Single moms have it rough. They do the job of two parents, and thus have less time, less support, and far less understanding than partnered moms (not that any of them have life easy, either). Between struggling to support a family alone, they’re also trying to spend quality time with their kids. While motherhood in and of itself doesn’t allow much time for a woman to enjoy alone time, adult time, or especially sexy time, a single mom has to jump through extra hoops to take care of herself, and often is the target of criticism when she does. Society in general really disrespects and traps mothers, which is ironic and hurtful seeing as how we all come from a mother. If a mom works, she’s abandoning her kids. If she stays at home to raise her children, she’s lazy. If she goes out to have fun, she’s irresponsible. If she stays in to tend to responsibilities, she’s frigid and no fun. Can a mom ever win? And if she’s a single mother, chances are she’s felt the lonely hurt of being branded as damaged goods, her children are looked upon as baggage, and we’ve been led to believe that her stock as a sexual being goes way down.
Single moms are strong, hard-working, self-sacrificing, resilient, and yes- SINGLE MOMS ARE SEXY! They come in every age, shape, size, orientation, and personality. Single motherhood is more commonplace than ever before so, chances are good that if you are attracted to women, eventually the jaw-dropping subject of your affection will have a child. Dating someone with kids isn’t for everyone, but there are a lot of misconceptions about single mothers that keep people from pursuing a potentially wonderful interaction with an amazing woman. If you’ve ever caught yourself believing any of these stereotypes about a single mother, it’s time to think again.
- She is desperate and easy to please. Wrong! Single mothers are busy ladies indeed, so their time is very valuable. To get a single mom’s time takes a lot of planning and preparation on her part, so you had better be worth it. A single mother knows what she wants and has her priorities in place, so she doesn’t waste time on someone who is “just okay.”
- She’s looking for a new dad or parental figure for her kid(s). This is another myth. In some cases, the other parent of a single mom’s child is still involved in parenting. In other cases, the other parent proved not to be dependable in the child’s life. Either way, responsible single mothers are protective of their kid(s) and are acutely aware that they’re on their own until someone earns the privilege of being involved with her child(ren). This doesn’t mean that somewhere down the line a person she grows close to won’t have a role in their lives or ever be a parental figure, but it’s a process that takes time and is rarely an initial expectation. It is another hurtful stereotype that women with kids can’t wait to get a date so that they can lessen their workload by preying on and trapping the next person that shows interest in them.
- She’s looking for financial support. Unless you’re living in 1955, it’s ridiculous to think that a single mom is only going on a date because she is seeking monetary gain. Not to mention, it sells YOU short- she probably likes you because she thinks you are great. The reality is that single mothers often struggle to support a family on one income, it’s harder to find employment, achieve higher education and be considered for promotion if you’ve got school schedules, daycare hours-of-operation, sick days, and doctor appointments, so sometimes single moms make less money than partnered moms. But sometimes, they don’t. No matter what her financial status, a single mother should be allowed to be taken out to dinner or paid for on a date without feeling like a freeloader or a golddigger. And if she is able and offers to treat YOU on a date, let her know what a giving and thoughtful person she is (and if things go well, return the favor in the future).
- She’s looking for a relationship. Just like everyone else, single mothers range in expectations from wanting to have a fun sex partner (some are amazing, spontaneous queens of the lunchbreak hook-up) to hoping for a committed relationship. Not all single moms are looking for marriage and some have no desire to even be monogamous. Sure, a lot of moms would like a long-term relationship, but a sizeable population are perfectly happy not sharing every aspect of their life with another person and only have time, energy, and desire for a hot night once or twice a month to indulge their fantasies with someone they trust and are attracted to. To find out what a single mom’s intentions are, it’s best to ask and not just assume.
- She’s waiting by the phone for someone to call her. Most people think single mothers don’t have a life, but the reality is that they usually have too MUCH of a life. If you had the responsibilities of two people, you’d be pretty damn busy. Most single moms probably WISH they had time to sit on the couch and play “Angry Birds” until they hear from you, but more than likely, you’re going to be the one left waiting a little while for her to return your text. Spur-of-the-moment plans aren’t usually in the cards for a single mom (unless it’s on a day that a co-parent has the kids), and they need someone who is interested in them to respect their need to plan things out in advance. This isn’t a game of hard-to-get or an attempt to blow you off. If she invites you out for an impromptu date, or you’re down for a booty call and a sexy single mom gets in touch with you to do just that, understand that she has real-life commitments that could limit her free time and she’s not always available when you are, so if you happen to be available and it sounds like fun, take her up on it.
Now that these myths are dispelled, single moms sound pretty hot, right? A single mother has her own set of great qualities, just like every woman does. And while dating or maintaining a relationship with a single mom has its own set of unique challenges, she has a great ability to be communicative about her expectations, patient when the unexpected occurs, and considerate of your needs.
Finally, the thing in shortest supply for a single mom is time alone or time with other adults (in a non-work setting), and thus it is the greatest gift you can give her. Being a presence in her life that views her as sexy while still valuing and respecting her as a person is something ALL moms need, single or not, and these kinds of people are often in short supply for women with children. Being adventurous, sensual, giving, and considerate are things that go the distance in the appreciation department.
Maybe you’re not looking to date a single mother but you’re close friends with one who is really fantastic and deserves some spoiling. Buying her a gift card for some erotica or a quiet vibrator gives her the opportunity to go shopping for something she wants, and tend to something that’s very important (her own pleasure) but might not be something she’d think to do for herself. Offering to babysit while she attends a class at The Smitten Kitten or goes out on a date is a thoughtful gesture that lasts beyond the few hours you devote to watching her kids (and if you want her to love you forever, you can clean up while she’s out).
Naomi Hedonia is a writer, freelance make-up artist and photo assistant. Her interests include travel, domesticity and excessive manicures, and hates overuse of the word “random.” She is a mother of three and lives in the Minneapolis Arts District.