Dating on its own can make a person nervous but dating a woman with kids has a whole lot more involved. You don't only need to be concerned about whether the woman likes you but you also want to make an impression on her kids. The relationship is not just between you and the woman but it is also between you and her children.
Women without children will usually find it much easier to find dates than a single mom would. In fact, there are many men that will not date a woman because she has children and they don't want the issues that children can bring. Because single mom's can find it difficult to get a date they may be more eager to date someone that is interested in them. You do need to remember though that she needs to give her children the time and attention that they need which means she may have less time for dating. You will need to work around her children's needs as her kids will always be her first priority.
Many single mothers also work full time, and then of course they have the kid's sports and other after school activities to attend, so there isn't often much time left for a social life. You may need to be prepared to see her when she can fit you in around her hectic schedule, don't expect to call her and tell her you are on your way around to take her out to dinner – your dates will need to be planned and scheduled in advance. It may be that she has one free night a week and this may be the only night that she can go out on a date with you.
A good mother won't want to bring a succession of men into her kid's lives so she may not want to introduce you to her children until the relationship has developed a bit further. Her kids are her priority and the most important thing in the world to her and she doesn't want them getting hurt if a man was to come into their life and then leave. She will only want you to get to know her kids if she feels secure in your future together so you may be dating for six months or so before you get to meet the kids. Not all children will be happy with their mother dating someone other than their father so it could be a struggle for a little while to overcome such obstacles.
Even though these are not your children, if you intend to have a long term relationship with their mother then you need to get to know them well and build a good relationship with them. Younger children are reasonably easy to build a relationship with if you spend time playing with them or throwing the ball to them, while older children will be a little more difficult.
Most children will carry a hope that their parents will get back together and they may see you as a threat to that fantasy. There will be some resistance to you having a role in their mom's life. Then there are other obstacles like having authority over the children. Although they are not your children you will still need some authority over them. They may not like that at first and tell you that you are not their dad and so cannot tell them what to do. You should discuss authority with their mother as she needs to feel comfortable with your authority over her children too.
You may want to spend some time on weekends going on family outings and getting to know the children better. Going to the park, swimming pool or the beach can all help you to have a good time and enjoy yourself getting to know one another. Family outings can be more expensive than just dating a single woman without children.
The sexual relationship with a single mom can also be a bit tricky as the woman may be reluctant to have you staying over as she doesn't want to send the wrong message to her children. She may also find it difficult to stay over your place if she can't get anyone to look after her kids.
When dating a woman with kids you need to be prepared that it will be much different to dating a woman without kids. Her children are her priority and you need to understand and accept to have a good relationship with her. You also need to keep in mind that you may become quite attached to her children and if you breakup with this woman you don't only lose her, but you lose her children too, which can be quite heartbreaking.