Single mothers have the pressure of raising amazing children, being fabulous mothers, and providing their children the family they deserve. The problem with that last one is that we often times act on desperation to find the man who will complete that family. When we’re desperate, we settle instead of expecting what we are worthy of.

Oftentimes, our vision for the future blinds us from what is actually standing in front of us. We have high hopes for what could be instead of discerning that it could never happen with the type of men we continue to choose. We’re settling, and we don’t even see it. Here are the types we settle for:

The man who is nice to our kids.
You’ve introduced him to your kids because you have talked yourself into a future with him. He plays with them, spends time with them, and gives them the attention you’ve been searching for. However, when the kids are in bed, his attentiveness and the quality of his time diminish. He knows how to play nice with your kids because their requirements are simple, but he has no clue what to do with you because you are so complex. You expect him to do more than just show you attention. Any man can do that. You want and deserve a man who shows you unconditional, complete love. Don’t settle for the man who is good for your kids but not you.

The man who acts like he’s doing us a favor
He looks at you like a charity case. He doesn’t see your worth but instead views you as someone who other men would pass up on, because you have kids, and no one wants a woman with that burden, right? As a result of this his actions are sub par because he actually isn’t convinced you deserve much more than that. In fact, he has chosen you so that he can use your situation as his excuse to give you less. Why would you choose someone who views you as helpless? He’s not there to help you. If he wanted to help you, he would build you up, not knock your self-esteem down so that you’ll deal with his foolishness.

The man who just wants to take advantage of us
You’ve searched for someone who simply appreciates you. This guy seems to do just that, but that is manipulation to get what he wants from you. He wants you to take care of him, and he expresses his adoration for the things you do so that you’ll do so willingly. He expects the result of his incessant praises, to be your continuation of his chores. The object of a relationship is to determine what you can give to it, but your cup must also be filled. If your actions are the only ones deserving of admiration, why not eliminate the leech that’s sucking you dry and just do those things for yourself and family?

The man who has potential
He shows signs of being such an amazing man, but he’s not. He has spoken the words that you wanted to hear and done some of the things that you need from a life partner so he has potential. However, is the potential who he is right now in this present moment? Is it even who you can guarantee him to be in the future in your situation? If that man isn’t taking the necessary steps to make himself a better man, the man you hop he will become, he is not that man, and may never become him. So you need to determine if you can live a life with the him you see before you. If that answer is no, then you need to let him go be the man who doesn’t measure up, for someone else.

Our expectations have plummeted to a new low, and we wonder why his treatment has met them there. We are selling ourselves for the lowest price, and wondering why we aren’t being valued.

What we should expect is the man who values us and our kids, feels privileged to have all of you in his life, has something to add to your life, and is ready for the challenge.
He sees you as the amazing woman you are, and he sees your kids as the wonderful little people they are. He’s not judging you or them or asking himself if he can or should deal with your situation. To him, having a women like you and kids like yours to love and be loved by is a treasure. He doesn’t view your situation as one that will weigh him down, but instead sees how much life you can bring to his future. The man who deserves you will be excited to add to your life, to give you security and your kids life lessons. He won’t participate in all of the taking because he wants all of you to experience something you’ve never had before.

Lastly, and mostly importantly, he’s ready. He’s not apprehensive, frightened, or wishy-washy. He is ready. He sees himself as a man who can give your kids what they need and you what you deserve. Knowing that challenges will arise, he’s all in and focused on a lifelong commitment to you. This is what you should expect, because it’s what you would expect of yourself and because it’s what you and your littles deserve.

I know you have been given less than this in the past, but that’s not an indication of what’s out there. Something better is waiting for you at the perfect time. Believe that he exists. Trust that God will provide the desires of your heart. And wait for him. God will write an incredible love story.

Originally published on the author’s blog

Karey Warriner

A mother, teach, and author, I write to heal and to bring others to healing. My ministry, Single Plus Two, is an avenue for single mothers to connect, breathe, and find their way.