If you’re a single parent, the time will come when you’ll eventually think about getting back into the dating game. But there’s so much more to consider than our single, childless counterparts – how will my new relationship impact the kids? Will his kids like me? Should I tell my ex I’m dating again? Let’s look at some helpful relationship advice for when you’re ready to start dating again.
Give yourself time
If being single is the result of a recent breakup, give yourself time to heal and discover who you are. If you were in a long-term relationship, chances are that many of your decisions and behaviours were aligned with your ex. Now that you are single again, you need some time to figure out who you are, and what you want out of life. This is also a time to allow time to let your children know that you are there for them. Entering into a relationship too soon may cause some uneasy feelings for your children, especially if the reason you are single is because of a divorce or death of a spouse.
Consider how the relationship might impact your children
When a single parent decides to date, the relationship will almost always impact the children. Young children might fear that you will love them less. Teenagers might resent your new partner whom they might see as trying to replace their other parent. For these reasons before you begin a new relationship, it is important to reassure your children that they are loved and no can replace the other parent.
Another issue of concern when children are involved is how the new partner feels about children. If he or she does not have children, adjusting to being around children may take some time. If they already have kids, how will they accept your kids into their life?
Allow a relationship to develop over time
When you decide to start dating, you might rush into a relationship because exit’s been so long since you felt the excitement of being with someone new. While it is possible to fall in love quickly, it is also possible to get swept away by emotions before getting to know the other person. Some couples find that becoming friends who hang out together works better to solidify a relationship in the early stages. For example, going on day trips with the children and hanging out with friends – both yours and theirs – can allow you to get to know each other without pressure. It can also help your children warm up to the idea having a new person in their lives.
What are your best dating tips for single parents?