Oh bless you, mixed up mum. If you don’t mind, I’m going to firmly take you in hand and give you some nurturing advice. If it’s too bossy, tell me to f*** off.

1) Fun, free and independent activities

You need to find a way to enjoy yourself that doesn’t involve others or spending money. That’s going to seem tough I know. Grab a piece of paper so you can make a list. Then as you get ideas, write them down. Take a look at the things you already have:

Is there a favourite DVD you haven’t watched in a while?

Favourite book you’d like to read again?

An abandoned creative hobby you haven’t had time to do recently?

Are there some favourite nail polishes stashed in a draw somewhere?

Make a list of all the things you’d enjoy doing.

2) Date yourself – not as weird as it sounds, I promise!

Part of improving your self esteem is having a better relationship with yourself. As silly as this sounds, date yourself. I know as a single mum you won’t feel like you have the time. Thing is, if an absolute Adonis was to ask you on a date, I bet you’d find the time then. I know I would :-). Part of the reason for that is that you’d value him enough to carve the time out – time to do that for yourself. Plan a date with yourself. Use your list of fun, free and independent things to do for ideas.

3) About that birthday

Did your friends blow you out just the once? If they did, then it could just be an unfortunate set of circumstances and there is no evidence to suggest they’ll do it again.

If they keep doing this, then know this is about them, not you. I don’t ever treat my friends like that. Take a moment to pretend they are sitting in front of you, and thank them for showing you that you deserve better friends.

Otherwise. tell your friends you want a nice girly night in, and make sure they know it’s your birthday. If they accept the invite, then tell them how much you are looking forward to it. This way you are placing value on yourself and making your expectation clear. It could well be that the way you asked last time didn’t make it clear – if you have low self esteem that can happen sometimes.

If they do let you down, then carry on with your girly night in and enjoy one of your from, free and independent activitreally

4) Relationships

I’m really sorry, the others are right. I’m in the same boat, and I really need to take my own advice with this one. You really aren’t in a position to properly assess whether someone really is right for you.

You’ll have definite proof of this if you do have friends that blow you out. Before the first time they did that, you never imagined they would, right?

That guy does sound lovely, but if he’s taking exes back, then it sounds like he’s not in much of a position to start a healthy relationship either.

And consider this – I’m on here because after leaving a physically violent relationship, I fell in love with a friend. He was the sweetest guy I’d ever met. It turns out now that there is plenty of evidence to contradict that last statement. He has been subtly manipulating me for the last 15 years. I’m in a right mess now because of it.

There was no way I should have been in the first relationship because the abuse I received as a child was unresolved. And there was no way I should have ever got into a relationship with my soon to be ex husband, because I had the abuse from the first relationship and the abuse I’d received as a child. My self esteem was on the floor, and it made it impossible for me to see his unacceptable behaviouS for what it is, and not something that I caused – see my post on here from earlier this evening.

So I know, a nice nurturing relationship seems like exactly what you need to heal. I feel that too.

But even if this guy is amazing, imagine being loved by someone because of what they do for you, rather than for simply who you are. Imagine that person placing all the responsibility for their happiness on you. That is what you and I would do to anyone genuine who came into our lives right now.

I hope this helps, mixed up mum


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