Several years ago when I was dating a single dad, I received a ton of warnings about how difficult it would be. I've also heard women say how it's not a big deal, that it's just like dating a guy who doesn't have a kid; that's absolutely not the case if the guy actually spends time with his child. It's an adjustment and you really have to learn when to step back and when to step forward even more-so than in a regular relationship. If you're interested in a single dad and aren't sure what to expect, there are some tips to help get you started.
Accept that they're a package deal
If the guy cares for his son and they spend time together, there's none of this accepting the dad without accepting the kid nonsense. They're a package deal and if you're willing to welcome the guy into your life, you have to make space for his child as well.
Know his child always comes first
His child is always going to be number one in his life, so nine out of ten times the child is going to come before you. This isn't going to sit well with women who expect to always be the number one priority to the guy they're with. However, when it comes to a dad it's usually not up for debate. Most will tell the woman to accept it or move on.
Be understanding about the ex
Ah the ex. Luckily the mother of my ex's child liked me and vice versa so we actually got along quite well, but I also didn't give the guy grief for talking to her. When the child's mother is in the picture, you have to be accepting of her as well. I know, I know but you don't have a choice in the matter. He'll have to talk to her and see her at least until the child is 18. If you have any serious concerns, bring them up to your guy, but you'll still have to trust him that he'll handle things with her the right way.
There's a really good chance if you reprimand the child or try to act like his mother, things aren't going to go over very well with your guy. If any issues come up, deal with the child in a calm manner but approach your guy with it when you have the chance so he can deal with it instead. The child has a mother and father and they're the ones responsible for discipline and handling problems. Intervene and you could get some backlash.
Make child friendly plans
When you come up with ideas for plans for you and your guy to do, make sure some of them involve his child. Depending on the age level of the kid and his interests, you can go to the zoo, the aquarium, sports games, etc. It'll show your guy you're accepting of both him and his child.
It takes some getting used to when it comes to dating a single dad and you're going to have some bumps along the way, but from personal experience I think it's worth the effort. In many cases, you get new fantastic people in your life that you can make great memories with. However, before you make any time of commitment, make sure you're ready to handle the situation wholeheartedly.
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