Relationships are hard enough work with just two of you involved, throw children into the mix and you could be flirting with disaster. If your man comes as part of a dad package deal with one or more little ones, here’s what you need to know going in:
You won’t come first
Nor should you expect to. As a father, your partner’s first priority will always be his children. That means if a soccer match clashes with the oh-so-romantic lunch you had planned, be prepared to put on some wellies and join the cheering section. And let’s face it, if he didn’t put his children first, that’s not someone you’d want to be in a relationship with anyway.
Be prepared to wait
Most single parents don’t want to subject their children to a stream of potential partners, which means they’ll most likely be cautious about introducing them to you. Don’t be offended if he waits at least six months or so before introducing you, and when he does, take it for the compliment it is.
Take it slow
Even the Von Trapp children took a while to warm up to Maria, so don’t expect an instant happy family. By all means, reach out, but be prepared for tensions to rise and tempers to flare. You’re a new face and an unknown element, and developing a relationship with his children will take time.
You’re not their mother
Even though mom and dad aren’t together anymore, their children will still be loyal to both parents. You could initially be seen as a replacement, which may be a breeding ground for resentment and anger. Go into the situation with eyes wide open, take time to build their trust and position yourself as an addition to the family, rather than a substitute.
Share the love
Positivity manifests more positivity, so the more love and care you can show your loved one and his children, the more you’ll receive in return. Of course, you’ll slip up, of course, you’ll make mistakes, but if you keep a positive mindset and come from a place of love, dating a man with children could be one of the most rewarding decisions you ever make.
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