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Where to meet someone as a Single Parent

The biggest complaint of a single parent is usually about not knowing where to meet a potential date. Your life as a single mom or dad likely has you running around from work to school meetings, soccer games to ballet lessons, and everything in between, so finding the time to meet someone is probably not as easy as you wish it were. However, it is important to get back into the dating scene not just for yourself, but for your kids as well. Your children need to see you in a healthy, functioning relationship so that they can form their own desires and ideals for their future relationships.

So, the question remains: Where do you meet someone as a single parent? Dating as a single parent can be tricky, but you have to start out by finding the right person. To ease the intimidation factor and help you get the ball rolling, here are six places single parents can easily meet a potential dating partner.

1. Church

If you do not attend church, or if you do not have any spiritual or religious beliefs, then this one probably isn't for you. However, if you are a believer in something, then getting involved in your local church is a great way to meet others with the same beliefs and ideals that you have. The role of religion in dating plays a huge part for those that have solid belief systems, so don't be afraid to make that belief system a top priority when searching for the woman or man who will be involved in your and your child's life.

2. Speed Dating or Social Groups

Speed dating may sound unappealing initially, but if time is your biggest hindrance, then the ease and convenience of getting to meet multiple potential dates in one evening might be just what you're looking for. There are also social groups that coordinate planned outings so that you can meet others who are interested in the same activities as you are which gives a greater chance for compatibility. Both of these options are easy and fun and provide an atmosphere for dating free of stress.

3. Dating Websites

There are so many dating websites these days, and the options have expanded to include free online dating sites as well. Aside from the big names that you see advertised on commercials, there are many smaller dating sites that give the same amount of security and access to a large pool of potential dating partners. Dating websites are great for single parents, because you can search for exactly the man or woman you are looking for on your own time without accepting dates from complete strangers who probably are not what you're looking for.

4. Through Friends and Family

While it may feel uncomfortable at first, letting your friends and family set you up on dates could be the best way for you to find that perfect someone. Your friends and family know you better than anyone else, even better than you know yourself sometimes, so their perception of the right person for you may be right on the money. Plus, they will want only the best possible match for you, so you can be sure you won't be wasting any time on losers or someone who is not looking for a commitment.

5. Child Friendly Outings

You might be interested in finding a match that has kids of their own, so consider more outings to places that are kid friendly. Make more trips to the park, the zoo, museums and reading circles. You are taking your child there as a single parent, so the chances that you might meet another single parent there are high. You don't have to ditch your kiddo in order to meet someone; making your child a part of the process and letting them know the person you are dating right from the start can ease your child into the whole idea a lot more smoothly than if you kept your partner a secret.

6. Workplace Romance

Dating someone you work with does not have to be a bad thing. If you work full time, then you are spending a huge amount of time with the same people from week to week. Letting a romance bud out of this shared time and familiarity could lead to a lasting romance that started out naturally without any of the games we let ourselves play in more traditional dating scenarios. Single parent celebrities such as Reece Witherspoon and Jennifer Lopez have ended up dating men they worked with professionally, both of which resulted in long term, committed relationships.

The most important part of dating as a single parent is remembering to be open to new people and new ways of dating. You may discover that you already know the man or woman who is perfect for you, so no matter how you meet someone, don't let unrealistic expectations or tunnel vision discount the person who could be a great match and a wonderful co-parent.