How Do I Start a Relationship With a Single Mom?

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I have a crush on this girl, but she has a daughter. My friends say I’m crazy, but I really like her. Any advice for starting a relationship with a single mom?

Friend, Granny has advice for practically any situation, as Mama would be glad to tell you.  I’m a little more invested in this “dating a woman with children” issue than I should be; one of my daughters is divorced with a two-year-old son.  So be forewarned:  you are asking someone who has very definite opinions on this topic!

One thing bothered me about your question:  the use of the word “but.” Don’t even stick your head in the henhouse, son, if you don’t like baby chicks.   In other words, if you’re already thinking of that child as a “but” instead of an “and,” do not date this woman.  For her, dates will come, and dates will go, but her daughter is a daughter for life.  And any attempt on your part to drive a wedge between mother and child is not only destined to fail, it is just plain wrong.

If you are serious about dating this woman, ask her out for pie and coffee first to get her input on how future dates should go.  Most single mothers are extremely cautious about introducing any man into their children’s lives unless it turns into a more serious relationship.  So, you may not even have to worry about the child; she may keep that part of her life separate from you.  If, on the other hand, the two of you hit it off and begin seeing each other on a regular basis, here are some quick guidelines for you.        

 Don’t try to immediately step in and become a parent.  Like it or not, that child already has two parents, whether they live together or not.  You’re not a dad at this stage; what you are is a friend of Mommy’s.        

Don’t try to discipline; that’s the mother’s job.  Yes, it’s tough to sit there when the little darling is trying to give you a hug with grape-jelly fingers…but stuff washes.         

Do ask the mother how she wants you to handle the above situation.  Do ask her what type of discipline to use.      

 Always back up the Mama, even if you disagree.  (This tidbit of advice is a handy one to take right along into marriage.  There’s nothing stronger than a united front.  If you need to negotiate regarding rules, do it later when the child isn’t present.)        

Do schedule “alone time” with the mother as well as “family dates” that include the little girl.  A balanced life is very important for everyone involved.        

Do try to keep a sense of humor at all times.  Ask yourself if this is going to matter in five years.  Also ask yourself if you’re going to be laughing while telling the story.

Just remember that if you’ve been introduced to the daughter, you are most likely a very decent individual.  Just be yourself, be kind, be thoughtful, and treat both of them the way you want them to treat you.  Good luck, young man!  And if you have any more questions, just come on back.  Granny’s always glad to see you


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The answer to "How Do I Start a Relationship With a Single Mom?"

Question asked on April 24, 2008at 5:46 am:: Comments (0)

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