Today we see all sorts of single parent families: headed by mothers, headed by fathers, headed by a grandparent raising their grandchildren.
Swap childcare with friends so you can have time for yourself or work late. Friends are also honest bogus detectors when it's time for a potential boyfriend to pass the test.
For more advice on navigating the single parent scene, visit our Interview Series: 6 Tips for Dating as a Single Parent » The Community is an advice-sharing network for caregivers.
If the adolescent has anxiety about safe dating, there can be worries on that score for the dating parent as well.
If the adolescent is shy about being physically demonstrative it can be uncomfortable to see the parent acting in an affectionate way with a dating partner.
The single parent can help family members face these difficulties by talking with each other about their feelings and working together to tackle problems.
Support from friends, other family members and the church or synagogue can help too.
Total focus on the children can deny the single parent dating companionship; create more dependency on love from children; and perhaps cause an increased sense of loss when it is time to let grown children go. One is making a compromise about attention and the second is making a distinction about love.
Total focus on a dating companion can deny children of needed parental attention, cause actual neglect, and foster feelings in children of emotional abandonment. The compromise between balancing needs for adult companionship and parental responsibility requires understanding that between the extremes of total absorption with children and total social preoccupation with another adult is a middle way.
And typically, the family's finances and resources are drastically reduced following the parents' breakup.
Single parent families deal with many other pressures and potential problem areas that the nuclear family does not have to face.
If he's supporting you when your baby spikes a fever in the middle of the night, it's a good preview to see how he responds in the midst of such reality. Watch for Red Flags You know what the red flags are: a guy who wants to know your whereabouts every minute of the day, someone who brings up marriage too soon, someone who has as an unsettled divorce or high unpaid debts, or someone with a quick temper. Before you know it, you'll develop this "single mom radar." Amazingly, you'll naturally start to spot other single moms at the park.