Dating as a Single Parent: The Tips Every Single Parent Needs
Dating when you are single and carefree is difficult enough, but when you add children to the equation, things become even harder. As a single parent, you have the responsibility to choose a romantic partner that is not only suitable for you but one that is also suitable for your children. When dating as a single parent, you need to keep certain things in mind, and the following tips for dating as a single parent will help you make the right romantic choices.
Ask your children "what if?" questions
Before you start dating, you need to ask your children how they would feel in certain situations. Ask them "what if?" questions to assess their reactions and start a dialogue: "what if I met a new partner?", "What would you feel?". Such questions will help you prepare your children for the thought of you dating and make the transitions easier. Remember – forming a new family will be easier if everyone is on board, and it is vital for your children will know about things that may come in the future.
Assess your dates and their intentions
When dating as a single parent, you have to be that much more critical towards your dates as to when you were when you had no children. First, you need to set yourself goals that you want to achieve when dating: do you want a committed relationship? Or perhaps a short romance? Whatever the case may be, you need to make sure that you and the people you are dating are on the same page. To do so, ask leading questions and notice if what your dates say coincides with what they are doing – this will help you discover your dates' intentions and compatibility with you.
Keep your dating life out of your children's lives
Children are sensitive humans who are forming a personality, and it is important for them to have security and stability in their lives. To guard your children against anxiety and fear of changes, try to keep your dating life to yourself as much as possible. When you start forming a meaningful romantic relationship, you can introduce the idea to your children slowly and carefully. Tell them that you met a new partner, a partner who loves children, and plan increasingly longer encounters between your children and your partner. Let your children get used to the idea of you dating someone meaningful before meeting that person, and make sure your children know that they always come first.
Make sure you know who you are dating
If you meet potential love interests, it is important to make sure you know who they truly are. when dating as a single parent, you should run a check on potential dates to make sure they told you the truth about themselves. A people search on GoLookUp will help you discover your date's real name, aliases, marital status, employment information, their criminal past, and whether they are registered sex offenders. With all the information in hand, you will know who to date and who may pose a threat to you and your children – people who you should avoid.
Don't force teenagers to welcome your partner
Teenagers move at their own pace, and they need more time when to get comfortable with their parents dating. That is why it is vital for you to give your teenagers time to warm up to your partner and not force encounters on them. Instead, prepare them for your dating and create opportunities for bonding with your partner. For instance, tell your teenager that your partner will be coming over for lunch on a weekend, and give your child the choice of whether to join you or not. Respect their decisions and make sure they feel respected and not forced into doing something they are uncomfortable with.
Acknowledge your children's emotions
Children of all ages need their parents to echo their emotions and acknowledge even negative feelings. When dating, speak to your children and notice how they feel; are they scared of what will happen in the future? Do they miss their other parent? Do they have a problem with your current partner? In either case, talk to your kids and acknowledge their emotions; "I can see that you are afraid", "you are scared to for things to change" and similar phrases will let your children know that you see them and that you care about their emotions. It will help you communicate better and make decisions that everyone can get on board with.
Dating as a single parent is a balancing act like no other; when you decide to get into a relationship with a new person, you also decide to make them a part of your family. It will not be a smooth sail, but if you practice the tips mentioned here, you will encounter more calm seas that stormy weather.