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When you’re a parent, it may be tough to muster up the confidence you need to embark on a dating venture. No doubt, there is quite the choking stigma surrounding the statuses of single parents, which may impede their courage to get on out there and find love.

Just remember this: parenthood is something to be celebrated, not hidden, and the right person will also be able recognize this. Below are some tips to note if you’re a single parent looking to date:

Be frank about the fact that you’re a parent

Honesty, whether on dating profiles or during actual dates, prevents detrimental misunderstandings from cropping up in the long run. Anyone who would nurse a potential problem with your status as a parent will likely not be worth it in the long run.

Never apologize or defend yourself

Often, a single parent may feel instinctively compelled to explain how they came to be one in the early stages of dating. The reality, however, is that you owe no one such an explanation. Be as proud of your family, and especially your kid, as you would in their sole company.

Take the word ‘baggage’, and replace it with ‘bonus’

‘Baggage’ evokes a sense of a disadvantage: bulky, troublesome, and maybe even extra.

Your child should be anything but.

And we know it can be tough to remember that—in a society that views single motherhood as an appalling sentence to a lifetime’s loneliness.

But having a child can help you put things into perspective. See your cherished tot for who they are, and—above anything—embrace their role in your life with unbridled positivity. Adopting the ‘bonus’ mentality will make your life exceedingly happier, and keep your relationship with your child merrily thriving.

Focus on the present

You’ll find your thoughts flashing to the future on a seasoned instinct—and it’s no wonder, consider your life situation as parent. But, just as ordinary singletons take it slow, so should you.

Overall, having a child will be the best indicator of whether or not your partner will be worth your time in the long run.

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