Sex And The Single Mom. There’s a favorite movie of mine “Sex and the Single Girl” where Natalie Wood plays a psychologist who ends up falling in love with a journalist who tries to set her up as being a fraud as a relationship expert. The movie is hilarious in that it depicts marriage and relationship issues in a style of humor involving exaggerated physical activity which exceeds the boundaries of common sense. I want to talk about my dating experiences as a single mom hoping it can prevent some unhappy circumstances and help develop some proactive steps in getting what you want in your relationships. As single moms you want to role model appropriate behavior so your children know what to expect and know what to do in similar situations.
I was 33 years old when I re-entered the singles market. With the exception of one breakup that lasted 6 months in 1979 from my then boyfriend turned husband, I had a total of 4 dates at the young age of 21 years old. On-line dating didn’t exist back in 1991 when I became a divorcee. The first year was a year filled with “hook ups” with men I knew from when I was married as I had always been attracted to them in some way or another. Being in a single relationship for 16 years I only knew people through my husband, his colleagues. Didn’t matter if they were married or not. So naturally when I became single I was fresh meat. I was not in a good place at that period of time. I came from a place where I felt I was meeting everybody else’s needs and neglected mine for so many years I decided I was going to date whoever I wanted to at the time and do whatever it was I wanted to do. I know, not good, not appropriate. I realize this now and am in a better position to where I am able to help others undergoing similar situations.
I grew up in a family where dating/having sex with more than a couple of guys in one lifetime made for immoral conduct. I recall my father saying my behavior was indicative of a person who made a living working off men. I was stunned by the comment as they were just “dates.” You could imagine how this affected my self-esteem as I was trying to recover from a divorce and reinvent myself.
I enrolled in Graduate School and earned a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology. I learned from my dating relationships, albeit not all good experiences, and moved toward becoming a licensed clinician in the field of Marriage and Family Therapy.
These relationships have helped me become the skilled therapist I have evolved into as my personal experiences have provided insight for many of my male and female clients and help move them into more workable relationships. I have been hurt and know what it feels like to be dumped by a partner. I also know what bad behavior looks like from a partner. I know relationships don’t just happen. You have to acquire the skills to know how to be in one.
Single moms should keep in mind that their children come before any love interest and their relationships shouldn’t interfere in their ability to have access to you. Don’t make adjustments for your love interests especially if it makes your children feel like they are being made to feel like they are secondary in your life. Before you go falling into the sunset with your new love interest make sure your children are being psychologically, emotionally, as well as physically cared for.
If you need help with balancing your love life and parenting please give me a call at (858) 735-1139.