We recently had the chance to celebrate Father’s Day — and man, oh, man, did dads everywhere deserve it. Hopefully, all the fathers in your life got the kingly treatment: the perfect gift for the perfect Pops, the chance to take a well-deserved nap (what dad out there doesn’t relish any opportunity for a snooze?), and even a snazzy (but manly) beertail with his number one kid (you, duh). But what about the dads out there who are looking for that “special someone” to fill the gaps that even the most fab daughter can’t? Whether you have a dad who’s out there seeking an S.O. online or you’ve considered dating a proud father who you matched with on your app of choice, you may have wondered what the search for love actually looks like for single dads out there. We’re here to give you the inside scoop.
eHarmony recently researched one million active users in the US, approximately 21 percent of whom called themselves single dads. These fathers have an average of two children and tend to be significantly older than their childless counterparts (single dads, on average, are 45 years old, while non-dads on the site average 38 years old).
Although single dads don’t seem to be any more proactive about reaching out to their matches than men without children, eHarmony’s data suggests that other love seekers find something especially attractive about them. On average, men with kids receive 28 percent more messages from other singles than non-dads do! Given the fact that more than 76 percent of women on eHarmony say they would be willing to date a single man with children, this is hardly surprising, but the numbers are certainly promising for the romantically inclined fathers out there.
“Single dads bring a lot to the table,” eHarmony CEO Grant Langston told us. “They have a certain maturity level that comes with the responsibility of raising children. There’s no time for games, which is a good thing!”
Beyond the maturity factor, though, Langston attributes the online dating community’s openness to dating single dads (and single parents in general) to the basic facts of life and love. “The reality of dating, especially as we all get older, is that many people out there are going to have children,” he says. “Single parents have a lot to offer. They can be really amazing partners, and they prove in advance that they are caring individuals.”
If you’re among the more than three-quarters of surveyed singles who would be willing to welcome a tribe of kiddos into your life along with a new significant other, Langston encourages you to respect the chaos that comes with being a single parent — and to keep in mind that the kids will always be the top priority. “If you understand that their children come first, you will be in good shape,” he advises. “Know that it will take some time before you will likely meet a partner’s child or children.”
And to the dads out there looking for love in the digital age, Langston recommends one thing: balance. “The biggest challenge is balancing it all — work life, social life, and being a single parent,” he says. “As long as you have your priorities clear, it just takes some coordination to figure it all out. Taking things slow — single parent or not — is always a smart way to go as you get to know someone new.”
Thanks to all those dads out there working to balance their ambitions for love with the many amazing things they do for their children every day. We’re pulling for you, and for what it’s worth, the numbers seem to be in your favor!
If you’re a single parent dating online, we’d love to hear more about your experiences! Tweet us @BritandCo.
(Photo via Getty)