Not so very long ago, the idea of a mother of teenagers going out on a date was unheard of in the context of real life and good girls. You just simply didn’t do it, and if you did, nobody was supposed to know. Not that Aunt Martha and Grandma Suzzette weren’t discussing your immoral behavior at every family dinner between Easter and Christmas, but… you certainly didn’t tell anyone and you NEVER, EVER would have brought him home to meet the family until you were wearing a little gold band.
Well, things have changed.
Aunt Martha has better things to think about, “Is her depends full yet?” and Grandma Suzzette is too busy trying to keep herself out of the old folks home to worry about whether or not the single mommies in the family are dating. After all, Mr. Rogers is now in Room 212. You know he always had the hots for grandma. You know how unsupervised those dirty old men are at the nursing home.
So, now that ‘the Mr.’ isn’t around anymore and the kids are growing up, I’ve taken the liberty of visiting with a ‘good friend’ now and then. He’s not the sort of guy Grandma would probably approve of, although, he reminds me an awful lot of the way she talked about Granddad. Maybe there’s more salt in the old shaker than I suspected? The old friend is a rough version of the brother I always wanted but never had. A friendly sort of guy with promise, he’s educated, friendly, and when we either one need an escort to an event, advice from the other sector of homo-sapiens, or just a chat with someone who might understand that it isn’t necessary that we be FIXED in the process, we get together. He’s not the kind of guy I’d probably bring home for good, but he’s good for conversation, a little laughter, and a good bye at the front door.
The most recent receptor of my possible affection was a lawyer from a nearby town. We’ve both been around a few years, know the ropes, and we’ve been referred to as baby boomers. (ARGH I hate that term) Needless to say, he had more moves on him than carter has liver pills and I wasn’t in need of either one. He didn’t last long.
The next dude in running was a biker from Nova Scotia. Now, he had options… none of them mine. He left on the next tail wind of thunder.
After that there was an executive director of something or other, he dressed nice and had all the right things to say, but Mr. Right he was not. He found his way back to Tucson via burro and knapsack. I didn’t look back.
There have been a few dinner dates, and along the way, a few coffee drinking buddies, but as of yet, there’s nobody my kids need to screen, and nothing I’d call home about. Am I too picky? Perhaps. But there’s a lot at stake.
As a single mom, my responsibilities are to my children. I already screwed up once and gave them a biological father that wasn’t worth the salt we fed the mule he rode in on. His bait and switch routine left me with four kids to raise (not that I mind, they’re great kids) and a name to live down and improve upon (so long as my kids have the name, I will too). My children deserve better than to be saddled with the likes of him. Of course, there’s not much chance they’ll be saddled with him, he left seven years ago and hasn’t seen them since. Nor does he pay child support. But that’s another matter altogether. To call him a deadbeat dad would be giving him credit for being a dad. He’s never been that.
So, given that in order to remarry, or to find the best kind of husband, he’d have to be father material, willing to participate in family life, and capable of loving not just me but my kids too. The options narrow. Add into the mix that he may have children as well, and life gets complicated.
Dating? Yes, I’ll go to dinner and enjoy the company, and if you’re really interested in meeting the family, being part of a family, and perhaps down the road a bit becoming involved in a family – as I would be involved in your family, sure. Call me. I’d love to hear from you. Maybe dinner will turn into an afternoon picnic, or a day at the beach of a local lake. But honestly, I’m not interested in the beaches of the world, riding the winds of thunder to Alaska, or even living the nightlife as a Way-of-Life. I’m more interested in being a wife, a mom, and a grandmom to one special man who wants to be a husband, a dad, and a granddad.
Dating and the Single Mom brings new meaning to the concept of creating and building a relationship. Now, there’s more to dinner than who picks up the tab, and the real deal isn’t what happens after the first date, but rather what happens when he realizes I have a family of kids I absolutely adore?
Parenting has a lot to do with dating these days… So who’s going out with Mom isn’t the question so often, as “Where are you going and with whom?” The best part is, I’ve had the pleasure of double dating a time or two with people whose company I truly enjoy.