You played a key role in someone’s birth story, but the “loving partner” chapter unexpectedly ended. What comes next for you as a single parent? How can you move forward and find love again?
The LDS Matchmaker believes some of the worlds’ best dates are with single parents. Overlooking this loving and mature group for potential partners is a missed opportunity. As a single mom or dad, your experiences being married, demonstrate that you make a loyal partner who has already proven yourself reliable, adaptable and affectionate.
Below are a few questions to consider before entering into a romantic relationship as (or with) a single parent.
When is a single parent ready to date again?
If you’re trying to get back into the groove as (or with) a single parent, it’s important to understand expectations around dating. Thinking a new relationship would fix your stress or cure the blues might set you up for disappointment.
While some experts give specific advice on how many months to wait before dating again, The LDS Matchmaker recommends going by your emotional readiness vs. the calendar. The right time to date is when you’ve made significant progress in forgiving the mistakes of the past (your own, your ex’s or others associated with the situation).
Be mindful that pressure to “make something work” can influence you to date for the wrong reasons. Feelings of anxiety, depression and loneliness could cause you to tolerate a relationship with a less-than-ideal person for you, adding more stress and disappointment to your lives. Remember that a new relationship won’t fix underlying problems. Turn to friends, family and a good self-care regimen to help you cope with stress or situational depression.
When you’re happy with life’s flow, you’ll be more successful as a great partner in a loving relationship.
How do you re-enter the dating world as a single parent?
Finding the time to date as a single parent is often a challenge and many feel guilty for taking time away from children to socialize.
The LDS Matchmaker recommends that you plan ahead and schedule in advance some TLC for kids with family members or trusted friends a few times a month. This will open the way for you to accept or extend invitations when you’re really available.
If you end up without a date during your scheduled time, spend it investigating possibilities at singles activities, pursuing online dating or on some much needed self care to become the best version of you.
Many single parents take the first step back into dating by checking out the online dating scene. It’s an easy way to see what’s out there. Creating a great profile with flattering professional photos will help you see the kind of people interested in you.
How do you shelter kids from stress or disappointment?
Once you meet someone special, set an easy pace kids can accept. If all of your free time and mental capacity suddenly shifts to being with, talking or texting your new love interest, it’s easy for kids to feel neglected and jealous.
Help kids ease into your new relationship by asking them insightful questions about how would you feel if…
How would you feel if…I started dating? How would you feel if…You met a person that was special to me? How would you feel if…We spent Saturday together in the canyon with my new friend?
Gage each child’s acceptance or tolerance to the new situations. Control your talk/text time so it doesn’t interfere with parent/child time. Set the pace for the relationship based on their reactions.
Kids should not make decisions about your love life, but should get a vote since their life is dependent on yours.
Let your dating be an example to kids of how two people can lovingly enjoy and support each other. Show them how being courteous, kind and accepting of everyone’s feelings is important to both of you.
What about crazy exes?
Solving problems related to “exes” before you’ve decided if you truly like one another isn’t productive and holds back great couples from establishing lasting love.
There is legitimacy to concerns about dealing with a “crazy ex” if there is one in the picture. However, many couples split amicably and experience little to no drama after the relationship ends.
Once your connection is committed, it’s time to fully understand the dynamics of the former relationship and solve any problems associated with the situation as it relates to you as a couple.
The LDS Matchmaker has years of experience helping single parents step back into dating with confidence. Experts help single parents learn how dating has changed and how to enjoy the singles scene. Clients love learning everything from how to update your look, to creating an impressive online dating presence, to how you can be strategic with your time and energy. We teach you how to have a diversified portfolio of dating efforts and how to handle specific dating dilemmas and situations. If you’re ready to find lasting love, The LDS Matchmaker is ready to help you. Contact us at info@LDSMatchmaker.org or by calling 801-495-1000. Access our online calendar here.