I am taking tentative steps into the world of dating. Not serious steps, not planning any relationships, but I have agreed to get a cup of coffee. I have also enjoyed a lot of flirting and a lot of laughs.
It’s a scary world but it’s actually not as bad as I thought it would be. I had imagined that the whole single mum thing would put people off. Of course, it definitely puts some people off and that’s fine, but not as many as you would think.
Mostly I am just enjoying flirting. It’s so much fun. To joke and laugh and flirt with attractive men who joke and laugh and flirt with me. Nothing more, nothing less. But so much fun, and a nice way of dipping my toes back in. Because I do want to, because I enjoy it.
The question of whether flirting and joking with men is appropriate has recently come up, and the suggestion that because I do it a lot I am being inappropriate and slutty. And that it is perhaps inappropriate for a mum to be doing.
Sadly I suspect that some people do make judgments like that. Because the world hasn’t fully moved on from the idea that if a woman smiles at a man then she’s inviting sex. And the idea that if a woman does have sex with a man then she’s a slut. I know some people think that, but some people think a lot of things. And I don’t actually think that matters.
People make judgements about me being a single mum. When you hear “single mum” you don’t hear “fell in love, got married, created a much wanted child, felt the agony of betrayal and heart ache, decided to move on with her life”. You just hear single mum. Every single mum comes with a story, and I don’t believe any story comes without an element of pain. But we are all negatively judged by some.
People make judgements about single mums, and flirty women, so putting your hands together and being a flirt single mum means obviously you’re inviting judgement.
But, in my opinion, it doesn’t matter. Because the people who are going to judge me like that are people who’s opinions are irrelevant to me. Because I have reached a point in my life where I am not interested in pleasing everyone or living up to other peoples expectations or standards. The people who’s opinions matter to me don’t think like that. It makes life so much easier.
So that’s what I am doing. I am exploring. Seeing what’s out there. Seeing who’s interested. Seeing if I can have some fun with someone awesome and not wondering about what it means or where it’s going. Because having fun is all I want right now. And fun for the sake of fun is not something to be sniffed at.