Monday, August 24, 2015

Dating the Single Parent

We all have our preferences of what we look for in another person. Many people would only date someone with a particular status. By status, I mean single, divorced, divorced with kids, or widowed. Some people prefer to be with someone who's never been married. Some people prefer to be with someone who already has kids. Everyone has a preference of which status they're open to dating. In this article, I wanted to talk about dating the single parent and what to expect. Some people are open to dating a single parent, but have no idea what's in store. By reading this article, I'm hoping to give you some insight into the mind of a single parent and whether or not you're up for dating one. 

If you meet someone that's a single parent, there's a lot of things you should and shouldn't expect. You should expect that they're always going to put their kids first, before you, or anyone else. You should expect that there will be times that they can't go out on a date, etc., because they have their kids and can't or don't want to get a babysitter. You should expect that their kids could get sick, and they might have to cancel plans with you at the last minute. You should expect that they might have plans during the weekend, like sports or activities that their kids might be involved in, and they're going to want to be a part of those activities. You should expect that it might be difficult to go away on trips with some single parents, because they don't want to leave their kids. 

Some things you shouldn't expect are to have every bit of their attention. You shouldn't expect the spontaneity that you might get with someone that doesn't have kids. You shouldn't expect them to be available to date you, without any notice in advance. Babysitters or family, etc. need notice to watch kids, and don't always accept last minute. It's better to be a planner and give the single parent some notice. You shouldn't expect their kids to instantly love you and want to be around you. You shouldn't expect to have long telephone conversations, when they have their kids with them. 

Single parents to stay away from: 

1. If they don't get along or are not even cordial with the other parent.

2. If they're selfish and put themselves before their kids. 

3. They don't like children (Believe it or not, I've seen single parents like this, yet they have kids themselves). 

4. If you don't like their parenting style. Let's say that their style of parenting is permissive, and you're hoping to raise your future kids with authoritative parenting. 

5. If their kids don't like you. 

6. If you don't like their kids. 

7. If their kids misbehave, and often, seem out of control.

8. If they don't live a balanced life, and don't make time for you. 

9. If you see that the parent isn't warm, nurturing, and loving with their kids. 

10. If they're abusive in any way to their kids.

Some positive things about dating the single parent: 

1. If you're hoping to have kids one day, you can see what type of parent that they already are. It gives you a taste of what to expect, if you plan to have a future with them. 

2. If you're the type that likes to be around family, joy, and fun activities, that usually comes with the package of dating someone with kids. 

3. It keeps you young. It may bring out the little boy or little girl in you. 

4. If you love big families, and decide to stay with them long-term, you'll be going into an instant big family. It can actually be quite beautiful. 

5. You may get a taste of parenting, before actually becoming one, which will be good for you later on, if you decide to have kids of your own. 

Some extra tips:

1. If you meet the other parent, you must be respectful, courteous, polite, and kind to them. You must have poise and maintain a peaceful and calm relationship with them. If not only for you, but for the person you're dating, in a relationship with, or married to, and for the sake of the kids. 

2. Whether you're dating, in a relationship, or getting married to the single parent, you're not going to be replacing the other parent, and you need to know that. If you're a man, you should act like a father figure and if you're a woman, you should act like a motherly figure. 

3. Don't overstep boundaries and take the lead in parenting their kids, unless you have a conversation with the person you're dating, and there's an understanding in that regard. It has to be a very natural thing, and you can't expect to come into their lives and take over authority. Things take time to develop. 

4. If you're unsure about dating this person for the long-term, and unsure about eventually settling down with them, you shouldn't be spending much time with their kids. If so, you need to be understanding that they won't be as available to you. 

5. To the parents, don't let your kids get attached to someone that you're dating, unless it's someone that you're planning to have a future with. To the people dating a single parent, you have just as much responsibility in not spending too much time with their kids, unless you plan to have a future with their parent. Nothing's worse than kids that get attached to someone that the parent is dating, and then they leave. That would cause unnecessary pain to the kids. 

6. There's nothing wrong with spending time with a single parent and their kids, even if you don't know if you want a future together or not. However, you shouldn't spend too much time with them and their kids together, unless you want to have a future with them. You should limit the time you see their kids to once in a while, so their kids don't get too attached, in case it doesn't work out between you and their parent. 

7. If you're a single parent considering dating another single parent, you should only date them if you have the same parenting style. If you decide to be together for the long term, it can be very challenging raising all of your kids together with different rules and discipline.