Tell Me About It: Single mom's priorities are all wrong

Posted: September 28, 2012

Question: I am 36 and a soon-to-be-single mom of two daughters. I am having a difficult time with friends and family telling me I should not and won't be able to start over. I think I am relatively good-looking, and look young for my age. I do, however, have a few extra pounds.

I know my age and less-than-perfect body will make it difficult. I really don't want to end up alone for the rest of my years. Are guys really that tough on single moms? Please help a lonely woman start over and realize what life is really like out there!

Answer: "Out there" will just be more of the same, if all you care about is not looking old and not being alone.

You are the mother of and primary influence on two children - girls, no less. Do you want them to tend to their clothes and bodies and dating mechanics, then consign the rest to hope? The palpably desperate hope that men will save them from being alone?

Or, do you want them to tend to their minds, character, interests, senses of self, and physical and emotional hygiene, and to feel empowered to make good choices from there?

If you want the latter, then you need to teach your girls by living that way yourself. And that means a long look at who you are, then some perspective changes:

Make choices that fill in the blank in this sentence: "I will ---- because it is the best I can do for me and my kids." And, throw away this sentence: "I will ---- because that's what guys look for and I don't want to end up alone."

Know and stick to your priorities. First, list them then place them where they can nag you whenever you're tempted to grab some immediate gratification.

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