If you are a lady that likes dating older men, chances are you have or soon will come across a single dad you’ll like. But dating a single dad comes with different challenges even though it can be a great experience. Apart from the usual problems all relationships come with, the kids make this a special case. Here are some tips for dating a single dad that will help keep the waters calm.
It Will Be Challenging
When you date someone, their lives slowly become a part of you. Once you decide to become serious with a guy who has kids, you will become a mother of sorts, making this a very different experience from all the relationships you’ve had before. There is need to be responsible and so the guy will be less carefree than you would expect. The good part about this is that if he is taking care of his kids, he probably has commitment and responsibility.
He Won’t Have Much Time
If he is not working, he will probably be spending time with the kids and you won’t get as much time as you would from a single guy. But spending time with him and the kids is not a good idea unless you are serious about the relationship. It can be emotionally harmful to the children to get used to you then see you disappear. Unless you are in for the long haul, there is no need to be introduced to the kids.
The Mother is Still a Factor
You have to acknowledge that the mother of his kids is still a part of his life. Usually, there is natural animosity in such cases. But try to avoid that as much as possible. Do not automatically make her your enemy.
It is possible that there will be lots of fights between the mother and your boyfriend depending on how they broke up. You will need to be supportive and understanding. However, try not to intervene unnecessarily in the issues between them. It is especially a good idea never to bad mouth the mother before the kids, or even before the dad.
Your boyfriend will need to speak to his ex from time to time and you will need to respect that. In fact, you would do well to make an effort to be in good terms with the mother.
A great way to be in good terms with her is to be good to her kids. You just have to be fair to them and acknowledge the fact that they exist. This is particularly important if you are thinking of becoming their step mum.
Try as much as possible never to be the reason he does not spend time with his kids. You will probably find that the kids have lots of his attention. That is normal. Do not try to compete with them, making it a case of me vs. them.
Your Friends and Family
Especially if you do not have kids of your own, your friends and family might not at first be supportive of dating a single dad. It can be uncomfortable for your family to see you dating someone who was married before and divorced, especially if you have never gone through such yourself.
The only way to handle this is to expect it and be patient with them. It may take some time before they warm up to him, but they eventually will. You may need to take things slow.
Especially if the kids are in their teens, they may not like you at first. Most kids of their age do have a decent idea of what is going on and what they would want. Normally, they would want to see their parents together, and they will see you as the person preventing that. Don’t be surprised if they bundle all their problems together and blame them on you.
The way to handle this is with patience. Never try to force yourself on them and just let everything flow naturally. Show them care and love, but do not try to out-do or replace their mum.
It Can Be a Great Experience
One thing you can expect from a single dad is maturity, responsibility and commitment especially if they are doing a really good job of looking after their kids. This might be a great choice if you want someone serious.