Being a parent can be the most fulfilling thing in the world, seeing your children grow up, learn new things, gain skills from you, you learn things from them, family days out. From taking their first steps to first days at school to first exams to preparing a speech for their wedding. What a rollercoaster! But as a single parent things can be a bit tougher from maybe not having that extra financial support, to not having that companionship and emotional support to discuss the worries and issues of the day with a partner, to even just having an extra pair of hands around to help with school lifts and dinner. You miss the closeness, the love, the sex?
Are you looking for something serious or more casual?
Do you know what you want? Do you want something longer term, something serious who wants to help bring up your kids? Or maybe just some good times, some adult company. A mixture? Or not sure, take it how it comes, see what happens? Being unsure of what you want can be helpful, although it may help your children if you are able to give them an idea of what’s going on. Also just having a think about it and having an idea might help when looking for and going on a date to give your potential date an idea of your expectations so neither of you either gets unnecessarily disappointed.
Finding people that work similar hours, this can be half the battle.
It can be hard enough trying to juggle work with school lifts and dinner without trying to fit dating as well in there! But if it’s something you want you owe it to yourself to try and fit it in, perhaps pull in those favours to help with the kids. And then obviously if the dating goes well there’s balancing the time for the relationship with work and kids.
Single parent dating
Has it been a while since you last went out on a date? It can be difficult to talk about anything other than kids – don’t bore them! Although alternatively if you both have children talking about the things you have in common and the funny things that kids do can be a real ice breaker!
Balancing talking about yourself and finding about each other can be difficult to get right. Gauge their interest in what you're saying and any subtle signs from their body language may help find common ground in values, beliefs and desires. Importantly enjoy it, it’s a night off, a night out. There's an essential first date checklist that might help with any first date nerves. Good luck!
Single parent relationships
As mentioned before, a main challenge can be balancing the time you have with work, children and your relationship. It may just help at the start to highlight this to one another as although you may think it's an obvious problem just chatting about the challenges can help each other to manage your expectations of when you can see one another or have some quality time. You could try and reserve a time of the week dedicated to family time and another time to your relationship and a bit of both. If you work dissimilar odd/shift hours is it possible for one of you to leave a little earlier once or twice in the week and the other to start a little later to try and get this balance? Some other thoughts of trying to balance dating, relationships with work especially if you work varied/irregular/shift/odd hours.
Being a single parent and trying to compromise dating, relationships, love, family and children with work can be difficult to master with perhaps quite a few stakeholders including children, families, ex-partner and a new partner, everyone with perhaps different wants and demands. Relationships, love and finding someone you can really get on with can be one of the most fulfilling and satisfying things in life so if you want this it may not be wise to ignore it.