Having Children is undoubtedly one of the most amazing things you can do with your life. For once you’re thinking solely of another human being and their complete dependence on you. However, if you don’t have kids and are dating someone with kids than there are certain things you need to consider. Even if you have kids yourself you have to behave differently around someone else’s children.
Understanding that the situation isn’t just hard for you and your potential Partner, but that the children involved are going to have their grievances as well. So, with that in mind here are our top five tips for dating someone with kids.
Their Kids Will Always Come First
This should come as no surprise to any thinking person out there, but sometimes it has to be reiterated that your significant others children are their priority. The connection parents build with their children is one of the strongest bonds on this Earth and nothing is going to come in between that. It doesn’t matter if they’re sick, being naughty or just want their parents affection there is always going to be the chance that a child can ‘ruin’ your romantic evening.
The key to getting to grips with this is not letting it bother you and understanding that of course, they’re going to focus on their children before anything else. There is another human being who is entirely dependant on that person and any good parent would always put that first. So, always keep in mind that it doesn’t matter what plans you have as your significant others children are always going to be the top priority.
Take Things Slow
Ensuring that you handle the situation with emotional delicacy is incredibly important when dating someone with children. Not just for the benefit of the kids either as your partner may need this time to adjust.
Always think that they have had a partner before and it must have been extremely serious, otherwise they wouldn’t have had children. That’s going to cause issues for both your partner and their children. Your partner may not be able to trust straight away; personally or regarding their children, but that is a natural process when you have gone through a serious break-up. Furthermore, those children are always going to have a greater allegiance to their other parent, so you can’t storm in guns blazing and ask them to call you Ma or Pa.
Ultimately, it is about handling things with care whether it’s regarding your partner or their children. If things aren’t advancing at the rate you would like them too than just remember they have other things to think about. In addition, if you haven’t met their kids than don’t worry about that either; if you’re a genuine fit for their family than you will at some point.
This encompasses everything when you’re dating someone with children, once again it refers to both your partner and their kids. If your partner or their children seem to be acting weirdly or slightly out of turn than sometimes you have to grin and bear it. There are a lot of things that can be happening behind the scenes that you’re not aware of and what may seem odd to you can be a perfectly reasonable reaction to something upsetting.
The best way to do this is to try and act as impartial as you can when it comes to your partners family issues and act accordingly based on how well you know their kids as to whether you should step in or not. Becoming a quiet shoulder to cry on and learn to listen more as the likelihood is that you have no experience regarding dealing with children. Think before you speak and you can’t go far wrong.
You’re Not the Disciplinarian
This tip is less for younger children and for if you’re dating someone who has older children. One thing you have to understand is that a family will have been doing things a certain way, especially if their kids are teenagers. Therefore, you can’t just barge in and act like the parental figure, maybe over time you can, but more often than not you have to realize you’re not going to be that replacement. You have to handle things with care and allow the parent to discipline their children.
These things are incredibly important especially if you haven’t had kids of your own. You have to understand that there is an existing family dynamic that you have to fit into. It is not something that you can alter your ideas as that isn’t how things are done. Naturally, with older children, you have to take a lighter touch. They’re at a point where they have opinions and abstract thoughts, so running in blind is never a good option.
Evidently, there is wiggle room for every situation. Young children will be different once you’ve spent time with them and built that bond, but you’re still never going to have full parental capabilities. Understanding that you’re being let into a family is important and that they have functioned without you before.
Their Ex May Still Be in the Picture
Their children have to come from somewhere and if their ex is doing the decent thing to stick around and get to know their children than that is beautiful. It is hard enough for children that their parents have split up let alone having to deal with not seeing the other one for whatever reason. Because of this you always have to keep in mind that they will be about and no matter what your opinion is of them remember that they’re still your partner’s children’s parent.
This means that you should never badmouth the other parent; whether the children are there or not. It doesn’t set up a good foundation for pleasant interactions as your partner is always going to be thinking about what you said. Furthermore, why make life harder for yourself? Ask yourself does this person really matter to me? If not then you should be taking into consideration the feelings of your partner and their children.
In addition, always act pleasant whenever you’re around them, even if they’re rude towards you. You don’t want to create unnecessary conflict between each other, especially when there are children involved. Ensuring that your partner’s children continue to be bought up in a happy and gentle environment shows that you truly care. Raving about your partner’s ex only inflates your ego and sense of self-worth.
Those are our top tips for dating someone with kids. Just remember that it is all about putting those children and your partner first before your own sense of self. When dating someone with children you must have an air of maturity and selflessness. Even though you aren’t taking on full parental responsibilities you’re still affecting those children’s lives and you always need to be mindful of them.
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