Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Single parent and dating

How do single parents deal with dating and the potential heart break for their children? How hard is it to let someone into your life, and your children’s lives knowing that there is no guaranty they will be there in a year or even next week. I am seeing my friends having to make the decision to date or not. When children involved there is more risk of failed relationships and heartache all around. You also have to think about whom you are letting into your home and life.

When do you bring the person you are dating into your children’s lives? Is it better to develop a relationship with out involving your children or develop one with your children? There are pros and cons for both of these. If you develop a relationship with out involving your kids suddenly you are involved with someone your kids don’t know. What if the person you are involved with does not like your kids. You are in love but they don’t want your kids or your kids hate them. Or on the other hand you develop a relationship involving your kids, your kids form attachments and suddenly things are not going so will in the relationship. How does that affect your kids? Is it worth the risk of hurting your children?

One friend has decided that she cannot take the chance of her children developing a relationship with a father figure only to loose him like they did their father. She would like to date but knows that with three boys, one about to be a teenager, the chance of being able to form a lasting relationship is slim right now. The boys are going to either resent any male she brings into the relationship or try to bond with him to fill the void their Father has left. The potential conflict and pain is just not worth it right now.

Another is currently dealing with the break up of her year and a half relationship, watching her children go through the same pain they did when her and their dad went there separate ways. At lest with their Dad there is the chance of seeing him as he does have visitations if he wants. The problem is that they have seen more of the boyfriend then the Dad in the last two years and have bonded with him. They are having to go through all that pain and feeling of rejection again. And the boyfriend is not going to be coming over for visitations. They keep asking about him, “When is he coming back?” “Why does he not love them anymore?”

One friend gets his son on weekends, and he is stuck between his girlfriend and his son. The girlfriend is somewhat resentful that weekends always involve a third party, that all their plans revolve around the demands of his son’s mother. When they have to pick him up, drop him off. Suddenly they have to take him, or they don’t get him and their plans change. It is a big stressor on the relationship dealing with the disruptions and not being able to be spontaneous. The father is worried about what would happen if they have children. How will that impact his son, and how will his girlfriend treat his son once she has her own kids. It is a huge balancing act.

Then there is the question of whom are you actually letting into your home and giving access to your children. You take a chance every time you involve someone new into your child or children’s lives. Are they really going to have your child’s best interest at hart? There are people who prey on children, are you and your child a target? When you are a parent you have to protect your children, who else will? It can be incredibly difficult when you have children and want to date. You cannot always go off and do what you want or be with whom you want. A person is not just dating you, but your whole family package.

Does this mean that there is no hope, just find a cave and crawl into it until your kids are old enough to live on there own? No. It just means that when you have kids it changes dating and relationships. It changes how you go about developing a relationship and how you deal with break ups. It is not all about you and your feelings anymore; you have to think about your children as well. I don’t know how people do it. I think I would be one to stop dating until my kids moved out. It is hard enough to raise kids or develop a lasting relationship let alone trying to do both at the same time.


  1. Great thought. Its really very hards to manage & enjoy their life for a single person.

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