What You Need To Know If You Are A Single Parent Entering The Online Dating World
Diving into the world of online dating can feel both exciting and nerve-wracking, but there is even more to consider if you have children.
Below we round up what you need to know before taking your first steps into this strange and thrilling virtual landscape.
Before anything else, put safety considerations first. If you get a funny vibe about a profile, or if it looks fake in any way, back away. Be sure to never give out personal information such as your address until you’ve reached a point where you’ve met in person – maybe even a few times – and feel comfortable in doing so.
When you arrange to meet for a first date, make it in a well-frequented public place and somewhere you’re familiar with. Again, if anything feels off, or if your instincts are pinging, bailout. Don’t worry about appearing rude; simply get to safety. Before you leave for your date, make sure your cell phone is fully charged, and tell a friend or family member where you are going and what time you expect to be home again.
Swipe Right With Care
Okay, now we’ve got the safety spiel out of the way; let’s get down to the nitty-gritty. The fact is, if you’re a single parent, you’re going to need to swipe right a lot more selectively than your child-free friends. This is sad. I know this from personal experience. But the other option is to match with guys that look like Jason Momoa but who have no kids and want to find a partner to spend every free moment they have doing extreme sports with. And unmatching with Jason Momoa for practical reasons is a real kicker. So, save yourself the pain, and choose potential partners who have a lifestyle that could potentially fit around yours as a single parent.
It can be helpful to see the other side of this – what are the considerations for those without kids when they’re contemplating dating someone who has them? Important issues could be about free time, feelings around co-parenting, and the necessary presence of an ex. Click now to read more about key factors in deciding whether or not to date a single parent, to get a view from a different angle.
Hold Off On Introducing The Kids
You match with someone; your lifestyles seem compatible; you’ve been out on a few dates and have satisfied yourself that this person is not a raving maniac. It can be easy to get caught up in the excitement of things – again, I’m not preaching: this is personal experience talking – and want to start introducing your new man to your friends, your parents, even your kids. In your mind, you know he’s perfect, and you can clearly visualize a relationship unrolling before you both like a red carpet.
It’s hard, but this is really important: wait before you introduce anyone to your children, however sure you are. You may have to kiss a lot of frogs before finding your prince, and some frogs are exceptional at disguising themselves as royalty. So hold back as long as you can, to be as sure as you can, before introducing a new partner to your kids. This will be a big thing for them, so when you’re totally, 100%, absolutely sure….wait even longer, just in case.
If you’re looking for a serious relationship, then you may need to treat your interactions on a dating site as you would a job, to see results; this means not only making time for the endless swiping but also carving out time for messages and – excitingly – actual real-life dates! This is imminently possible, but factor this in before signing up. Think about the time you have available to spend looking for love and the childcare provision you have when it comes to dates.
If you’ve not used childcare before, it’s a good idea to find an option that you’re happy with well before the prospect of a date, and have a couple of practice runs where you go out with friends leaving your child with the new minder or babysitter so that you don’t spend a date fretting about whether your little one is running amok or if the sitter has eaten all the biscuits.
Single Parent Specific
Finally, it’s worth bearing in mind that there are dating platforms available that are specifically for single parents looking to meet. This means that a Jason Momoa you find on such a site will probably be an absolutely perfect match. Single parent dating sites could be a great way to meet people who will understand the pressures of parenthood and appreciate the impact that this can have on dating – such as our inability to stay up late and the adverse effect of potty training on our blood pressure.
More than anything, what you need to know as a single parent about to enter the online dating world is that your worth is in no way diminished by the fact that you have beautiful babies. And that Jason Momoa, or anyone else, would be privileged to get to go on a date with you. As long as he’s aware that the date’s got to end by 8.15 pm because you’re going to get woken up at 5 am the next morning being poked in the kidney with a Monster High doll.