Single Parent Faith

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Fresh Air Fund—A Life Changing Opportunity

Image Source: The Fresh Air Fund

I don’t typically do posts like this, but after hearing that one of NYC’s oldest non-profit organizations, the Fresh Air Fund, is in need of 1200 volunteer host families this summer, I thought I’d provide you some information in the event you or someone you know would like to participate. If you choose to, please let me know how the experience worked for you and your family, and the child. It would be great to share.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Dating Service- Through the Eyes of a Child and Single Mom, Part 2


“Do not train a child to learn by force or harshness; but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.” —Plato





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The dating service arranged a meeting for me after work, on a Friday my daughter was to be with her dad. That morning, as I was in my closet, my daughter asked, “Do you know what you’re going to wear?”

"No." 

“What kind of a look are you going for? Are you going for the sexy look?”

Where does she get this stuff? I don’t use the word “sexy” with my child, but there are multiple sources in a child’s life where they can pick up all sorts of language and ideas.

We stood in my closet as she pointed and selected various items, trying to match them for me. Eventually we made a combined selection—Of course I had veto power.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Dating Service- Through the Eyes of a Child and Single Mom, Part 1

“To bring up a child in the way he should go, travel that way yourself.” —Josh Billings
  


During the timeframe when I was trying out the dating service that I wrote about in Stint With Dating Service, my daughter was 11 years old.  I decided to use a couple of my dates as an opportunity to demonstrate what healthy dating is, with boundaries and awareness.

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First, let me say that my rule is that I only date when she is away visiting her father. I don’t get a baby sitter just for me to go out on a date.  I want to minimize disruptions of her routine and I don’t want to introduce feelings of insecurity— where she feels second to a stranger in my life. She needs to always know she is first. Additionally, since most of these first dates never turn into second, had I taken precious time away from my daughter, I would have regretted it. I don’t want to date at her expense, or even at the expense of me missing out on precious moments with her.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Laying the Groundwork for Our Kids' Future Dating Habits


Image From: http://flic.kr/p/9g8gXp
© All rights reserved by brandnewkathryn


Setting an example is not the main means of influencing another, it is the only means. — Albert Einstein

My daughter was about 11 yrs old at the time, when I realized how at such a tender age, kids are already in the throes of dating. Of course in their world the decision to go out and break up occurs often all in one day.  And the criteria used is very rudimentary: “Are they cute?” Or in more modern terms: “Are they hot?” which you don’t exactly expect to hear out of the mouth of your child. The criteria pretty much starts and ends there, unless we teach them differently.

For this reason, the adolescent years are definitely not too early to begin discussing the dating topic. In fact, if you don’t begin early establishing the norm of open communication, they will recoil from you more than the usual clamming up moments in their teen years. No matter what age, if your child says they are “going” with someone or that they already have, then what are you waiting for? Get started engaging them in dialogue!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Stint with a Dating Service— Not Really Listening


All rights reserved by minotauro9
http://flic.kr/p/8Lzr4R

A few years ago, I joined a professional dating service that arranged for initial break the ice meetings at a local restaurant. The downfall to all this was that it was always a blind date situation—someone other than me got to pick the guy, based on their interpretation of his and my written profile.

I know what I want, so adding a stranger in the mix to interpret (through her filter) what I communicated, leaves me at the mercy of her judgment. There are several other women who assisted pairing me up. All these opportunities for misinterpretation of my words were equivalent to having too many cooks in the kitchen, between my order and the results. 

Friday, June 3, 2011

Making Time for People

"Thus nature has no love for solitude, and always leans, as it were, on some support; and the sweetest support is found in the most intimate friendship." 
- Cicero


http://flic.kr/p/9PaFSd
I believe that some of us are at risk of dying before we depart the earth. The internal chambers of our hearts and minds lead us to a life of living or dying.

Our attention spans, where have they gone?

Our interest in others, how do we demonstrate it?

Most of us either distracted, or in a rush, may find ourselves exhaling our busy lives away. It seems like we barely have time to meet someone for coffee, to catch up over lunch, never mind dinner. How many people are we passing by, assuming they’re fine and not taking the time to ask beyond the polite and now perfunctory,  “How are you?”

I find it ironic that in a Facebook era where we have hundreds, perhaps even thousands of supposed “friends,” we rarely make time to sit face-to-face and have an authentic conversation. We are so “connected” electronically, but I would venture to say, less “connected” emotionally.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Development

Once I said to God, “How do you teach us?”

And He replied,

“If
you were
playing chess with someone who
had infinite power and infinite knowledge
and wanted to make you a
master  of the
game,

where would all the chess
pieces be at every
moment?

Indeed, not only where he wanted them,
but where all were best for your
development;

and that is every situation
of one’s
life.”

—St. John of the Cross (1542-1591)
[Born Juan de Yepes y Alvarez
in Fontiveros, Spain]
                                                             

From: “Love poems from God: Twelve Sacred Voices from the East and West,” by Daniel Ladinsky, 2002. New York, NY: Penguin Compass.