Dating hadn’t even crossed my mind ever since I was a carefree young adult. ‘A single working mother with two adorable but feisty kids’ is enough to answer the question; ‘why’. But one day, sitting on the couch sipping wine while the kids were at a birthday party, I found myself searching dating apps for single parents. Single parents often give up on dating thinking it’s going to be impossible to find someone who is a perfect balance of a partner and your child’s friend.
Parenthood leaves no time for yourself; snack time is sneaking a cookie into the laundry room and naps are a rarity. However, an upside of these smartphones that are probably rotting my kids’ brains, is the easy availability of a thousand different dating apps and sites. For those, like me, who are looking to change their current relationship status, which is sleeping diagonally across the queen-sized bed, here are some apps and sites that you should definitely try.
Guest post courtesy of Mary Gibson
1. Single Parent Love
This is a premium service aiming to match up single parents across the world. People who are looking for a long-term or serious relationship can easily find someone at this site. You simply create a profile, add photos and start communicating.
And so I did. It felt good, not having to mention that I was a parent. The results were mediocre at best. The biggest advantage is that it’s free. With the option of choosing when and how frequently I could get emails, I set it on ‘Never’ and my inbox was free from oversaturation.
You can upgrade to a three month free trial of the platinum membership by just uploading a photo. What’s more? You can find matches locally as well as internationally.
With thousands of profiles, this site claims to provide a fun, safe and uniquely single parent dating experience. Single Parent Love also admits members who may not be parents but are welcoming to dating single parents.
Everyone’s heard of this website. With a free basic membership, eHarmony connects individuals searching for meaningful, deep-rooted relationships. It includes a four-step process which helps to find the right match.
A detailed and extensive questionnaire regarding many characteristics and criteria had to be filled in. It took me about twenty minutes and then the algorithm sets out to find matches accordingly. Though this site is not specifically created for single parents, the option to emphasize the same makes it easier. You get to view whether a potential match has children and/or wishes to have more.
Also, the app made it simpler to continue conversations and scroll through prospective matches. With traits and qualities matched through a scientific process, I found that the matches were far better at eHarmony.
There is a free version of this site and app along with upgrades with add-ons. I found this one to be highly interactive. It features a lot of user-generated questions that allow you to really get to know a potential match.
I went on the mission to read a match’s responses to these questions and tallying them up to my own answers. You can really tell a lot about a person through these questions!
OkCupid has the option of mentioning whether you have children and helped me filter matches. They insist that their one-of-a-kind algorithm matches you on what actually matters. With over 94 million connections made every year, OkCupid was definitely on top of my list.
Thought Tinder is a very popular site for hookups, but it does have people looking for long-term relationships. So when I did turn to this oh-so-popular dating app, I knew what to expect. Tinder is simple and easy; swipe left if you don’t like the person and right if you do.
The photos can be a bit too much, but I knew that it’s the bio that counts. It is brief and to the point. Tinder has gone mainstream and a lot of people rely on it to find a partners interested in long-term relationships.
Though it doesn’t have a profile with boxes that needs to be filled, I did mention that I am a single mother. What I can say with certainty is that it was a lot of fun. The option of unmatching when I found a guy boring means brownie point for me. I connected with a couple of single dads and even went on a date. Overall, I would totally recommend Tinder.
This was suggested by my niece who has recently stepped into the dating world. Relatively new, Happn is focused on hyper-locality. You create an account, link it to Facebook and the GPS helps in curating a list of potential matches based on your location.
It has a few unique in-app features that enable you to proclaim an activity like watching the game at a certain bar or having a meal at your favorite restaurant, which can encourage others to join you.
I thought it was a little creepy and stuck to the norm. What made me delete the app is the realization that the location feature is a little too invasive.
Bumble places the power dating into the hands of women. If you are done with cheesy pick-up lines, unwanted disgusting pictures and stalkers, Bumble is your best option. Since the men on this site are comfortable with women being in charge, there is a better quality of matches. Women get the exclusive privilege of commencing talks.
The app is free, easy and fun with a plausible upgrade plan. After linking up my Facebook profile, the app suggested a variety of potential mates. With a time limit for each match, I made sure to check it frequently and initiate conversations with the ones that struck my fancy.
It was a great deal to actually make some time and get out into the world. The excitement of meeting someone new, a first date and a potential future as a woman, just a woman, was enough to boost my confidence. The fact that I took the decision to start dating was a healthy, positive sign.
As a single parent, dating can mean feelings of guilt, anxiety, and even shame. For any solo parent making a comeback into the dating, it’s common to feel nervous about striking up a new romance. With a history, single parents are afraid to get hurt or unsure of figuring out internet dating.
Yes, dating as a parent can seem daunting and challenging. But remember, dating is about meeting new people, learning about yourself, your tastes and needs at this time of your life.
It is okay to take your time and go slow about it. Indulge in a little self-love, click some new pictures and prioritize on creating a good profile. The internet is just a medium and the point is to try different things while having fun!