll also appreciate what a “milestone” it is for you to be able to meet with her kids. So, please do invest the time and effort in getting to know her as well as her kids.
However, a word of caution here. Please be sure that you are really into this woman, because once you get involved with her kids’ lives as well, anything you say and do will also affect them.
“Make certain that the woman is worth it or else, you will disrupt more than one life.” ~ Lawrence Mitchell.
5) Are you prepared to make certain sacrifices? There could be some real changes to your lifestyle. Because suddenly, you may find yourself visiting more playgrounds than clubs, or going to places which are only family friendly, and etc. You would also have to deal with her EX. And this will not be a one-time thing. Unless, if her EX is dead, lives in another country or has been completely estranged from her and the children. Your usual activities will also change, perhaps even your car. Say goodbye to your sexy sports car or any dreams of owning a sleek two-seater, and say, HELLO to Minivans or SUVs. Yes, you do really have to think this one through.
6) Not all single mothers are jumping at every chance to hook up with a man. These days, more and more single mothers are very discerning and less desperate. In fact, many single mothers are not at all desperate. We do not usually hang around in clubs or bars, longing to be picked up. Not typically. Heck, at every chance of any free time, we’re more likely to catch up on some serious sleep for a change. So, if you seriously want to establish a real relationship with a single mom, you need to give her advance notice for dates, getaways and any other planned activities. Her life runs on a very packed schedule that is intimately synced with her children’s school calendar year. Above all, expect that there will always be a chance of sudden change of plans and even cancellations at the very last-minute. Please be very considerate of this whenever you plan something with her, or for her.
7) SINCERITY AND HONESTY at all times. I cannot stress this enough. Yes, there are single mothers who just want to have fun and probably might just use you for sex and only sex. Yes, what a dream come true that would be for you. However, the majority single moms are looking for someone much more stable, mature and responsible. So, please be absolutely clear as to what you want and KNOW exactly which type of single mother she is.
As Dan Bacon puts it, “Determine which category she fits in and what your intentions are with each single mother…if you know that you’re only interested in a fling and definitely don’t want to be saddled with the additional responsibilities of dealing with and paying for someone else’s children, it would be unfair to pretend to her that you’re a potential husband or a committed father figure. Single mothers appreciate your honesty more than you will know, so never put on an act – it’s bad news for both of you.”
So, after reading all of the above, you must be wondering – why bother dating a single mother in the first place, right? After all, there are other “fishes in the sea” and they come with less “demands” or “conditions”.
You are definitely spoilt for choice out there. You do not have to date a single mother.
At the end of the day, what it is really all about is FINDING THE RIGHT WOMAN FOR YOU.
Some male friends of mine have dated, and even married single mothers. They tell me that the rewards far outweigh the risks or challenges. They have grown to love her kids as much as her kids have grown to love them. That familial bond became something which they grew to cherish over time. It is a constant learning process. Sometimes they get it wrong but other times, they excel.
There are also men who would only date single mothers. They reckon that single moms are more mature, stable and understanding. They feel that they can actually have real conversations with the single mothers, minus all the mind games and guessing games. Like all relationships – it takes time, work and love. In the case of single mothers, you have to add her kids into the whole equation.
Lawrence Mitchell points out in his article that, “the reward to dating a single mother is considerable. She could end up as the most devoted and loving woman you ever meet, if you exercise patience and compassion from the outset.”
Dan Bacon further states in his article, “So, if you like a certain woman – don’t worry what people think. Go with what makes you the happiest.”
I will leave you with three questions to ponder upon.
1) Does she get you like no one else can or ever could?
2) Would you do the things with her and for her that you normally would not do for anyone else, but feel like it is the most natural thing to do?
3) Can you imagine continuing your life as it is without ever having known her?
When you know the answers to the above, you’ll have the answer you need.
Happy dating and the very best of luck!