Through my circle of friends and women I meet through my blog, I often hear cries of horror about the thought of dating after divorce. Especially if you have kids. What man in his right mind would date someone with so much baggage? I can’t imagine getting out there again! My body is a wreck and I haven’t been on a date in 15 years!
These women are missing out. Big time. I’ve spent the past three years dating as a single mom — including a year-long relationship — and let me tell you something: there is no better time than to date than as a single mom. Here’s why:
1. You’ve got your kids. Now you can date for you. When I was dating in my twenties, I was looking for a husband with a healthy set of testicles with which to sire children. I have them now. Two awesome, healthy ones, in fact. I can check that off my life to-do list and look for a man for love or companionship or sex – or all three. The pressure is off.
2. You are kinder to yourself…and that makes you a delight to be around. Divorce is a bummer. So many disappointments, self-blame, and broken hearts. To move on, you must forgive. Forgive yourself. Forgive your ex. Forgive the friends and in-laws who you felt deserted you. This kindness bleeds into your other relationships. Since my divorce I have found that I am so much less judgmental of myself. I am also far less critical of other people, including men. And guess what? They seem to like me more for it! Imagine that.
3. You’re a stronger, happier version of yourself. Being a single mom means that you have been through at least two life-altering experiences. 1) you became a parent, which will blow your mind, heart and life in incredible ways, and 2) you’ve found yourself single after a serious longterm relationship. Whether the single part was by way of divorce, breakup, death or choice, it was a big deal, and that changed you. You survived that, and not only are you better for it – you’re sexier for it.
4. Oh right – you’re sexier. Confidence, a full heart, and life experience all equals being a richer, fuller person. People are attracted to these qualities in a real, meaningful way. Especially the people you want to attract, aka awesome men.
5. You accept your body. You’ve carried and birthed and nursed a baby. You know what an amazing thing the female body is. Its imperfections? Who cares! Age and childbearing has allowed you to enjoy your body for all it has to offer. Including sex.
6. Sex is better. When you feel comfortable with your body, let go of past hang-ups, and are less critical of your partner – that’s when stuff gets good. Plus, there’s no pressure re: babymaking (see No. 1).
7. You’ve become who you are. When I met my husband in my mid-twenties, I was still struggling to make my way professionally. My longest friendships were still forming, and I was still figuring out what was most important to me. Now, I have reached many milestones in my career, relationships, and inner life. I know who am, and what I want. Which makes dating about 1000 times easier.
8. You are not that annoying, needy girlfriend. Women with kids have a whole lot of responsibilities. Our time is limited. How could we be clingy? When we do have time for boyfriends, we make the very most of it. Throw a fit because he didn’t text for 3 days? Please. I have lunches to make and doctor appointments to schedule.
9. You’re less susceptible to wasting time on the wrong guy, because you have less time. Busy single moms have fewer lonely nights to fill, fewer dinners eaten alone. There is less temptation to piddle away hours with losers just because you’re lonely. Time is precious, and efficient moms know that the best way to spend time with a man is truly enjoying a really, really great one.
Emma Johnson is a New York based freelance business writer and mom to two preschoolers. She blogs at WealthySingleMommy.com.