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14 Reasons Men Don’t Want to Date Single Moms

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For many single moms, one of the biggest questions is when to reveal that they’re single mothers to potential suitors. According to a survey, around half of their suitors won’t stay after they reveal they have kids. And the big question is, why?

Being a single mom complicates matters a lot in the dating scene. Many single mothers trying to date have to contend with the complexities of introducing a [new] partner into their kids’ lives and how the child fits into the relationship.

Netizens (mostly single men themselves) discuss why some men might avoid dating single moms and why.

1. Their Own Experiences as Kids

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One man who was raised by a single mom says he avoids dating single moms to avoid having attachments to a child and then possibly breaking their hearts, as he had his broken. With this kind of trauma in his own childhood, it makes sense that he’s been hesitant to do this in adulthood- and you can bet he isn’t the only child to ever experience this.

He shares, “I got attached to a few men my mom dated when I was a child. Then they’re gone. I don’t wanna do that to anyone.”

2. Fear of Ex-Partners

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Dating someone who has an eternal connection with an ex because of a child is scary for some men, especially if the ex brings drama to the relationship. Crazy baby daddies are a huge turn-off for many men.

One says, “Nah… I don’t want to deal with ex-partners still being involved.”

Many single parents do well co-parenting. Thus, it’s worth discussing the involvement of an ex-partner with someone you’re considering dating. It doesn’t have to be all drama.

3. To Avoid Hurting The Kids

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If a relationship doesn’t work out, there will be more people who will get hurt, especially if the biological fathers aren’t present or good people. Many men avoid a situation where they’ll have to break up with both the mother and the child, especially if it has happened before.

It can be heartbreaking for all parties involved in a relationship when it doesn’t work out. The fact that a man is concerned about this is a sign they are empathetic but not willing to risk it.

4. Different Life Stages

Strict father talking to daughter in kitchen
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Starting a relationship with someone who already has a child means you’re operating at different stages of life. Some men do not want to enter a union where they may feel out-of-depth since they don’t have parenting experience.

Since most single women would expect a serious partner to be involved in their children’s lives (up to 70%), it can be too much for some men who aren’t ready to take on that level of responsibility.

5. They Don’t Want to Be Instant Parents

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While some men might be okay with the idea of parenting, they are apprehensive about getting started without any experience. Some men feel like dating a single mom thrusts them into the parenting role with no preparation whatsoever, and they are wary.

One user says, “The issue with her [the single mom] was she had moved to my area with no real support system. So I often found myself thrust into a parental role from the get-go, which I don’t think was exactly fair.”

6. No Playing Replacement Dad

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Some men feel that dating a woman who has a child means they have to play replacement dad, and that is something they’re not open to do [or be].

One man says, “[I] Don’t want kids so [I] don’t want to be someone’s replacement dad.”

Single moms should probably steer clear of men who don’t want kids anyways, so this is good information to know.

7. Fear of Emotional Imbalance

Upset young parents and their daughter outside their home
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For some men, the fact that the baby preceded the relationship is a major setback. They feel that the baby will always come first, and the man will always come second emotionally, and they may not be able [or willing] to compete with that.

For some men, they don’t want to have to compete for attention with a woman’s child, making single mom a less than ideal option for them.

8. The Kids See You as An Enemy

Little girl is angry with her father
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Some kids have big dreams (albeit daydreams) that their parents will realize they were wrong for splitting and will get back together. When a single parent is looking to date, to some kids, this means the chance for their parents to get back together gets slimmer.

They may be hostile to the incoming partner as he or she is the reason for the slimming chances. Or they may also be hostile to someone invading their space, which is understandable.

9. Fear of Not Bonding With The Kids

Father and daughter play on the floor at home
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While some people are scared of bonding with children and then breaking their hearts, some men are worried they will not be able to love another man’s kid as they’d be expected to.

One commenter says, “I was basically friends with the kid like “hey buddy!”, and aside from that I could not bring myself to feel a sense of attachment or affection for the kid as if she was my own. It’s not that I refused to, it’s just that I couldn’t develop those types of feelings no matter how much I tried.”

10. They Don’t Want Children

Stressed father sitting on floor and kids playing around in room
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Some men have already decided that they do not want kids, and they’re therefore not ready to raise any child—theirs or someone else’s. Being a single mom is already a deal breaker for them.

One shares, “I’m not interested in having a child of my own; I’m definitely not interested in someone else’s child. There is too much baggage, I live my life fast and loose and want a partner who can also live that way.”

These types of men are not what a single mom needs anyway.

11. Life Gets Too Complicated

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Some men want to run away as fast as possible when life gets complicated or messy. There’s no denying that adding kids to a relationship will make it more complicated. For some men, this added complexity isn’t worth it to them.

They don’t want to navigate school picks ups, babysitters, date night, and the cleaning up messes that come with kids. Any parent can agree kids make life quite messy and busy (yet beautiful, most of the time).

12. Dealing with Ex In-laws

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While dealing with a single mom’s ex-partner is one thing, the in-laws will likely be involved, too (grandparents will likely want to see their grandkids). This just adds to the baggage a new suitor would have to deal with.

One man shares that he’s had a bad experience with a woman’s crazy in-laws who always interfered with everything. It was too much, and he never wanted to deal with it again.

13. Bad Past Experiences

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Our past experiences shape how we feel about our future choices. Some men were once open to dating single women but had terrible drama or breakups that left a bad taste in their mouths. Now, they are no longer open to dating single moms of any kind anymore.

Of course, not all single moms are the same, just like no two people are the same. So they might change their mind in the future for the right partner. However, in the meantime, it’s not surprising that past experiences have them leary.

14. Fear of Being Used

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A single mom may be looking for extra stability in her life (who wouldn’t?). A dependable man with a house and a good job can sound like heaven. And some men are worried that a mom might just “pretend” to like them to get all the perks of their life.

Men don’t want to feel used for their money, stable jobs, good manners, or great homes- and that’s fair.


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The conclusion of a relationship frequently leaves a wake of broken hearts, tears, and lasting remorse. In the aftermath, it’s customary to ponder what could have been altered to salvage the situation. Occasionally, we look back and discover gratitude for having moved forward, even wondering why we didn’t make that choice earlier.

12 Crazy Exes That Have People Thanking Their Lucky Stars They Got Out

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How do you make time for each other when some little hands, feet, and stuffed noses constantly need you? It’s time to get creative.

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