Last week (or maybe the week before, who can keep track), the stars aligned and I had a chance to ask some questions of Match.com‘s (gorgeous) dating expert, Whitney Casey, about finding a match as a single parent (Um, single parents have two times the dating success when they date online than those that don’t…fish in that pond y’all!) Dating as a single parent wasn’t what I was expecting, and it turns out finding love was a weird thing. So I had a couple questions, and when I asked some of my single mom friends, they had similar questions! It was great to hear an expert talk about some guidelines…still so much to learn!!
Personally some of the challenges I found when I started dating was finding time, a date required half the day of my attention between getting ready, getting my kids ready for the sitter, the driving to a public place (SAFETY FIRST!), and the actual date. Plus, I had to make effort to be date-ready (oh my patient friends who helped me pick out outfits for the first dates….thank goodness for unlimited text!) and it meant more than my mom-attire – It was a welcomed change, don’t get me wrong, but it was hard to focus on myself when my focus and priority are always on my kids. The other problem I found came down to timing dates to a time that worked for my kids and also their sitter. When you’re single you can decide on dinner plans at 7pm for 2 hours later and it not be an issue, that luxury didn’t apply to me and I found it a hurdle. And where do you even meet people?! I am a single mom who works from home. My social circle is almost nil. I joined a few online dating sites (Match.com, OKC, POF – Those in the online dating world know exactly what that means, because it’s the trifecta), and I can say I met guys in my early dating years in more sketchy ways. I just looked at it this way, what makes these people any less or more safe to be around than all the strangers any where else? At the grocery store, at the mall, at the gas station, at church…the idea that crazy unsafe people are only online is unfounded when you think that they can be at any place you go, ever.
Whitney brought up some great points, things I am pretty sure I’m guilty of. I know I probably talk about my kids too much, earlier this year I blogged about how I lost myself and in turn I feel like I never have anything to talk about when it’s just about me. Also when she said that guys are MORE attracted to a single parent, I was honestly shocked…67% even! Crazy (in a good way, obviously!). I think it’s also easy to say “Well I’m online dating…” and only have that as the net you’re casting (so many fish in the sea puns). But you should probably do all the other ways of meeting people, having friends set you up, meet people in church, go to all the social events you can find (and yes, Match.com has those Stir events you’ve probably seen commercials for! If you have no social circle, that’s probably a good way to go!) I am not the expert here, she is, but I think it’s pretty sound advice!
You never know where you’ll find love, but if you’re not trying online dating it’s probably time to give it a go and see what’s there! You can sign up for Match.com and use Whitney’s tips and maybe make some luck of your own :wink wink:.
I was compensated for my time and this post by Match.com, opinions and experiences of dating are obviously all my own…as tragic as they may be.