3. You Will Lose Your Sexy
A good friend and I were having cocktails one evening last year (one of the perks of single-motherhood) when he said to me, "You know, I never realized you were so attractive. I always saw you as a mom in sweats, but now you're really hot!" When his wife arrived at the bar a bit later, shocked, she said the same thing.
I had really lost my mojo in all the puke and poop, not to mention the crappy marriage to the man who hadn't touched my body in more than three years (but that's another story). I'd always felt sexy inside, but apparently that had been lost to the outside world for a long, long time and I was totally blind to it for way too long.
If you feel like you're losing your sexy, here are some things you can do:
- Excercise. Any kind of exercise will make you feel more connected to your body and in turn will make you feel sexier. The more in shape you are, the more confident you are. When you feel your tight muscles, you want to show them off. You hold yourself differently, you walk differently. You exude confidence. And that is sexy!
- Slow down. Only very slightly, otherwise you'll feel like there's something wrong with you. But when you want your husband to notice you, start to move just a little more deliberately. When you're in heels, walk slowly enough that you aren't teetering, but rather swishing your hips just ever so slightly and crossing one foot over the other ever so slightly. If you're at a restaurant and get up to go to the bathroom, hold your head a little higher, shoulders back, chin up and slow your pace just a hair. Trust me: he'll notice.
- Take pole-dancing classes. Sheila Kelly's S-Factor is a great place for that. No mirrors, no bright lights, just closed, private rooms where you and a bunch of other women can begin to feel sensual and get back in touch with your inner sex-goddess. It's two hours of just you and your body, which let's face it, you need to reclaim after it's been invaded by little baby aliens! After some time, you can even bring your husband in and wow him with a private lap dance!
4. If You Do Get Divorced, You Will Have Nothing
Oh sure, you'll have spousal support for a little while and child support, but you will have nothing to call your own for a great long time. When I got divorced, I had two years of spousal support. Two years! I was under 40 and had been married less than 10 years, so California law allows for 50 percent of the marriage duration in spousal support.
Seems fair enough, except that for most of those two years I was just trying to get my head screwed back on straight. I spent most of my support on therapy, which was the best investment I could ever make, but in the end, two years' support was nowhere near enough. I gave up my house in the divorce. I knew that once my two years of support was up I'd have a hard time paying the mortgage, so I moved into a rental not too far away.
Soon after, my mother offered to help me buy a house, something to call 'mine' that would be less expensive than the house I'd given up. I was overjoyed and we promptly began the process, only to be cut short almost immediately. You see, as I had zero income to claim as my own for the previous four years, I was unable to qualify for my own loan, and while my mother has a good amount of savings from a pretty hefty real-estate investment return, it's all tied up in retirement funds, which cannot be used as collateral on a mortgage.
I went to my ex-husband with this information and asked if he'd cosign a loan for me, given that his income could more than support it. My dear friend who is a real estate mogul refers to a cosigner as "an idiot with a pen," but in this case I thought it was a reasonable request, since I'd given up everything to raise our child.
On the back end, perhaps he could cosign a loan, so I could invest in my own future, and our son's. Nope. No such luck. He didn't want to be financially tethered to me in such a way, (which I actually respect and think is likely wiser in the end), and to this day, I have nothing to call my own, except two pretty awesome dogs and my healthy psyche (both of which are debatable most days).
A post-nup can be a good way to combat this last one, and while no one wants to think about such things in the midst of a happy marriage, since over 50 percent of marriages end in divorce, having this conversation now could save you a lot of headaches and money down the line.
In the end, becoming a SAHM is an extremely personal choice and one which thousands of women make every year. My best advice, however, is to go into it with as much foresight as possible. Discuss all aspects with your spouse and don't go into it blindly.
Kate Anthony works with Single Moms to weed through all the craziness of what this new life has to offer, and find within themselves the amazing, powerful and relentless love-goddesses that they truly are. For more information about how to work with her, visit her website and find her on Facebook and Twitter. Sign up for instant access to The Three Unconscious Mistakes You Might Be Making That Are Killing Your Chances At Happiness.