Dating a single mom is about the worst thing that anyone could put themselves through. So says several so called dating experts. Single moms are high maintenance, over caffeinated, man-haters. Hmmmm…well as the saying goes, don’t believe everything you hear, or read.
I know a thing or three about dating single moms. After all, my mother was a single mom for 15 years, my ex-wife was a single mom, I’ve dated single moms, and yes, the majority of my clients have been single moms. Here’s the thing, and there’s really no way around it. Are you ready for it? Single moms are…women. Imagine that. They are flesh and blood. They have needs. They want to be wanted. They are at times happy and at times upset. I know, what a wonder to behold!
Can single moms be high maintenance? I don’t know, do pigs fly? Can they be man-haters? Sure, just as divorced men can be women haters. There is no secret sauce here. And yet, we love to generalize people based on personal experiences that we have had, or stories we have heard. Speaking of, let’s talk about the four biggest complaints that ‘experts’ spout about dating single moms. Stop me if you’ve heard any of them before.
1. Lack of availability: Apparently there’s this HUGE issue with single moms not being available for men. Karen was supposed to go out with Rusty but she had to bail at the last minute because her babysitter got sick. Such a bitch, that Karen is. And poor Rusty for being on the receiving end of such tomfoolery, eh? It should also be noted that no other human has ever or will ever need to cancel plans for any reason whatsoever.
2. Pay too much attention to children: Marc really likes Terri but he often feels under appreciated and under attended to. Why? Because Terri showers her daughter with a lot of love when Marc is around. I don’t know about you but Terri sounds like a real piece of work. Who in dogs name finds it okay to be a loving parent around a self-absorbed, man child? Oh, the horror! Next thing you know, we’ll be talking about Marc needing to cancel on Terri because his brother is in the ER.
3. Distrustfulness towards men: Moira was cheated on by her husband and now she is much more cautious with her heart in the dating world. This makes Alan pause because he doesn’t want to date someone who can’t trust him. Never mind that they have known each other 4 days and she has been raked over the coals before. Has Moira taken her hurt out on Alan? No. Has she questioned his intentions? No. But Alan has never not trusted someone so this is a whole new ballgame for him.
4. Clinginess: Did you ever hear the one about how every single mother that gets winked at or asked out by a man will hang onto his every word and wrap herself around his legs, literally? Yay, they are apparently so desperate to find a man for themselves and their children that single mothers latch themselves to men. Run. Run far, far away I say!
Or, you could wake up and smell the coffee.
People work and have uncontrollable things come up in their lives. Translation: A lot of men and women are unavailable at inopportune and unexpected times.
Children are important. So are friends and family. Of course, when your child needs you, you cannot simply ask them to take a rain check. As well, hugs and kisses go a long way to developing a healthy child-parent rapport.
Anyone that shows no ounce of caution after being cheated or abused is bound to face the same sting twice.
Verdict? Single moms are human and they experience human things. We simply choose to see them through a different, more negative, lens. The question is, why?
I’ll give you four reasons.
1) Environmental stigma’s: Although times are changing, we still see single moms through a critical, stereotypical eye.
2) We can: Stereotypes and generalizations, when unchecked, roll on.
3) Insecurities: We want someone to pay attention to us, to be with us. Single moms are a convenient group to lash out at when someone (gasp) cancels on us or shows attention to someone else.
4) Exit strategies: When a group of people have such a stigma around them, it’s really easy to get in, get out, and place the blame squarely at their feet.
That’s all folks, nothing to see here. Single moms are everyday people with everyday joys and problems. And for anyone who would suggest that single moms are different because they have children, I point to Exhibit A: Single dads. How many articles or video’s can you find that point to how undateable they are? Exactly.