Communication, Questions, Single Parent Dating

Single Mom Dating: When To Tell Him You Have Kids

51 Comments 05 December 2009

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By Simon Cole

It was our fourth date when Coleen popped the question. She was smart, funny, beautiful, and confident of her talents. We’d had a lot of fun hanging out and I, classy dude that I am, hadn’t pushed for anything physical… yet.

Coleen just had something about her that said, “don’t touch me quite yet” that I figured was a good idea to respect.

That changed when she slipped from her side of the table in the softly lit corner of the restaurant and scooted into the seat beside me. (Irish pub, booths, yep.)

I thought, “Yes! She’s finally over whatever is bothering her. Snog time!”

Instead, she leaned toward me, paused, and popped the question:

Would you freak out if I told you I had two kids?

I didn’t freak out. I don’t have a problem with kids and see no reason why a person should treat another poorly for having given birth.

The thing that bothered me was Coleen’s timing in waiting so long to tell me that she had two enormous commitments chilling with a babysitter at home.

I was annoyed that she hadn’t told me right away. When I asked her about the delay she said only that she hadn’t wanted to scare me away and that her friends had said I’d be cool with it if I really liked her.

I wasn’t interested.

Looking back, I wonder if I did the right thing? On what date should a single mom admit to having kids? Was Coleen right to wait so long to tell me about her kids?

I asked some friends for their input:

Seth said,

“She should tell him about her kids right around the same time she’d like him to tell her if he’s a registered sex offender.”

Emma said,

“I think she should tell him once she’s sure she likes him. It’s the difference between inviting somebody to a party in college and inviting them home for Thanksgiving. It’s important to get to know the guy a little bit before you spring potentially life-altering news on him.”

Amelia took some pot shots at Coleen’s garment choices (long story) before remarking,

“It seems like dating as a single mom would be something like dating when you’re HIV-positive. You know, you’ve got this thing that would scare most guys away but you’re hoping that you’ll somehow meet one who wants to be with you no matter what and will understand why you didn’t tell him sooner. It’s a big deal to have kids. You have to protect them while trying to be open to a new person. I think Coleen probably liked you a lot and perhaps that’s why she waited so long to tell you about her kids. I don’t know. I don’t have kids. That’s how I’d approach it if I did, I think. I’d wait, perhaps quite a few dates.”

Now I’m not sure what to think. If Seth was just being dramatic with his line about the sex offender (a real possibility) then it seems I may have been wrong in discounting Coleen for waiting to tell me about her kids.

What do you think? Ladies? How long do you think it’s okay for a single mom to wait before telling her date she’s got kids? Gents, how soon would you like to know if the lady you’re dating has done more than just test her baby maker?

If I was wrong (and it seems I may have been) I’m game for giving Coleen a call and apologizing for being an ape. Was I wrong?

Thanks for your input!


Image: Photogratree

When Should A Single Mom Tell Her Date She Has Kids?


- who has written 20 posts on The Dating Papers.

I like clothes that feel nice to wear, coffee without the bitter edge, granny smith apples, and making complex desserts. I like playing football in muddy fields, old pick-up trucks, and Belgian horses. I'd rather be alone than with somebody who is intentionally unkind. Details, I know... but we're all made of them. =)

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51 Comments so far

  1. I’m extremely inspired with your writing abilities as smartly as} with the structure to your weblog. Is that this a paid subject or did you customize it yourself? Either way stay up the nice quality writing, it is uncommon to look a great weblog like this one these days..

  2. Theresa says:

    OMG! I am actually deeply offended by some of the comments made about women with children. I believe equating it with being a sex offender or having HIV is horrible!! Is that really how we are viewed? One of the reasons I am exploring this issue is because I am a divorced mother of two wonderful kids and I am worried about how other single childless people “view” us. Unfortunately this only confirms or even increases my concerns that people view divorced women with children as “less than” single childless women. What if the woman is a completely wonderful person and a good personality fit for you? Having kids does not make me a less quality person… maybe it even makes me better quality. And if you are a man who won’t date a woman simply because she has kids – no matter how great they are – then you are not a man, you are a little boy.

    No in regards to the woman who waited until the 4th or 4th date – I do think that is too long. But I understand her insecurities. Although what she did was perhaps somewhat misleading maybe you should try to understand from her perspective why she did it. It seems to me that you had great chemistry with her and she operated in a way that her having kids was not apparent to you at all so she has things under control at home. It wasn’t interfering in any way and she wasn’t asking you to become their daddy. So ask yourself again if you really made the right decision.

  3. Ada says:

    Online Dating Tips : The best online dinatg site are a site you like so you just have to try some different sites to see whits one you like most and stay there.You can start to join one or to sites and see if it’s give you some results, it can be a local site or are international site.After some days i think you will get contact to some other singles, if you use the sites chat room you will get contact in very shot time.Distance don’t need to be a problem but don’t send money to a ticket to somebody you don’t don’t trust 100 % it’s better say don’t send money at all.Don’t drive nowhere before you have seen the people in live chat or something like this not all people on online dinatg sites are who they tell they are.You can of course also meet other singles on bar’s in the street and what ever you prefer, one nice thing whit online dinatg are you know something about the person before you meet them face to face so you can sort some of them out before and use energy on them you think can be a good match for you.Good luck to you.

  4. rate quite says:

    Thanks for sharing. What a pleasure to read!

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