Single Moms and Dating – Oil and water or peanut butter and jelly?

Let’s face it, making the time to date while being a single mom is like trying to get your kid to consistently put their dirty clothes IN the clothes hamper as opposed to piled smack dab on the floor right in front of the hamper. It takes constant vigilance and repetition. Chances are you’re probably not going to find your “Prince Charming” on date one, but with some positive thinking and “Never Give Up!” attitude, you can be a successful single mom dater.

I’ve been reading a lot of dating advice for single moms online recently and I want to puke over most of it. “Don’t mention your child(ren) on the first date…” Are they serious? That’s like asking the single man on the date with the single mom not to mention his buddies, his career, or sports. Come on! If there’s something in my life I love, and about which I am passionate, I’m going to frickin’ talk about it. For example, I am a HUGE movie geek and I will often spew random movie quotes at people, including dates, just to gauge their own movie geek status. I ramble on about my writing and dreams.

It just so happens that I am passionate about being a mom. I’m not going to withhold telling my date about that week’s kids-say-the-darndest-things clip, simply because the RULES say I shouldn’t. For instance, the time my daughter came up to me and asked me a question about the plans for that day to which I responded really quickly, “I’m not sure yet.” After which she spouts off, not missing a beat, “I can dig it.” Or the humor and pride I feel when she uses words like “apparently” and “precisely” in the context of a nine year old’s sentence about Halloween or adults not listening to her. If my date’s not into the fact that I think my kid is funny as hell and deserves a mention, then he can go home alone and look for another less dedicated woman.

These dating advice columns say the reason behind this is the man knows you’re a single mom but he needs to know you’re more than that. What the hell? What’s more important than being a mother? A good mother proves you’re dedicated, loving, compassionate, selfless and patient–okay, sometimes on the patience, hey we all know how trying kids can be when they’re testing us. I’d be more worried about the women who never seem to care much about where their kids are or what’s going on with their kids first before planning all their upcoming dates. If the kids are under 18, they’re a huge part of the mom’s life and they shouldn’t be hidden away in the closet like dirty little secrets. At least this is the way, in my opinion, it should be.

Producing a positive contribution to society starts with the parents and if it’s just you doing the teaching, nurturing, and discipline then that’s all on your shoulders and it’s something to take seriously.

Of course if you’re not really trying to land a long-term relationship then I could see where keeping the kid talk to a minimum would be beneficial, even smart. I’ll add more on that topic soon.

For the record, every relationship I’ve ever been in, the man told me my passion about everything in my life is one of my best qualities. This includes how crazy I am about my daughter so either I’m picking the exceptions to this dating rule or the rule isn’t worth the paper it’s written on. Oh wait, it’s published electronically, so I guess that says enough right there.

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