Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.

Relationship dilemma

Community Member
The past year or so ive been in an internal battle with myself on being a proud single woman happy to not have a partner and more than capable of being a single mum by choice(through donor sperm and IUI) and wanting a partner.
Ive been through financial abuse, sexual assault and verbal abuse in my past relationship so I guess that explains why I'm so cautious now. Every time I think about having a partner I want to throw up(literally) because I can't picture myself with an adult sized child(that isn't my own child) living with me, sleeping in my bed, being around, sharing a life with etc. I fear being in a relationship then that relationship breaking down and it all going sour like ive heard from friends many times where the guy takes absolutely everything leaving the woman in the dirt basically or trying to take the kids and court orders etc, all that scares the hell out if me! I'm lucky for now that my sons father refuses to be in his life, things are peaceful for me now and I dont want to change that by bringing a stranger into our lives. Plus im also terrified of a potential partner stinking like a dead animal because he doesnt know how to keep up his own personal hygiene(reference to the ex there..), like im not your mum and im not a cat that licks you to get you clean.
But then I think all traditionally and that marriage is the next step in life and having a partner would mean I get help with future kids or even buying a house which I might not be able to do as a single woman.

Its such a frustrating battle in my head. I jump on these dating apps and see what's there maybe something will instantly click but nope, and I don't have time to just go out there unless Prince charming who meets my long list of yes shows up on my doorstep.

I want to talk about this stuff with my psychologist but ive never been very open in talking about that stuff with anyone in person.. but I need to get my mind in the right direction sort of thing.
4 Replies 4

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi Notanurse (lol love your name btw)

I absolutely hear you LOUD AND CLEAR. You don't want to hear my story lol... I'm way older than you btw.

I've talked about this stuff very openly with all of my close friends. Are you just trying to "tease out" your thoughts and values and reconcile your hopes and dreams or am I close?

I'm a single mum again. Been through hell. (I have a bf & am in a VERY long distance relationship with him, it was a total 1 in a billion chance connection). I can't stomach any ideas of dating apps.

After my last marriage ended, I was like "3 strikes and I'm out".... I can't do relationships for ALL the reasons you mentioned and more - the ones you feared came true for me.

Anyway ... it seems like you're kind of trying to "make yourself" think you need to be married to (correct me if I'm wrong)..:
* "do the next step" ie like marriage is ticking the box?
* get help with future kids
* buy a house because you can't see yourself doing this alone
* conform to your idea of "social norms"?

You mentioned nothing of:
falling in love..
Having intimacy in your life..
Having a companion with common interests..
Having an intellectual equal even?

Then at the same time you... know you've been through DV and are still recovering, believe you could conceive more children via donors and single parenting well...

BUT are super afraid of all the bs that goes along with a greater than 50% chance of separating (due to stats of 2nd "marriages")...DON'T BLAME YOU.

When you say "...but I need to get my mind in the right direction sort of thing." what do you mean?

It seems like you're feeling that being as you are, a single mum of 1, is NOT the "right direction"?
Are you feeling that what you have already is "not enough"?

I'd love to keep talking with you about all this stuff. If you could respond to some of my queries lol then we may figure EVERYTHING out together lol! I was joking... it'd be great to get some individual clarity.



Im a believer in dating apps. They minimalist time finding a companion using traditional methods, they narrow down interests etc

Anyway, I think many people now find the thought of placing trust in another person daunting. Then your dreams get shattered, property division and healing. Add to that the recover of any abuse, as in your case Notanurse.

This leaves you logically with considering a long term bf/gf relationship that over time gains trust and a special bond. But our heart often rules our head, before we know it we commit.

For what it’s worth I think you’ve answered the challenge of becoming a parent and showed much tenacity. Perhaps a dream of owning your own home could be found in a country area where prices are lower?, the men old fashioned and other benefits that suit your pursuits?


Hi again Notanurse (happy wave to Tony WK!)

I was a thinking of you & your situation / dilemma this morning and realised something.

For a very long time I was putting my list together of the 'right man' that would suit me.. ALL the qualities I wanted in that person. Also a house yes (I got that and more by myself as a single mum) but also more children etc.

I did some work on myself but coming out of abuse, I realised this morning, that I didn't do enough work on myself back then. I don't expect to be perfect but I also don't expect anyone else to be perfect either - it's an unattainable expectation.

There are free Courses available now (not when I was young) that help women see red flags of abusive personalities in others AND what do about it too. I've done these courses and I was truly gobsmacked.

Tbh I also listened, and believed, too many frail excuses for why a person did this, didn't do that etc. Blaming others 100% for their situation is a red flag for me. I'm a pretty strong, independent person with a great career and income but also have far too much empathy lol. These are good qualities for a healthy relationship but also an attractant for abusive personalities - esp the money / assets part.

If I'd learnt about THIS a long time ago, I would have saved myself a lot of damage.

Tbh at this stage of my life and with a sizeable asset pool I want to protect, I would prefer a companionship / dating relationship less than 2 nights per week (safeguarding myself in Family Law). I'll set up a Family Trust as more of my children acquire assets. A pre-nup FOR SURE.


Community Member
Hi Notanurse,

I resonate with your post as it’s almost a mirrored reflection on what I’ve been through. It’s good that you’ve reached out on here, I’ve found it very beneficial to open up in a safe space such as these forums.

My ex was abusive to me and it has ruined the way I view potential future relationships. It’s difficult to navigate through so much trauma and sometimes it takes time to realise how much past events have affected you.

Don’t feel that you have to rush into any decisions about your future. From my personal experience and what how I initially read your post, what you might need to do is work out ways to lessen the impact these feelings have on your day-to-day life.

For me personally, I started a ‘worry period’, where I’d allocate 15 minutes to half an hour a day to focus purely on anything that was stressing me out and any negative feelings I had. For the rest of the day, I try and occupy my mind with things that make me happy. At the moment I’m studying so that’s been keeping me busy, and reading is usually a good escape.

I find doing this helps to lessen the impact the past has on my present. It takes some getting used to but I’ve noticed that I do spend less time thinking about my ex and all the decisions about my future.

Take your time and work through your feelings. If you are able to speak to your psychologist then that’s the perfect place to start, but I’d also like to offer you the chance to chat here with me if you’d like. Completely up to you, I saw your post and it immediately spoke to me as I understand how you feel.

Kind regards,