Love: Single Mom Style

Guest Blogger-Cindy Skaggs

Hi all! I’m Charly, Rebecca’s assistant. We thought it’d be fun to do a ‘Romance: The Good, the Bad, and the Disastrous’ theme with guest bloggers throughout the summer months. Every Monday and Thursday, we’ll have a guest blogger talk about fun stuff like horrible dates, good dates, etc. Some bloggers will have a contest, and some won’t – it’s totally up to them. If there is a contest, I’ll randomly draw a winner from the post comments, send the winner’s email address to the guest blogger, and they’ll take it from there. Rebecca will jump in and blog when she can. For now, enjoy as we play!

CindyBerthoud closeupDating when you have children is like having an overprotective older brother.  A friend of mine had her son (aged 9) stare down a man at the pool for daring to look at his mom.  I could see the writing on the wall with my son. He had a significant laundry list of “musts” for a potential step-dad.

The top three items on my son’s list were that the man play basketball, be independently wealthy, and have children, hopefully a boy my son’s age.  My daughter’s list included the idea that a potential mate not have children.

As a consequence, when my kids were younger, I never let them know I was dating.  They’d get a bonus trip to Parents Night Out, and think it was all for their enjoyment, so I could “sneak out” on a date.

The older they get, however, the harder it is to “sneak out.”  Surprisingly, many men embrace the midday while-the-kids-are-in-school date because it’s low pressure.  Equally surprising are how many times my children bought the lie that I was meeting friends for coffee.  How much coffee do they think I drink?

But no matter how many times you meet for coffee or a late lunch, sooner or later you find yourself with the dreaded Saturday night date.  Once you have kids, Saturday night requires some logistical maneuvers.

At 13 and 15, the kids are too old for Parents Night Out.  They have to be fed, and possibly bribed to behave (pizza acts as both food and bribe).  Plus there’s the fact that I haven’t told them I’m dating again.

My daughter figured things out pretty quickly, and her only concern was that I still have time for her.  That’s an easy thing to promise.  My son, however, was a different challenge.  He’s protective in the extreme and has been known to get abrasive and verbally abusive to boys who get too close to my daughter (a habit I may or may not encourage).  What would he think about me dating?

“So,” I say across the kitchen as I put away the dishes.  “I have a date tonight.”

The third degree begins:  what does he do, how many kids does he have, does he have pets, how did we meet.  This inquisition continues long after the dishes are put away and the dishwasher reloaded.  I answer them all and lean against the counter facing my son.

“That’s fine,” he finally says, “as long as he treats you right.”

Aw, how can I not love this kid?  But before I get too happy, my son wags his finger at me.  “But I get to meet him after three dates.”

I smile and think to myself, not going to happen.  My friend Dan’s rule is that he has to be in a monogamous relationship for six months before he introduces a love interest to his daughter.  I’m not sure I’d go with six months, but three dates is too soon.  I’m sure there’s a happy middle ground.

Any single parents out there?  How soon do you let your kids meet your date?


When they told her a woman could do anything, she thought they said everything, and decided to give it a go.  Cindy holds an MA in Creative Writing, is an MFA student, a single mom, pet owner, child chauffer extraordinaire, and works three jobs on the side.  When she’s not writing, she’s trying to prevent the neurotic dog from either chewing the furniture or eating whole sticks of butter (often still in the paper).  She’s beginning to think maybe she can’t do it all.  At least not all at once.  You can contact her on her website:


“He stared at her like she was chocolate and tomorrow was the first day of Lent. Sure, she might be forbidden, but no one could withstand temptation forever.”

~Excerpt from UNTOUCHABLE



She’ll do whatever it takes to find her son – Lie. Cheat. Steal. Seduce…

As the former wife of an infamous crime boss, Sofia Capri is untouchable. She exists outside of the law…and outside of the criminal world. When her son is kidnapped, Sofia’s desperate to find him. She’ll do anything. Lie. Cheat. Steal. Anything but trust. But it’s a strikingly handsome FBI agent who’s her only chance to get her baby back…

Something about Sofia’s fiery beauty must be hitting all of his weak spots, because suddenly Mr. Law And Order Logan Stone finds himself bending the rules. When they’re implicated in the kidnapping, Logan and Sofia discover they have less than 72 hours to find the boy and clear their names.

Now the heat is turning up…and time is running out…for everyone.

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Cindy doing a blanket giveaway through rafflecopter for all her release activities.
Click here to access the Rafflecopter giveaway

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