If you settled for dating a single dad, you have to bear in mind that these people are in a category by themselves. They are not like guys who haven’t been married yet – they have been places and they know things, yet they decided to give it another try. Just like other folks, though, they don’t know all the rules yet; nonetheless, there are traits which are characteristic of the tribe, and you should be up to them to be a success with a single dad.
First and foremost, a single dad has his child(ren) uppermost on his mind, so he is not free with his time. Much hangs on how many kids he has, what their ages are and how much time they spend at home. These considerations shape his life to a great extent, so a woman who doesn’t have kids yet may fail to understand the guy’s motives governing his behavior. She will need insight and awareness, so some tips will come in handy.
When dating a single man with children, you will find these hints helpful for avoiding relationship pitfalls.
Assume a supportive attitude.
With a single dad, situations can be vastly different. When the children are taken care of by his ex-wife, he may be free with his time and devote much of it to developing your relationship. Then again, his may be a tight schedule, and on other days he hasn’t an hour to spare. His plans are apt to change overnight; he can be out of touch for a few days on end, and these considerations require understanding. You ought to be ready to put up with sudden changes and dropouts.
These instances put him across as a responsible person who lets his girlfriend down for good reason, so if you won’t tolerate this sort of things, think twice about keeping up the relationship.
Don’t hurry to mother his children.
A relationship complicated by children requires a special approach, deliberate and slow-paced. You have to be extra sensitive with kids around. It’s fine that you feel like becoming their new mother, yet you should let the children show just how intimate you can be with them at the moment. Accept them as you find them, and don’t be in a hurry to replace their mom. Behave naturally, participate in their activities and avoid getting too close without an intimation that you can do it.
Don’t forget the divorced wife may remain in the picture.
Your partner and his ex have a history behind them, and it’s only natural they should want to meet now and then to discuss mutual issues. It can be to the advantage of your current relationship if they finally come to settle some unraveled points between them. If you feel it is troublesome in some kind, talk it over with your boyfriend – you might need him to be open about their meetings and the reasons behind them, so you can understand clearly what is going on.
He is also other things besides a parent.
Parenting constituting a big part of his life, he will certainly place a strong emphasis on that, but actually, he has other facets of his personality. If your relationship has developed so far as to move in together and be a full-fledged family, mind that you may start to discover still unexplored sides of his nature.
Avoid pushing a single dad into a more committed relationship.
Well, this rule applies to all men and all relationships, but it can be more destructive with a man with kids. They are already a family, let them set the pace thereby showing that everyone is comfortable with the arrangement. He is harder to put to it to arrange things and make them run, and you will show your consideration by playing along with him.
Make sure he has enough space.
You know you are going to become part of a system that has been functioning for quite q while, and there’s going to be adaptations on both sides. See to it that he is adapting to the new situation on his own terms though it means he can make himself unavailable at times. Changes can be tiresome, but that doesn’t mean they are negative. He is moving in the right direction, only he can’t do without diversions. It isn’t a sign of his indifference; it’s just that his responsibilities impinge on his quality time with you. Let him have space if you see he needs it, show that you don’t want him to get torn apart on your behalf.
Don’t rush into the relationship.
It would be a mistake to think you’ve got it made quickly – especially if your man is fresh out of a relationship. It may have left him with burning feelings of anger, guilt, memories of situations not settled properly, and you might get the butt end of it. You will have to make sure that he has shaken off the remains of the previous attachment and is free from old issues. You both may have the makings of a marvelous partnership, yet the necessity of living down some residual problems can get him involved pretty heavily so he doesn’t quite realize what is happening to him now. Share your feelings and your attitudes, keeping in mind that you are moving at a different speed.
Dating a single dad can be a lot of fun and incredibly rewarding. You’re with someone who takes family and responsibilities seriously and is capable of great love. But single dads also have more people in their lives and that can take some adjusting to if you’re not used to it. Be open-minded, enjoy getting to know him, and see where the relationship takes you.
Making it stick with a single father is a different proposition that brings its own rewards: you know that he is a family man who understands love, support, and mutual care. The problem is his life is inseparably tied with those of other people, and to him, the adjustment comes much harder. You have to remain open, delight in having a good time together and allow the relationship to develop naturally – you may come to like it that way!