As an only child and a child that grew up without a father; in my household there were somethings that just weren’t allowed. I know you’re probably thinking I’m talking about the things I could do, but no I’m speaking of the choices and decisions my mother made as a mom. While growing up my mother was a protector, which is very expected being the strong single mother of a daughter.
She made sure she kept her personal life and our life as mother and daughter separate.
For years I thought my mother didn’t like men, because I never really saw her around any unless they were my uncle, godfather and of course my play uncles. It wasn’t until my mother was really serious about a man, and when I say serious I mean serious, that I would meet them. So outside of my dad, who I met at the age of 13, I only knew of 2 men in my mothers life.
So when I became a mother I vowed that my child wouldn’t be around anyone unless we were building and growing. Though Grayson’s dad and I aren’t together, we sat down and had a talk about our wants for our child. Of course having different mindsets on life, we had different opinions on the matter. I am a firm believer that children shouldn’t be around someone that their parent doesn’t plan on spending the rest of their lives with. Where as though his father believed as long as he could trust someone it was okay for that child to be present around the person they date.
I feel as though this is an issue that a lot of us single mothers go through, especially if the child’s father is active in their life as well. As a parent you want to protect your child at all cost, and give them the life that they deserve. Stability is one of the best presents you can give to your child! Not just a stable home, but a stable family! It’s important to only bring someone in the picture when you are sure, because you don’t want your child to love someone only for them to leave.
I ran a small poll with people who were raised by single parents, and asked them exactly how they felt about their parents dating:
Person A (24 years old Female): “I wouldn’t say it really affected me negatively, because at a very young I was made aware that mommy & daddy will not be together. But I also knew when it was serious and when it wasn’t.”
Person B ( 47 year old Male) “From a very young age my mother was public about anyone she dated. They were around us, but we recognized them as “uncle”. There was one who was a serious part of our lives. It even got as far as my mother and my siblings and I moving in with him. We looked up to him as a father figure, even called him “Daddy”. Unfortunately he passed away, and that was very hard to process. It was literally like losing a parent. As I got older I didn’t exactly like the approach that was taken so I made sure to bring a child in a stable home after a strong marriage has been established.”
Person C ( 23 year old Female) “The only person my mother introduced me to was my now step-father, and that was only because he introduced himself! Being a single mother now, I understand why she did so because I wouldn’t want my child around any and everyone.”
Person D (21 year old Female) “From childhood, I’ve always had this feeling that nobody stays. Nobody cares, and nobody will make me a priority...Each time my mom was left, broken up with or ignored I felt that with her. I watched each friend and boyfriend leave sometimes for no reason other than they just didn’t feel like sticking around anymore. ”
As you can see everyone of these people grew up affected a different way. So the true question is “How do I conduct my own love life, freely and comfortably, without psychologically harming my child?'' Mommy Village I do not have that answer for you at all. That all depends on you, but I think the biggest thing is COMMUNICATION with your child. It’s important to let your child know that Mommy and Daddy are no more and mommy will be dating.
It won’t be easy and I can’t make the right decision for you, but you can.