Is dating selfish when you’re a parent?

Note: This was typed out as a rant one evening, as I struggled to find someone who would be able to watch T so I could go on a second date with D. Obviously I was feeling a lot of mom-guilt about what I was doing. I was going to post it as part of Pour Your Heart Out, but I thought it might be a little more relevant to schedule it to post today, Saturday, since I was actually able to find someone to watch T and will be going on a date tonight.

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Am I selfish for wanting to date?

Is it selfish to leave my son with a sitter (or his dad) a few times a month so I can go out?

I don’t know.

Is it selfish when you leave your kid(s) with a sitter so you can go out with your husband?

Is it selfish when you leave you kid(s) with a sitter so you can go out with your friends?

Of course not.

So why do I feel so guilty asking people to watch my kid so I can go on a date?

These people know and love me. I can’t imagine they are judging me negatively for wanting to have a social life outside of motherhood.

I’m not just a mother.

I am a woman.

And I like dating. I like meeting new people. Even though each date so far has made me so anxious I felt like literally vomiting, I had fun. Dating boosts my self esteem. I take that one evening to take a really long shower, do my hair, put on a little makeup, and wear something that makes me feel good about myself. I’m given a little ego boost just by the fact that this guy has asked to take me out, and then any compliment received is just a bonus.

I don’t need dating to make me feel good about myself, but it certainly helps.

I walk a little taller the day after my dates. I smile a little bit more.

Is it selfish for me to want that?

Maybe.

But I’m going to keep doing it.

Because when I became a mother, there were people who always told me how important it was to not forget to take care of myself. Why should I feel guilty about trying to do just that?

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