What to expect when dating a single mom

We sometimes include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Read our affiliate disclosure.

If you’ve got your eyes set on a single mom, you’re in for a treat. 

Dating a single mother is like going on a thrilling roller coaster ride. It’s full of unexpected twists, turns, and amazing surprises.

Is dating a single mom worth it?

Of course!

Is it easy to date a single mom?

Of course not!

But hear me out:

It’s definitely a journey full of life’s most authentic, raw, and heartfelt moments.

Trust me, I know.

Because I was once that single mom.

On that note, based on first hand experience and that of others’, here’s a list of what to expect when dating a single mom:

1) You’re getting a package deal

Let’s get straight into the reality of it: 

When dating a single mother, her kids are part of the package – no ifs, ands, or buts. So as early as now, if that’s a deal you’d rather pass on, this article isn’t for you. And I hate to break it to you, but neither is the single mom you’ve set your eyes on.

But here’s the thing:

Many single mothers don’t introduce their kids to the person they’re dating until things get serious.

So when she starts talking about meeting her kids, consider it a compliment. It means she’s really into you and looks forward to a future with you.

If you’ve yet to meet her little ones, don’t fret. She may just be taking more time to suss you out.

In short, when dating a single mom, you may start off with the usual romantic date nights and all but expect that at some point in the future, weekend dates might mean trips to the zoo or the local playgrounds.

2) Her time is gold

She may look like a superwoman who can multitask and juggle a million things simultaneously.

But the truth is her to-do list never ends. Every day is a balancing act, and she’s always running against the clock. 

Between her children, her work, and managing the home, a single mother rarely has time for herself.

So if she makes time for you, consider yourself privileged.

Her taking the time to date you means she recognizes the value you add to her life. She doesn’t see you as just another task on her checklist. Instead, you’re a meaningful connection she consciously chooses to add to her already busy world.

So what does this mean for you?

Be considerate and patient. Expect last-minute changes due to family or work situations. Your flexibility and understanding can strengthen your relationship significantly.

So if you’re finding a spot on a single mother’s schedule, count your lucky stars. It means she sees potential in you worth exploring. Respect that, cherish her time, and reciprocate her commitment.

3) Patience will be your new best friend

The saying “patience is a virtue” takes on a whole new meaning when dating a single mom.

First off, let’s talk about the kids:

The reality is they might not like you at first. And that’s okay. Kids process break-ups and new relationships differently than adults do. It’s not that they’re trying to give you a hard time; they’re just adjusting to this new person in their mom’s life. 

So don’t rush things or take it personally. Hang in there, and they’ll come around eventually.

Next, let’s talk about commitment:

If it feels like the single mom you’re seeing is taking a while to commit, don’t fret. Again, it’s not about you; it’s about her kids. 

She’s taking time to make sure that what’s best for her kids aligns with what she feels for you. And let’s be honest, that’s some next-level maturity right there.

Finally, big discussions around moving in (or even popping the question) may take longer than your previous relationships. Remember, it’s not just her life she’s rearranging, it’s her kids’ lives too.

In a nutshell, dating a single mom might be a longer drive than you’re used to, but practicing the art of patience will eventually get you to where you want to go.

What would a relationship coach say?

While this article will shed light on what to know when dating a single mom, it can be helpful to speak to a relationship coach about your situation.

With a professional relationship coach, you can get advice tailored to your unique situation…

Relationship Hero is a popular site where highly trained relationship coaches help people work through complex relationship issues, like is it a good idea to date a single mom? Or what to do when dating a single mom. Their popularity boils down to how skilled their coaches are.

Why am I so confident that they can help you?

Well, after recently experiencing a tough patch in my own relationship, I reached out to them for help. From the moment I got in touch, I was given genuine, helpful advice, and was finally able to see my relationship issues with real clarity.

I was blown away by how kind and empathetic my coach was. 

Within minutes, you could be receiving life-changing advice on how to navigate the complexities you’re facing in your new relationship with a single mother.

Click here to get started.

4) She is extremely independent

Single mothers are fiercely independent. Let me give you a few examples:

Have you ever been on a date, and the lady pulls out her card when it’s time for the bill? That’s something a single mom would do. She’s used to having her finances covered,so splitting the bill is not a big deal to her.

When it comes to crises and problems, she’s not only great at solving them, but she’s always a few steps ahead.

Here’s a classic example: 

If her car breaks down, before you could even say, “I know a great mechanic,” she’s already got her trusty mechanic en route. 

You may feel useless and ask, “Does she even need me?”. That’s a valid question and an equally valid feeling. 

But here’s the thing:

She’s not looking for a knight-in-shining armor. What a single mother wants in a man is his ability to add color and thrill to her life. 

Because when you’re dating a single mother, it’s not about being needed. It’s more of being wanted.

Think about it:

Doesn’t it feel better that she’s dating you because she wants you and not because she needs you?

5) She appreciates and welcomes your support

You may be dating a woman who can seemingly do it all, but as we said earlier, never mistake her independence for not wanting support. Yes, she can handle a lot independently, but your helpful acts are absolutely cherished.

This scenario, for example:

After a long day at work, homework with the kids is next on her plate (after preparing dinner, of course). But if you step in and offer to make dinner, that’s taking a load off her already exhausting day. 

Or picture this:

After a rough day at work, she sometimes needs someone to vent to. If you’re there to offer your ears and a comforting word or two, you’ve helped her in ways you can’t even imagine.

Or how about this one:

She’s tied up at work and can’t make it to pick up the kids. You offer to swing by the kids’ school and do the pickup. 

I know these examples are simple acts. But to a single mom who’s juggling mountains of responsibilities, your support, in any shape or form, is a godsend.

So while she may not explicitly need your help, I assure you she wholeheartedly appreciates and welcomes it.

6) Authenticity and honesty are important to her

Whatever you do, avoid lies and insincere comments as these are some of the examples of what not to say when dating a single mom. 

Here’s why:

She doesn’t have the luxury of time to engage in mind or heart games. She’s already constantly juggling a lot. 

So when she brings you into her busy life, she’s looking for honesty. If you’re not completely genuine, she’ll spot it in no time.

So, what does this mean for you?

Transparency in your emotions and intentions is key. Be candid about your feelings and truthful about where you see the relationship heading. 

Whether you’re in it just for fun or you’re looking at something long-term, she deserves to know.


She’s not only sharing her heart but the hearts of her little ones as well. And she’s incredibly protective of them.

When you’re honest and bring a level of commitment that’s as real as it gets, you earn her respect and trust. And with a single mother, those two things are everything.

7) Her kids may put you to the test

She might not want you playing mind games, but her kids can and will test you with them – plus more. 

There’s a chance they’d pretend you don’t exist – a classic strategy to gauge your reaction. Remember, this isn’t about you. It’s the kids’ way of adjusting to someone new in their lives.

Brace yourself:

You might get caught off-guard when the kids ask tough questions that will help make their minds if you’re a good fit for their mom. 

Don’t forget:

Honesty is your best approach here. Just like their mom, they appreciate straightforward answers.

Oh, it’s also normal for the young detectives to observe your every move. This is a given. 

It’s their way of checking how you treat their mom and, of course, how you treat them. This isn’t them being difficult. They just value their moms and their own well-being. 

If you want to pass the test:

Patience, genuine kindness, and persistence will eventually win the kids over.

8) She’s not looking for her kids’ new dad

Speaking of kids, this may be a little too harsh, but this needs to be said:

The single mother you’re dating isn’t searching for a replacement dad for her kids.

What a single mother wants from the man she’s dating is for him to build a friendship with her children, not enforcing a father-child dynamic. This means you can laugh, play, and create happy memories without the pressure of filling in someone else’s shoes.

Keep this in mind:

She’s got her kids well taken care of. She’s done an exceptional job so far, so she’s confident in her role as their parent. Unless she explicitly seeks your advice or asks you to play an active role, it’s best to let her continue doing the parenting.

And, of course, you might grow to love these children as if they were your own – and that’s a beautiful thing.

But remember:

The key is to not to step on any toes. Building a relationship with a single mother’s children is best done with respect for boundaries and understanding of roles.

9) Her ex may still be in the picture

Since we’re already on the topic of parenting, let’s talk about the other parent: the dad.

Dating a single mom means that there’s a chance her children’s father might be an ongoing part of her life. There are a few reasons for this. For example:

It could be that they have a really great and successful co-parenting relationship, or it could also be the opposite, and there are still some loose ends they need to tie up after a bitter separation.

So what does this mean for you?

Be prepared to interact with the kids’ dad from time to time. You will bump into him during birthday parties, school events, or random run-ins during school pickups or drop-offs.

So here’s the key:

Remember that the children come first. Always.

So whether you get along with the kids’ dad or not, stay level-headed, respectful and keep your composure during these interactions.

Sure, doing this will give everyone a good impression of you. But more importantly, it helps create and maintain a calm environment for the kids.

10) Her past is part of her present

If seeing the kids’ dad in the picture is not enough, let me give you another hard pill to swallow:

Dating a single mother means accepting that her past is still very much a part of her present.

You might feel uneasy when you hear her talk about her previous marriage or relationship with openness and without a hint of resentment.

But don’t mistake this for her not getting over her ex.

In fact, it’s the opposite. She talks this way because she has moved on and matured.

Also, don’t be surprised if you see a picture of her children’s other parent displayed around their home. Again, this is not her still having feelings for her ex.

In fact, it’s not even for her.

It’s for her kids – because they have the right to remember these shared memories.

As we said earlier, her kids’ well-being is always a top priority.

11) Her love won’t be at first sight

Yes, you read that right.

Don’t expect love at first sight when dating a single mom. It’s not that it won’t happen – it can.

But here’s the deal:

A single mother would have already reached a point in her life where she knows love requires more than initial sparks. She’s also reached the point of experiencing something you may not have yet – love in its purest form. How?

It’s the love for her kids. This kind of love will change someone’s understanding of what it truly means to love and be loved.

So don’t expect a single mother to offer you a whirlwind romance straight out of the movies. Instead, expect a slow-burning, steady kind of love.

You know, the love that takes time to build. A love built on mutual respect, shared dreams, and a lasting connection.

The great news is:

When a single mother loves, she loves deeply, passionately, and selflessly.

So, while it may not be instant and at first sight, it will be a love worth your wait.

12) She is not just a single mother

Before I end, let me get one thing straight:

The single mother you are dating is much more than just a “mother.” She’s a wonderful woman in her own right – someone with passions, dreams, and ambitions that extend beyond motherhood.

So why is this important for you to know?

Your role as her new partner is to encourage her to embrace these parts of her identity. 

Cheer her on and allow her to pursue her hobbies and interests. Motivate her to grow and explore. 

I said it before, and I’ll say it again:

A single mother rarely gets time for herself. So what should you do?

Encourage her to make self-care a part of her regular routine. Remember, she needs to do this not because of selfishness but because it’s essential to maintaining her individuality.

She may initially resist this. Because again, her kids will always be her focus. But be persistent.

Someday, she’ll appreciate your support reminding her that she’s more than just a mother – she’s a beautifully complex individual deserving of love, growth, and fulfillment in all aspects of life.

Final thoughts

You may have gone through this article and interpreted the points as benefits of dating a single mother. But it could also be the other way around: You may have perceived the points as reasons why dating a single mom is a bad idea. 

At the end of the day, you’re the only one who can decide if dating a single mother is a good or a bad thing.

Do men care about dating single moms? I don’t know. Again, the answer to this is totally up to you – and the rest of the men out there.

So what do you think?

Can a relationship coach help you too?

If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to a relationship coach.

I know this from personal experience…

A few months ago, I reached out to Relationship Hero when I was going through a tough patch in my relationship. After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship and how to get it back on track.

If you haven’t heard of Relationship Hero before, it’s a site where highly trained relationship coaches help people through complicated and difficult love situations.

In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice for your situation.

I was blown away by how kind, empathetic, and genuinely helpful my coach was.

Click here to get started.

The above link will give you $50 off your first session - an exclusive offer for Love Connection readers.

Did you like our article? Like me on Facebook to see more articles like this in your feed.