Snapshot: When you marry a childless man

by singlemomseeking on May 10, 2011

This might not come as a surprise: I’ve been quite busy lately chatting with single moms who married men without kids. After all, I’m one of those woman, too.

Today, I’m so excited to introduce you to an amazing photographer and business woman: Deanna, owner of Devine Memories.

Deanna was married for 11 years when she and her husband split. “I was not just the single mom of three kids under the age of 10 — I was also running my own business, too.”

One year into single motherhood, Deanna decided that dating wasn’t going to work out. “I knew that I just needed enjoy my life and my three awesome kids,” she remembers thinking.

The day after she made that declaration, however, everything changed. Deanna had gone to hear some music with a friend. “We walked into the first show when this guy came up and introduced us to his friends. After talking to everyone, I zeroed in on a man named Tony…he had such a calm, quiet strength, and he was absolutely fascinating to talk to.”

When Tony told her that he was home from Afghanistan for just two weeks, Deanna thought it was perfect: she could hang out with this kid-less guy who was five year her junior, but not get serious. Deanna was also felt sure that when she told Tony she had three kids, he would run.

“Instead, he asked me their names and ages, and memorized them before the end of the night. We went on several dates, and after the third one I knew I was a goner. My life would never be the same.”

Before Tony returned to Afghanistan, they realized they were falling in love. They maintained a long-distance relationship via email and Skype for four months. And then he came home permanently.

One year after meeting, Tony proposed to Deanna near Golden Gate Bride in San Francisco — and this is where they’re getting married on 9-10-11.

Deanna is honest about the fact that she had to face her fears about getting married again: “I have compared it to surviving a plane crash and committing to get on a plane again…. But today, I’m way past those fears, and just ready to do it right this time!”

Deanna says she’s in awe of how her husband-to-be has adjusted to so much change. For one, he is learning how to parent alongside her kids’ biological father. “Tony has to love them as if they were his own but be prepared to step back at times when it breaks his heart to. I don’t envy his position.”

And there’s also the noisy home and packed schedules. “At first, all the soccer games, orchestra concerts, and school functions exhausted him.”

Tony is getting ready to move into Deanna’s home this summer. In the meantime, he has been remodeling to make more space: adding a larger patio, converting the garage to a second living area, fixing up the bathrooms.

“This poor guy  is going from living on his own for years to living with a wife and three crazy kids!” Deanna jokes.

On a serious note, she adds: “He has shown my children what a loving relationship between parents is. He is the best thing that ever happened to us.”

Here’s the soon-to-be blended family:


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May 10, 2011 « Getting Stronger
May 11, 2011 at 5:57 am

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarah May 10, 2011 at 4:03 pm

I think this is THE most important part of a blended family: “He has shown my children what a loving relationship between parents is.”

I know that I am grateful every day that my children can see the difference between a healthy, loving adult relationship and an unhealthy one. Hopefully this will give them the tools and options they need to choose a happier relationship for themselves when the time comes.

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Kari June 13, 2011 at 4:00 am

I agree… the only thing I would go further to say is that we together have shown my child this and I’m so proud of that.

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Avigail May 10, 2011 at 4:43 pm

And, this is my new favorite read too! It shows that it’s totally possible to get up and try again~ and it can be right the second time round.
Hugs to you Rache!

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Hilary Jacobs Trout May 10, 2011 at 5:20 pm

I love this story. I am also someone who fell head over heels in love with a soldier my junior. There is something very comforting about falling for a man that puts his life in danger for duty. We met playing kickball in Golden Gate Park as he was about to leave for Iraq. Our courtship was over IM! Wishing you many happy days ahead. And if you should ever need any help navigating the milworld, please let me know!

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mightbeatranny May 10, 2011 at 6:11 pm

wow. well, best of luck to you. you are a brave woman, and he sounds like a very patient, loving man. hope it works out and you have many wonderful years together.

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Minivan mom May 11, 2011 at 2:09 pm

As one of De’s best friends, mom of 3, and someone who divorced in 2010 and is now dating a younger never-married, childless man, De is my mentor in this whole process! Her advice is invaluable. Thanks for profiling her. :)

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singlemomseeking May 13, 2011 at 11:29 am

@Minivan mom: You’re welcome! How sweet that De is one of your closest friends.

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grace @ahead May 12, 2011 at 3:21 am

“and they lived happily ever after” is the best description, if you may, for this story. congratulations and best wishes to them!

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E. RaMona May 12, 2011 at 10:16 am

Wow. This was an encouraging read, as I am soon-to-be- divorced mother of three, (we’ve been separated for over three years). I say encouraging, because, the idea of trying again truly alarms me and I’ve kinda resolved to myself that I wouldn’t, “it’s just too complicated, you know? Especially with 3 children” But this post causes me be honest with myself, (I would like to love again) and I think it may actually be possible…..one day.

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Joanne May 14, 2011 at 11:26 am

It is so lovely to read that love can conquor all, and it truely can no matter what happens along the path of love, if you really do love eachother you can over come anything including an age difference.

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Mae May 19, 2011 at 12:29 pm

I love this post. I am so happy for them. As a single mom in a relationship with a childless man who is my junior this is exactly what I want to read. Thanks for posting this.

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BigLittleWolf May 20, 2011 at 6:23 am

As a single/solo mom for 10 years, I could relate to this post. I’ve dated off and on during these years – at some points, there was too much going on to date at all; at other points, I managed it for a while.

I was in a serious relationship with one man who had never had kids. It was an interesting process to see how my sons took to him, and he took to them. The fact that he had nieces and nephews certainly helped. He was good with children and liked them. But there’s no question that it takes a lot of time (and patience and understanding) for the person who hasn’t been a parent, allowing him to adjust to what is a very different lifestyle.

I wish this mom much luck. It’s an important topic.

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single mom May 31, 2011 at 10:56 pm

This is a wonderful and heartwarming story. I too am a single mom so thank you for the inspiration.

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Kari June 13, 2011 at 3:57 am

It has been a long time since I’ve read any blogs and I know this is an older post, but, thank you for it.

My husband also doesn’t have kids of his own (yet… we are 2 days away from our due date). His name… also Tony ;)

I really liked this part “Deanna says she’s in awe of how her husband-to-be has adjusted to so much change. For one, he is learning how to parent alongside her kids’ biological father. “Tony has to love them as if they were his own but be prepared to step back at times when it breaks his heart to. I don’t envy his position.”

It is so very true. My very own Tony has done an amazing job at this. He knows when to step back and not step on toes almost naturally and effortlessly. I find it amazing and it is one of the many reasons I continue to love this man!

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Kari June 13, 2011 at 3:59 am

Oh and yes, my husband is also younger than me by 6 years. WE both forget that little fact all the time so I forgot that it is also a common denominator here.

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The Pepperrific Life July 21, 2011 at 8:11 pm

What an inspiring story. Makes me believe in happy ever afters. I have a boyfriend now, and I hope he turns out to be a Tony too :) .

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