Online Dating for Single Parents is something internet dating was invented for! While dating in the real world can be quite a challenge when you are a single parent, with online dating you can avoid all the bad experiences and dud dates, by narrowing down your potential matches to just those with real potential.
Of course, once you have whittled away the chaff, depending on the age of your children, you may need to organise a childminder, and of course you may need to be home at a certain time, your kids might not take kindly to you going on dates, and your kids probably don’t want you bringing new and ‘strange’ dates back to the home. Plus, your home may be small and things can get tricky.
So, how do you navigate online dating when you have children?
As in all cases, we think honesty is important. Of course each situation is different, but rather than avoiding telling your children anything, talk to them and keep communication channels open, make them part of the adventure and get their input. If you are dating with the idea of meeting your soul-mate, there is no harm in telling your kids that ‘Mommy is going on a date tonight.’ You don’t have to give them the details, and you know how much to share, but don’t keep your entire dating life secret. Your kids are not silly, and honesty is the best policy.
Saying that, do not introduce your children to your dates too early. You might strike lucky on your first online date and marry her or him, but most likely you will go on a few dates via a dating site before meeting anyone with real potential. Don’t bring your dates home too early!
Unless you are on a dating website for Just Single Parents, in which case it is obvious, you must also tell your potential date that you have children and are a single parent. You have absolutely nothing to hide or to be ashamed of. Again, honesty is the best policy, and whether you are a single mom or a single dad, embrace it and be proud of it., after all the idea here is to meet in real life and possibly share a life, so any lies could come back to haunt you or make you miss out on that one special person. Just be yourself.
What about the big X?
When you do go on dates, do not talk about your ex. There is nothing more boring or off-putting. With time, you will get to the conversation about why things didn’t work out or what went wrong. But don’t talk about it too early on. Rather, focus on the here and now, and have fun, as well as meaningful conversation, about the present. You wan tot concentrate on the positives and almost certainly talking about an ex will be negative.
Lastly, be honest that you have kids and what role they have in your life. Don’t put pictures of your kids on your online dating profile if you only have them once a week. Children’s lives are private and precious. Your potential match is probably dating you for you, and not because you are holding hands or fishing with your five year old. Only put up pics of yourself, be honest about what you look like, what you do, and what your family situation is.
And then get out there and date. Because everyone deserves a lot of happiness and a family! Just be safe!