If you’re a single parent, you’ve probably heard about our recent campaign to encourage single parents back into the dating game.
This is in light of over a third of single parents who we surveyed saying they haven’t been on a date in over a year. Even more surprisingly, 45% said they NEVER date.
Well, we have more exciting news! BBC TV presenter and documentary producer Cherry Healey has teamed up with Match to get the discussion going about single parent dating. Cherry herself is a single parent to two children, Coco (aged 8) and Edward (aged 4).
Cherry met up with fellow single parents Jake Lawrence, a 36 year-old old Balham resident whose two daughters live with their mum in Woking; Yvonne Evans, a 28 year-old from North London who has two daughters and thinks lots of men have the wrong impression about single mums; Jo Middleton, 40, who has two children, lives in Somerset and loves dating; and Jane Pettit, 40, an adventurous single mum to three who lives in Bawtry, North Yorkshire. Together, they offer an honest and candid account of dating when you have children.
The single parents discussed everything from their best and worst dates, to the dos and don’ts of dating, to the joys of being yourself even just for an evening, rather than “mum” or “dad”.
What are Cherry’s experiences?
Cherry met her partner on Match, having tried all the other dating sites. She says she’s really noticed the difference between dating when you’re younger and when you have kids. Having children limits the number of dates you can go on, meaning you need to be selective so you don’t waste time and money.
Cherry admits that she relied on family and friends for childcare when she was dating. She found it hard enough begging for favours – but on a few occasions her date cancelled last-minute, making her feel even more guilty. She says this can be disheartening and it’s important to know the person you’re talking to is serious.
Cherry’s four golden rules for dating as a single parent:
1. Don’t go on too many dates to avoid getting fatigued.
2. Get to know them a bit first before meeting. If their chat is bad online then it won’t be better face to face.
3. Meet somewhere convenient for you – don’t traipse to where they live and spend “date” time travelling as you have to pay for childcare and don’t have the luxury of time.
4. You don’t have to dress up if you don’t want to – although Cherry does love an excuse to dress up and if the date turns out to be crap, at least you still got to feel special.