Single mom and dad dating

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This year I came home four times from college and he was in town every single time.

After I went back to campus each time Mom said, ‘I never get to see you!

I've dated ("dated") divorced dudes before, which might be a little similar, but this relationship marks my first with a parent.

When the relationship was brand-spankin' new, a lot of close friends lamented renditions of, "I could never DATE A PARENT." They echoed sentiments of kids being deal breakers. Everyone has a past and brings baggage into a relationship. Although, of course, I find my partner's child a deeply charming, fun, hilarious little human who doesn't qualify as "baggage." You know what I mean.

Suddenly the jokes seemed a little creepy, and although I actively pumped the brakes on making them, those familiar with my menagerie of hot dad puns rose a skeptical eyebrow. Hotness aside, there's some unexpected things that happen when you date a single dad.

Wise singles recognize this important dynamic and don’t assume that becoming a couple necessarily means that they can become a family. Parents who begin dating quickly after the end of a relationship (whether by death or divorce) or who reach a quick decision to marry after a brief dating period often find their children more resistant to the marriage. Smart singles take a good long look in the mirror before dating. Smart single parents don’t let their children’s emotions dictate their dating progress, but they do listen and give serious consideration to how the children are feeling (becoming a couple is up to you; whether you become a family is up to them). Teens and adult children need to move toward your dating partner at their own pace.

They attend to both and take time assessing how the potential stepfamily relationships are developing. This sabotages the ability of a stepparent and stepchild to get off on the right foot with one another and puts the family at risk. They examine their motivations for dating, fears (e.g., their children not having a father), loneliness, and unresolved hurt (e.g., after divorce). Engage in these conversations throughout your dating experience, especially in anticipation of each stage of a developing relationship. If you make it your agenda to get them to accept your partner and relationship, you may be shooting yourself in the foot. Early on your kids may meet your date, but the first few dates should primarily be about the two of you.

Even though I modeled it for jokes above, I resisted the urge to actually don and sport it around. Every situation is different, but my boyfriend is still on amicable terms with his child's mother, who also lives near us.

Matters are so peachy that she even shared me on a Google Calendar she, her boyfriend, and my boyfriend share re: who has chief parenting duties when (it's half-and-half, really).

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