Talk

Advanced search

Dating as a single mum

(9 Posts)
IttyBittyKitty Sun 24-Jun-18 12:30:27

I've been on my own since my oldest was two years old, for 10+ years — no dating of any kind whatsoever, and my kids and I are like the three musketeers, real close. As time has gone on, I've found happiness in being single, and for the kids, this three-person family is really all they know.

So... I met someone. He's a work colleague who started out as a friend and my kids have already met him in that capacity. We're taking things slow, real slow, and I'm enjoying it but... it's kind of messing with my head. I've read other "dating as a single mum" posts on MN including those from mums with small kids who asked themselves if they should wait until the kids are older. I'm thinking that just might be more complicated! We're very set in our ways as a family and now the thought of allowing a new person into our private space if you like is just a bit daunting. I feel guilty as well, changing the family landscape at this stage.

If this post sounds confused, it's 'cause I am.

Does anyone have any experience with a similar situation?

OP’s posts: |
Kingsclerelass Sun 24-Jun-18 18:36:17

Been happily single, just me and dc for a while, so watching....

NorthernSpirit Sun 24-Jun-18 21:55:16

You’ve been on your own for over 10 years and i’m guessing your child is over 12?

You deserve happiness. Don’t put your life on hold.

somuchbetter Sun 24-Jun-18 23:36:34

I'm happily and unhappily single. Most of the time happily, but I do wonder if I should do something about it as I fear being alone in the long run
I've been single foe nearly 3 years after a 15 years marriage so for a lot of the time it feels like a treat - no cleaning after someone else, no bickering, I do as I please. My kids are happy, I am happy but there's also a feeling of fear and guilt about staying single.

IttyBittyKitty Mon 25-Jun-18 09:09:08

Yes, somuchbetter!!! It feels like a treat to me too, still, after all this time. I understand the fear, which I have especially with regards to being old and alone, but why the guilt?

My ex was abusive and I've worked very hard to create the stable life the kids and I have now. My guilt is related to fears over uprooting that stability. With the kids being older, part of me wonders if I should wait it out until they're grown. I feel I should at least keep cohabiting off the table until that time.

OP’s posts: |
somuchbetter Tue 26-Jun-18 00:11:13

My situation is not dissimilar, abusive ex, busy life oriented towards two goals: giving my two amazing children the best I possibly can and keeping a promise to myself - that I will never let myself depend on someone else
But life as a single parent has its struggles, both emotionally and financially. My kids have asked me on a couple of occasion, when they saw me struggle, why I don't remarry. In their eyes, it would solve the problems, I would get help, I wouldn't be so tired. I sometimes wonder if they are right, perhaps it would help all of us. But I made a promise to myself, that no one will be in a position to inflict the same damage to me and my kids ever again. Sometimes I feel guilty, what if I let my fear get get in the way of a better life for us all, what if I miss out on the opportunity to give them the happy family I always dreamed of giving them?

Eesha Wed 27-Jun-18 06:49:33

Maybe date and keep at arms distance so you don’t live together etc? Sounds weird but I know someone who did this after her partner died. Still together twenty years later.
My ex was abusive and a drunk so I don’t want to date because I never want the same thing to happen again.

BlueJava Wed 27-Jun-18 06:53:26

A very close friend of mine did exactly as you - met someone at work, took it slow, she has 1 DS. They have now married and all live together. He seems a lovely guy and she is so happy, her DH also makes a lot of effort with her DS, although that's not always reciprocated from him. I am so thrilled that she is happy and has someone to be with. She says she wasn't looking, it just happened but she's so glad it did!

PeppyPiggy Sat 30-Jun-18 13:13:07

You put in your post "the thought of allowing a new person into our private space if you like is just a bit daunting. I feel guilty as well, changing the family landscape at this stage."

Why does you dating mean you have to change the landscape of the family? He definitely doesn't need to be in your families private space.. IMO you should keep dating and your kids as two separate things that occasionally intertwine.. unless the man you are dating is the children's father OR until you genuinely start to feel this man is the one and someone you have a real and genuine intention to marry, which is not the case right now and why would you want to cohabit with this person yet? You said you are taking it slow. Figure out if this guy is right or not, take your time about it. Don't ever push him onto your kids or vice versa.

I also had abusive relationships, have you broken those patterns? and become more confident? Are you being vigilant about observing this guys behaviours? Abusive men can sniff out vulnerable unconfident women like predator to prey.... And abusive men can take a long time to reveal their true nature. I realised that my lack of healing from certain life events was what was drawing abusive men to me. Check yourself too hun x

I met someone a couple of years ago with two kids around the same age as yours now I'm guessing (11 and 13). He was careless about how much interaction I had with his kids, we had so many family days out without ever being certain about each other as life long partners. When I ended the relationship his kids would send me messages on instagram saying they missed me and showing me their newest drawings and poems... it was really heartbreaking. I saw one of them a couple weeks ago and when he saw me his face went red and burst into a smile and he hugged me and his eyes welled up sad I think their dads carelessness about intertwining his relationship with his family lead to his kids being a bit heartbroken, they also had never experienced their dad in a relationship and their mum wasn't really present.

My mum kept her boyfriends pretty separate from me and my bro and I am SO glad she did! I never even realised that when I went on holidays with my dad or grandparents my mum was going off on holidays with her bfs lol! She never pushed her relationships into our lives. And when she found the man she went on to marry it was a slow transition, he wasn't in our faces all the time even after them marrying. Eventually her husband became a great friend to me and my bro smile he gave my bro his first ever job!

Take it slow, make sure you really know this guy and his character and are sure of your feelings for him. When you get to that point of certainty, you don't have to change your family landscape or anything like that. Let him become a friend to your kids at a natural pace.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in