Me: So I met a guy
Relative: Oh, how nice. Tell me about him.
[Proceeds to spill with wonder and excitement]
Relative: How wonderful? Does he know about the kids?
Me: Yes, he knows.
Relative: Has he met the kids?
Me: No, not yet.
Relative: Do you plan on introducing him to the kids?
Yada, yada, blah, blah, blah
For the life of me, I still cannot figure out why one might think you would attempt to hide the fact that you have children who live with you nine months out of the year from someone with whom you have the potential to become seriously involved.
But Okaaaay… Navigating life as a single parent has taught me a lot. Here’s what I’ve learned.
The Rules of Single Dating
Let me start by saying, there are NO RULES. Now that that’s out of the way, back to my story.
When I first became a single mother, I already knew that navigating sex would not be the easiest task. Along with the physical body changes came a full blown lifestyle change. Complete with a list of “single mother dating” rules to accompany. Rules like:
- Don’t bring too many different guys around your children.
- Wait awhile before introducing a new guy.
- Be careful of the things you do and say in regards to dating around your kids.
- Be careful of PDA in front of your children. (You don’t want it to become a situation of a new guy every month; it confuses the child *INSERT SARCASM HERE*)
- Bringing different men around your daughter presents the wrong ideals.
- Bringing different men around your son leaves an impression
I kinda went along even though I couldn’t decide whether these were good rules for me. After all, I don’t quite adhere to the hetero-normative narrative of society. My greatest dilemma became, so when do I get to have my time?
One Night Stands are Cool
As a single mother, I share a large chunk of my free time with my children. Besides when I am at work, where ever I am, so are my children.
As you may be able to imagine, single parenting can be extremely stressful. For me, sex is a huge stress release, and not being able to have regular sex can compound that stress and add frustration.
Sex became a ritual of sorts, occurring only a few times a year when I could get the kids to sleep early enough and have my guest out before they woke in the morning. These rituals turned into a full on sexual splurge when my children were away during the summer and winter breaks which contributed to how this blog was conceived, no pun intended.
I soon grew exhausted of this process and decided to reserve sex only for the breaks and sleepovers with my girlfriend.
This was still difficult because, it takes some time to find someone you desire to have sex with regularly all summer long after not being involved with anyone for the entire year. A game of Tinder swiping, random hook-ups, and dating uninterestedly so you don’t seem too hoe-ish cause all you’re really looking for is sex is like shopping for the perfect pair of shoes for a party you’d rather not attend; cause I love shoes like I love sex.
Excuse me while I toot my own horn, but I am a great lover (with lots of valuable experience) who absolutely loves sex in its many facilities. Sex for me is like the study of the person with whom I am engaged.
But I digress.
Be Sex Positive for Self-Care
In an effort to be sex positive and remain positive about a seemingly dire situation, I am more open with my children about my sexuality as a single mother. Do I sit around having conversations with them about myself as a sexual being? In fact, I certainly do.
Age appropriate and mostly with my nine year old prepubescent daughter. I want my children to understand that having a partner does not validate or invalidate your sexual desires as a human person.
I’ve learned through the ascension of my own mother that understanding your mother (and other persons) as a human being is more necessary than understanding or following the rules of society.
The decision to meet your own physiological needs is nothing to hide, or be ashamed of which we have been conditioned to believe about many physiological needs, especially sex. HELLO!!!! It’s called self-care.
I’ve learned of myself as a single mother that it’s unnecessary to take all these extra-exposural precautions (Yes, I did just make that word up and it seems absolutely appropriate for what I need to say so I’m going with it). In addition, I am certainly the type to be involved with individuals who are just friends. Blame the relationship anarchist in me.
So, how does that work? Do I then decide not to bring my friends around my children just because we’ve had sex?
I think not.
Sex With Friends Can (and does) Work
Although, there have been great debates online and abroad, I am a testament to the fact that sex with friends is absolutely and wonderfully possible. Some of my very best, most loyal friends are individuals with whom I have had some sort of sexual contact.
It has been my experience that sex, my kind of sex which I may speak on some other post, makes my friendships deeper and for me this make them better.
These are individuals who play an active role in my children’s lives. Some of these relationships have been cultivated over several seasons of my life. They were not meant to be a secret.
Cultivate Amazing Experiences
I can say that my participation in this little game of navigating single mother sex has brought forth a profound appreciation for the sex that I am able to have. I have become much more discerning about whom I have sex with and much more keen about cultivating the experiences I desire with precision and intention.
I find that I need sex, in general, a lot less than I need AMAZING, MIND BLOWING sex which is much more likely than it may have been had I not been selective due to single parent situation. It certainly takes you a lot further during times of drought. All things happen with purpose.
I’ve come to understand that simply having the opportunity to have sex is not always worth the efforts of having to create that opportunity; Paying a sitter, renting a hotel room, having to adhere to a schedule and not being able to sleep in to truly enjoy the experience. To have it only end up being a mediocre experience can be stressful in itself. It feels like such a waste of time that could have been spent well…writing which is never a wasted of time.
My theme for sex in the most recent two years has been the T.I. song, “I don’t want no mediocre.”