Starting Over
Dear Community,

Our tech team has launched updates to The Nest today. As a result of these updates, members of the Nest Community will need to change their password in order to continue participating in the community. In addition, The Nest community member's avatars will be replaced with generic default avatars. If you wish to revert to your original avatar, you will need to re-upload it via The Nest.

If you have questions about this, please email help@theknot.com.

Thank you.

Note: This only affects The Nest's community members and will not affect members on The Bump or The Knot.

If you have kids and are dating... a question

Let me preface this by saying that I have no intention whatsoever of exposing DS to my dating life in any way. I only go out when he is with his dad so he has no clue about any of it. It's going to stay that way until I have a long term and serious relationship.

This question has come up with a friend of mine and it has made me wonder...She introduced her serious boyfriend to her kids after about 6-8 months. They were planning on getting married. He had no experience with children but had no problem with it... until they met. He left because he realized that being with a mother of young kids wasn't right for him. She is obviously crushed and has decided not to date anyone without kids from now on.

If you have kids would you date someone with no experience with kids?

Re: If you have kids and are dating... a question

  • I can see where she's coming from. Having kids is very different than the idea of kids. I wouldn't want to get serious with someone just to find out that DS is a deal breaker because DS will always come first and I'd be hurt. So what do you do?

     

    I'm really glad I'm only very casually dating! That situation would just plain suck.

  • I have no kids and extremely limited contact with them as an adult. My BF has 2, and he's the first man I've ever dated seriously with kids. I actually think its better for me personally, but everyone is different. I like the idea of having kids in my life (for all the joy they bring, grand kids and family get togethers, etc), but I'm losing interest in having my own full time children, so it works for me. Men can sometimes be different with not wanting them in their lives at all. 
  • Ugh, this is the double edged sword.  You never want to introduce children too soon, however, sometimes you never know how someone will be around children until they are actually there. 

    You can tell a guy until you are blue in the face about waking up every hour on the hour to wipe a runny nose and force feed children's Ibuprofen, or explain how you will never, ever get to go to the bathroom in private again.  But sometimes until someone actually experiences it, they just won't get it.

    I wonder if there was a way she could have had the bf around the kids in a group setting so they wouldn't really know who he was, but he could get a feel of them?  I love DS, but frankly, kids can be annoying sometimes and I'd want to make sure someone was prepared for it all. 

    I have dated people with no experience with children before and sometimes it can be fine, and other times it's not.  Usually you can tell by how interested someone seems in your child ie: asking questions about them, seeming to be interested when you talk about them, to gage whether or not they'll actually be into kids.  IMO someone doesn't have any business dating a single mom if they cannot handle the whole package.  There are plenty of people who don't have kids to date if someone can foresee it being an issue.  They need to be honest.

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
    image

    PM me for the new blog address!
  • image achase123:

    Ugh, this is the double edged sword.  You never want to introduce children too soon, however, sometimes you never know how someone will be around children until they are actually there. 

    This. In my short dating experience I found I could tell from the way a man reacted to my schedule. I am not free often, usually one night a week and that is not even a sure thing! DD might get sick or the sitter might cancel. Once a week is cool at first, but after some time passes and I am not available for spur of the moment dates or can't go too late, or to most mid week events... well it sinks in what it is like to have a child.

    Because I put my DD's needs first and can't jump at every invite a guy has a better idea how a schedule with a child works. This is not a guarentee by any means, but it did weed out a couple guys before my last serious BF.

    Words that changed my life: "...your husband has been arrested..."
    [My Blog]

    peeking
    Visit Top Mommy Blogs To Vote For Me


    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • I agree with PP.  This is def a double edged sword.  Its tough being a dating mom.  Some people just arent ready to handle the responsibility that comes with children.  Its def tough b/c your torn between waiting to expose them to each other until your sure its serious or long term but i know for myself, I couldnt really know if someone had real long term potential without seeing how they interact with my daughter. 
  • This is exactly the reason why I chose to introduce DS to FF fairly early. That, and the fact that DS was only 15 months old. I knew the idea of being a mom was VERY different from the reality of it, and I didn't want to waste my time with someone who couldn't handle it...no matter how great it was for me. My son is my priority. Thankfully for me (and DS), FF has come into our lives with open arms and has embraced the idea of being a step-dad wholeheartedly. I consider myself extremely lucky.
    image
    Pregnancy Ticker
  • I think you can tell by the way the person asks you about the kid most of the time. For example, I went on a date with one guy who asked a lot of questions about being in labor as opposed to my kid. I knew he wasn't going to be good with kids. I dated another who asked a lot of questions about how "hard" having a kid must be. While I appreciated that he was open to learning about my life as a mom, every question made it seem like a chore. I dated another who had a sister who was a single mom. I felt like he would get it, but he just wasn't a good fit for me in other ways. None of those men had children of their own. None of them met ds.

    The only person I dated that met ds is my bf (soon to be fi -- we are working with the jeweler now!), and he doesn't have kids. He volunteers with a boy scout troop and takes them on overnight trips. While the parents are there and his scouts are a bit older than ds, he does understand that you don't always sleep and your kid will always take priority. His best friend was a single dad, so he knows how hard that can be from him -- he didn't need to ask me about how hard it was. He would ask me about ds' interests and how he was doing at school and that kind of thing. When he knew I was up all night with a sick ds, he'd ask how he could make my life easier. And this was all before he met ds.

    Once I knew he was good with the idea of a kid being around, I got nervous about his family's reaction to my ds. Which also turned out to be just fine. They now invite ds to family dinners and such. I think you not only have to assess if the person you are dating is ok with your whole package, but also if they are close to their family, how their family will treat your kid.

    It's hard, but I found taking about ds and seeing reactions and what things the man asks about was a good tell tale sign.

    And a man with kids can have the same reaction as the one your friend dated who bailed. I have a friend who is a single mom and dated a single dad. After a year, and after their kids met, he decided dating another single parent was too hard to juggle and he bailed.

    folc4evernadayshort+sassy
  • All this kids talk makes me realize how i had no idea what I was getting into with XH. I woke up at his house- 19, hung over, and dressed in his giant t shirt - and walked into the living room to see his 3 year old watching spongebob. He introduced me as his friend, and didnt even ask me to get dressed or hint to go home... I figured that out my pretty little self...
     I don't know if the boy's mother knew this was going on, but I know how XH is now and it makes me sick to think that, yeah, he's probably still pulling the same sht. Daddy's got a lot of "friends".

    Vacation
  • Let me preface this by saying that I have no intention whatsoever of exposing DS to my dating life in any way. I only go out when he is with his dad so he has no clue about any of it. It's going to stay that way until I have a long term and serious relationship.

    This question has come up with a friend of mine and it has made me wonder...She introduced her serious boyfriend to her kids after about 6-8 months. They were planning on getting married. He had no experience with children but had no problem with it... until they met. He left because he realized that being with a mother of young kids wasn't right for him. She is obviously crushed and has decided not to date anyone without kids from now on.

    If you have kids would you date someone with no experience with kids?

    My now husband and I dated casually WITH my four year old daughter. Casually meaning there was no kissing or hugging or anything like that it was him getting to know me and my daughter and us getting to know him. I let him decide if he wanted to go on actual dates after that. (We would meet at a park and walk and talk and play or go bowling... that sorta thing). My daughter never questioned it because she just considered him a friend of Mommy's and it made sure there was no mis-communication between him and my daughter. He'd never had any kids of his own but he REALLY liked me and wanted to go out. I was still having trust issues so that was how I dealt with the situation. As it turned out after about 3 months of us having casual dates with my daughter we moved on to serious dates without her. When we got into a serious relationship we'd have 1/2 and 1/2 dates with and without her.

    Not seeing the child till there is talk of marriage can be risky for all involved and probably wasn't the best way to go about things. Dating people without kids has its risk and its rewards. I got lucky. 

    Tell your friend to try just 'hanging out' with someone she likes with the child beforehand. Being upfront and making sure any SO or potential SO understands that you're a package deal will prevent broken hearts. :) 
    =((
  • I have done something similar to PP with regards to DS.  I went on dates when he was with his father and we hung out as friends when he was with me.  DS not getting on with someone I could have a serious relationship with is a deal breaker for me and I don't want to get to the stage where things are serious and we are talking about marriage before discovering that DS really doesn't like them, or they just don't get on, or SO suddenly realizes what he's getting himself into.

    It's not easy when kids are involved.  
  • Yes, I would date someone who doesn't have children nor a lot of experience with children.  However, I would absolutely make sure this person is on the same page as I am regarding children, family, discipline, etc.

    I would never introduce someone to my child until I had met their family, seen how they interact and maintain their own personal relationships.  You don't have to be a parent already in order to be good with children and potentially a good step-parent.

    I have someone in my life who has not yet my daughter, but I know he will be amazing with her.  He previously dated a young single mother and was very involved in her son's life.  (Bio-dad was not in the picture.)  He maintained a steady relationship with the child long after they broke up, supporting him, regular visitation, etc for over a year.  He only stopped because the mother got back together with the child's bio-dad, and they asked that this man step back in order for the father to be able to have a relationship with his child.  

    Knowing all of this, and having known this man when he was going through this experience, gave me a huge boost of confidence in knowing that he will be the type of self-less parent that I would want for a partner.  He works hard, he believes in providing for his family both emotionally, mentally and financially.  He's supportive, kind, encouraging, reliable, calm and loving.  

    The man in my life has had to deal with me cancelling plans, running out on dates, etc all because my daughter needed me.  He has had to be flexible and understanding when it comes to making plans because things can change for me at a moments notice.  My ex's schedule is all over the place and can make co-parenting a challenge, but so far my guy has been able to roll with it easily.  

    I feel that if a man cannot have the patience and enough love to support me in co-parenting with my ex, and putting my daughters needs first, then I would never continue the relationship nor take it to the level that he would meet my child.

  • You may want to consider not dating anyone until your son is an adult.  The divorce rate for people with kids who remarry is 70%.  Would you want your son to have a second male adult leave him?
    Your life is about making the best life for him....
  • I'm going to put in my opinion from being the girlfriend of a single dad. He and his ex made an agreement (not that she honored her part) not to introduce anyone to their daughter until they had been divorced for at least 1 year. When I met him, they had only been divorced 4 months. It made it challenging for us only being able to see each other on the weekends because he had her during the week. But we talked on a regular basis. Eventually she knew that daddy had a special friend and she knew of me and my name. But there was no emotional attachment. Several months later, I finally met her. I had to go away for work for a month & he and I started having issues then. When I got back I got to spend more time with him and his daughter. And I got to see a side of him that I hadn't seen before. I didn't agree with his parenting style. Not saying it was wrong, but there were things he did that I didn't agree with. Add that to the other issues we were having, I realized that we weren't a right fit long term for each other. So I would say, don't bring in kids too soon so they don't get involved emotionally, but don't wait until you are talking about marriage either to introduce a child to someone, because then you will get more hurt if things don't work once you see each other interacting with the child.
Sign In or Register to comment.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards