Single Dads Support Group

This community is dedicated to fathers who are going through the parenting process alone or without the support of a spouse. Single parenthood is often opted for by the parent (as in divorce, adoption, artificial insemination, surrogate motherhood, or extramarital pregnancy), or an unforeseeable occurrence (as in the death of one parent or abandonment by one parent).

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Dating - Needing a male's thoughts . . . .

I have been divorced for over a year now and still find it hard to date someone. I have two young children and they are my main concern when meeting anyone. How do you not subject your kids to the "dating" scene? Do you single dads have the same concerns or am I just being an over protective mother?

Replies

deleted_user
deleted_user

Dating someone does not mean you must introduce him (in your case) to your kids. It also does not mean you have to engage in sex with him.

Until June 2010, my daughter lived with her mom and I was the typical every other weekend dad. Since June 2010 my daughter has lived with me and I now have custody. However, in November 2008, I met the woman who today is my wife. My daughter met her a couple of months after I did. I dated someone else before, but my daughter did not meet her. I simply would spend my entire visitation weekend with my daughter, doing daddy/daughter things.

You can do the same as well. Date when your kids are with their father. Date this way as much as you like, keeping in mind the first part of my post. This way, if you are looking for a serious relationship, you can take your time sizing up each "candidate."

Just my .02.
deleted_user
deleted_user

Thank you for the advice. I do date when my children are with their father, I was more questioning when and how to introduce your children to someone that you may think you have a potential future with.
deleted_user
deleted_user

Oh, ok.

There's really no "perfect" time for that. But, as a woman, you do have an advantage. Men are both more willing to introduce their kids to a woman they're dating, and with whom they believe there is potential for a meaningful relationship, AND we're more eager to be introduced to the children of the woman we're dating, than it is the opposite. Use that to your advantage. Please don't misunderstand what I mean.

It is one thing to use a man's desire to meet your kids. It is a totally different thing to use your kids to procure a man's desire regarding you. Please don't do the latter.

At any rate, the ultimate decision factor is whether your kids are emotionally ready to meet the man you want to introduce to them.
deleted_user
deleted_user

Thank you! I am not as open to having my kids meet the person I choose to date. I happen to be with one guy that immediately wanted to be introduced and I thought it was rather odd. He has a 7 year old daughter of his own but didn't hesitate at all even though we had only known each other for 1 day. Was just curious.

Thank again!
1pos93
1pos93

I am living with my ex-girlfriend now, because she can't affor to get her own place. The good side is that my 4 month old son is still living with me, which is awesome. I love having him there full time, but me and his Mother do not get along for a million reasons, but mainly because she is a HUGE liar. I have been putting off dating out of respect for her, basically putting my personal life on hold, but when she moves out I will be starting to date again. I will DEFINITELY NOT be doing the dating around my son whenever possible. I do not think it would be good to bring somebody that I do not know very well into that circle. Any guy who demands to meet your child right away, is a creep. You should be able to do it when you are good and ready and build up this important thing that we call TRUST!! Good luck to all single parents out there! I am learning how tough it is.
satcom66
satcom66

All of the single mothers I have dated were very protective with their kids. The typical story was a mom who had been single for over five years whose kid(s) had never met a single date.

The notable exception was my, now ex, wife who introduced our kids to her affair partner a few months after we separated. My kids were clearly impacted by this and developed rather extreme separation anxiety. It got so bad that I literally could not walk into the kitchen from the living room without them having a panic attack including crying fits.

There are two factors to consider. One is how long you've been separated and how your kids are handling it. IMHO, they need to get settled into the new world before you start bringing romantic partners into their lives.

The second factor is how serious the relationship is. The kids have gone through a big separation. You don't want people coming and going from their lives.

When you figure those two factors, I can easily see how it would be years after a separation to introduce kids to a potential partner.
deleted_user
deleted_user

It is just my practice not to introduce my child to anyone I am not going to be serious with. Children go through enough with the travel between two homes, the separation of the parents and the tension of a split family. They do not need to add two parents dating into their equation. My thought is to keep them away from the scene until you are really becoming serious and then slowly introduce the child into the situation.
deleted_user
deleted_user

You should wait as long as possible. In another life, when I was single with no kids, I dated a single mother. She introduced me to her daughter on the second date. It wasn't a formal invitation. It was kind of by accident. Well, at least it seemed so to me. I came to the mother's house to pick her up. Her daughter (5) was there being baby sat by her grandfather. The daughter saw me, and I saw her. We obviously had to meet. The daughter attached to me instantly.

After a few months of dating, the daughter revealed to me that she wanted me to be her daddy. It shocked me. I later cried because I knew my relationship with the daughter was considerably better than the relationship with the mother.

Long story short, the mother and I didn't work out. I now have a baby with another woman. I keep an eye on the daughter indirectly via Facebook, and I don't try to communicate directly with the daughter.

I'm pretty sure the mother doesn't wait too long to introduce men to her daughter. In fact, I bet it's part of her screening process, which is sad. I wonder what effect this dating routine will have on the daughter later in life. All she knows is men coming in-and-out of her mommy's life, and none are stick around long enough to be her daddy.
deleted_user
deleted_user

I just posted on this same topic in this thread

http://www.dailystrength.org/c/Single_Dads/forum/12505284-introducing-ur-children-another
deleted_user
deleted_user

Hold on did you say mother?? I thought this was for DADS...

No, I am the same way with my daughter. Anyone I date casually doesn't meet her..
kingsfan1414
kingsfan1414

I don't know about you, but I have my son full time. Dating for me has been a nightmare for the past 4 years. I only date when he is spending the night somewhere else so I can feel free to go out without guilt. I do not let anyone meet him until I am comfortable with who the person is. I am more interested in making friends and if something develops from the friendship, then great. But yes, I can relate to you. You are not being over protective. You should think of your children first. I have a friend who started dating this crazy guy. She would tell me all this stuff. The only thing I could think was, GOD I hope you never bring that guy around your kids. You don't ever want your friends & family to feel that way about who you are dating. It is a good measuring stick, your comfort level of that person around your children.
Mossyhorn
Mossyhorn

I know this is to each his/her own on this thread, but I have had casualy relationships that I would take the kids around for public functions, we would meet at festivals or places in public, just be friends in front of the kids, but I never invited those people to my home while the kids were there, never let them see us as more than friends, in my mind no different than them meeting any of my friends anywhere out like that.

I am engaged to be married now, we have beent together about 13 months, it was 4 months or so before I introduced them, about 6 months before I let her come over and watch movies and stuff with the kids. I have sole custody of my 2, their mom gets them EOW, so it was tough to date like that, but worth it.

Some people hang on the fact that you shouldn't bring folks in and out of the kids lives frequently, and I can understand that to an extent of bringing home a different woman every weekend, but to say you need to be sure of a relationship before bringing the kids into it............ I was pretty sure with my X wife that was the case, stuff happens, I still want to live a life with companionship if I can and I have kids, I figure out the best way to do both that I think is right for all involved.