TORONTO, April 27, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Moms are using the Internet for everything from shopping and banking to catching up with friends. Similarly, single parents are turning to the Internet for a second or third go at love. This Mother's Day, Lavalife offers single moms the ultimate gift: the encouragement to find love now and the tools they need for a successful online dating journey.
"We know from a BBC World poll of Internet users in 19 countries that 1-in-3 people online are looking for romance so it is safe to assume that a large percentage of those seeking love are single parents," explains Kim Hughes, Singles and Dating Expert for Lavalife. "Online dating gives single parents who are busy but also cautious of who they allow into their world the chance to look for a mate on their own time and the ability to screen and filter their search."
Re-entering the dating game can be daunting for anyone. "It is important that singles feel comfortable and confident when searching for love online," continues Hughes. "With a little guidance, this can be easy to achieve."
Why Online Dating Is Ideal for Single Moms
1) It's Affordable
With the possible exception of Sandra Bullock, most single moms must be vigilant about expenses, leaving little discretionary income to find dates at bars, gyms and hot spots. With online dating, a small monthly fee - less than the cost of one glass of wine with tip if you sign up for six months or more - allows single moms to peruse 1,000s of profiles of eligible single guys while exchanging unlimited emails and IMs. And you don't need an extensive wardrobe to do it.
Tip: Don't be afraid to take the initiative. If a guy's profile catches your fancy, go ahead and send him a smile. He'll be five kinds of flattered, and you'll feel great about taking charge of your dating life.
2) It's Available 24/7 (and never requires a sitter)
Lavalife is 'open for business' every hour of every day all year long. So whether your daily "you" time falls first thing in the morning before the kids wake up or last thing at night after they've gone to bed, you can communicate with like-minded singles keen to make a connection based on shared interests, values and goals.
Tip: Great online chemistry doesn't always translate offline, so limit the amount of time you spend communicating digitally before meeting up for coffee to see if there's sparks.
3) It's Customizable
Whatever criteria is foremost in your search for a date or mate - distance from your home, languages spoken, faith, ethnic background, age range, even astrological sign - you can custom your search to find exactly who you're looking for, while eliminating those who just won't cut it.
Tip: Everyone has dating and relationship deal-breakers (think religion or smoking) but being fluid with the preferential stuff such as height, weight and hobbies widens your potential dating pool.
4) It's Safe and Private
Because Lavalife members use nicknames to correspond with each other inside a closed, proprietary email system, your personal information is concealed until you choose to share it. You can limit who sees your photos, cease communicating with anyone at any time for any reason and get 24/7 assistance from trained customer services reps. (As in actual, live people handling your call.)
Tip: Keep yourself safe offline by organizing a first date in a public place. Make sure a friend knows where you're going, who you are meeting and when you are due back.
5) It's About You
Lavalife allows you to reveal as much or as little information as you would like in your online dating profile. For single moms, your success is based on how well you express yourself. Creating an awesome online dating profile is easy:
- Be specific and detail-oriented. Rather than relying on generalizations such as "I like having fun with friends" describe what fun means to you. It is horseback riding or baking? Movies or hot yoga?
- Post lots of photos and use them to tell the story of you. Profiles with images get eight times the response of those without. Avoid pics of your kids or posting a pic that dates back 20 years. Instead post recent pics from a great vacation, night out with friends, etc.
- Be honest. If you fib about dress size or age, your date will notice when you finally meet and nobody appreciates deceit.
- Lose the lengthy wish list. Only declare absolute relationship deal-breakers (smoking, religion, etc.)
- Be positive. Stay focused on what makes you happy.
- Use spell check and a trusted friend as an editor. She can remind you to emphasize traits that make you special.
- Never list highly personal information such as your address, personal email or phone number.
- Leave some stuff to the imagination. A profile is a launch point for discussion not a memoir.