I’ve been a Single Mother by Choice (SMC) for almost 10 years now. Here is my story.
When my daughter (via DI) was a baby I had little time or interest in dating. I was loving motherhood, but motherhood and working full time took all my energy. There were many times that I was grateful that I didn’t have to put any energy into a relationship because I didn’t think I could have managed.
When she got to be a toddler and I began to get out of the house occasionally without her I began to think about dating and had a profile up on Match.com. The first thing I noticed is that I got hardly any interest compared to the profile I had up before becoming an SMC. I was now 37-38 yrs old.
About that same time I had a few dates with a HS classmate and we really liked each other but he lived long distance and was not interested in a long distance relationship. The dry spell continued…
When my daughter was 5.5 yrs I moved from NYC to suburban NJ. Later that year a friend set me up on a date with a widower who had a 9 year old daughter. We e-mailed and talked awhile and eventually met for dinner. I was the first person he had really liked since his wife died and he wasn’t ready to do anything.
Now I was in my 40’s… More dry spell… not really even trying to date. I had pretty much given up. I was in the process of adopting my 2nd daughter. I figured that my prospects were dim anyway so why not go ahead and grow my family.
Last summer when my youngest had been with me almost a year we made a trip out to the mid-west to see her birth parents and the cousin that introduced us. While there I met my college sweetheart for dinner with the kids. It was the first time we’d seen each other in 22 years. We were trying to catch up on the last 20+ years but as you might imagine it was nearly impossible with the kids interrupting every few minutes. As I was leaving he told me that he was going through a divorce. I asked him to call me after the kids were in bed so that I could talk uninterrupted. When we talked we discovered that we both still cared about each other and began dating long distance and it is going well.
I remember telling him that I was no prize because I had 2 kids, 2 parents (living next door), 2 dogs, 2 cats and an old house to care for. I said, “what man wants all that!” His reply was that “a good man would want all that.”
So I went from having no hope that I would ever marry (or even date regularly) to a relationship with the one man I regretted not marrying 20+ years ago. I feel really lucky and somewhat foolish that I had ever lost my hope in the first place. But I’m glad that I found it again.