Dating For Single Parents
Some people would consider it baggage and steer well away, others will it find a distinct blessing and others will simply love you enough that whoever comes with you, it is alright by them. What are we talking about? Kids. Yes, your little angels (or not!).
Let’s state the obvious, it is not just yourself to consider as you dip your toe back into the dating arena. As a single parent, it’s important to make wise choices, and fast, especially regarding the individuals you bring into contact with your children. Here’s our hard and fast guide – where to find partners, what to do when you start dating and signs to look out for!
Where Dating For Single Parents
The first hurdle, is to get yourself on the market. Target your sources well. You can go for a niche website aimed specifically at adults who are already in the family way. The biggest advantage in going to an online dating website for parents is that everyone knows what to expect. For example, he or she should know that you will not be available all the time because you need time to be with your children. What’s more, members on the site already know that almost everyone online are single parents, so you do not have to go through the awkward moment of telling your partner about your young ones. This is particularly useful for those who have difficulty admitting that you have kids for fear of scaring potential love away.
A single parents’ dating service eliminates this, thus you can get past that phase and go on to more important matters such as getting to know each other better. One last thing, the fact that you are a online website aimed at single parents is sending out a loud and clear message to your prospective parents: he or she knows that you are a responsible man or woman who can take in the responsibilities of parenthood. And he or she also knows and appreciates the fact that you are one person who is risking your heart for them.
If you prefer a more general online dating site, stick to those that attract a more mature, serious crowd (and more likely to have kids of their own) and also good bets in weeding out non-serious players.
Of course, we’re going to start by sugestting d.etal dating events that attracts a sophisicated, intellectual crowd. Naturally, not all of the guests will have children however, by putting yourself out there with like-minded individuals, you are able to meet other singles in a safe environment, get yourself out of the house and widen your social circle.
Single Parent Dating Tips
So you have found a potential long-term partner. Now what?
1. Make it clear that your child comes first. A mature adult will understand and respect this.
2. Establish routines with your child that show him that he comes first. Stick to these routines when involved in a romantic relationship. Do not cancel plans with your child to go on a date.
Don’t tell your child that you are dating until you feel your date has relationship potential. Until such time, simply say that you are going out with a friend.
3. Make sure your child feels secure in your love for him. If he is anxious or acts out, address his fears or anger in a caring and reassuring way. How you treat your child during these moments is more important than what you say.
4. When you feel you know and trust the person you are dating, introduce him to your child. Make initial visits brief. Note how your date interacts with your child and your child’s response to him. Do not permit your date to spend time alone with your child, until you see that he genuinely attunes to and values your child as a person who is separate from you. Trust your child’s perceptions. If your child doesn’t feel comfortable around this man, investigate why.
5. Have your child call the person you are dating by his first name. Don’t make the mistake of letting a child prematurely call a partner “mummy” or “daddy”.
6. Perhaps the best single parent dating tip is to take it slow. If this relationship is leading to marriage, then you’ll want to make sure that this man is the right man for you and your child.
Single Parent Dating Checklist
A. Does your children get on with your partner, or do they resent he or she being around? Observe how he or she interacts with your children – do they show an interest, or do they see your children as an irritation? Do they have positive, caring relationships with their children (if any), or does the parent prefer time away from their kids to spend on their own activities and hobbies?
B. Does the person find it difficult to compromise? Do they have a tendency to rant, whinge and complain? Do you share common interests? Do you have fun together? These factors are important to consider, along with whether you are physically attracted to one another.
C. What is his or her relationships with extended family members, authority figures (like bosses), and (if applicable) his or her relationship with their ex? Beware anyone who has a tendency to blame others in their life for not being able to get on with, or maintain a relationship, Take special notice of how he or she treats loved ones.
D. When it comes to dating, you’re not just concerned with an individual’s integrity and moral character. You also need to look at whether they’re able and willing to maintain a job, resolve conflict, and delay gratification.
E. Another important component to character is how we react to anger. Becoming out of control or explosive, or taking anger out on others, should definitely be deal breakers!
F. In time, the first flush of love will disappear, but how he or she makes you feel will endure. Do they surprise you with little treats? Do they compliment you? Do they genuinely love to be around you? If you’re not consistently feeling good about yourself in his or her presence, that’s a red flag that this dating relationship may not be healthy for you.