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Marvier
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02 Nov 2021, 3:24 pm

As a man w/children, both grown and young, I say, "Yes!!". It's a matter of personal choice and preference. Here's my perspective on the ins and outs of dating single parents.

- Kids typically mean shared time and that requires understanding that availability is different than childless partners.
- You have to be able to accept an eventual meeting and participation in kids lives. Parents are naturally protective of their kids and usually only introduce them to partners when the relationship is solid and going somewhere.
- Kids are fun! Many grown-ups have forgotten how to have fun, but kids bring that right back.
- Good parents, acknowledging that not all are good and caring, are often good at relationships. The qualities of good parenting are closely aligned to the qualities of being a good romantic partner.
- Kids can be scary and intimidating for many. Before having kids I would turn into a blubbering ball of wax around them. I had no idea how to act, talk, interact, behave, or just about anything. There are two ways to overcome this if it's important, first is having kids, but obviously that is not an option for all, and second is exposure.

So while my bias is clear, it is certainly a matter of comfort, preference and personal choice. For me, the kid part is not nearly as intimidating as the actual dating part!!



Ettina
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04 Nov 2021, 4:28 pm

It wouldn't be a deal-breaker for me. In fact, since I'm pregnant, it'd be nice to get a firsthand look at what kind of parent they are.

I would fully expect them to prioritize the kids over me (and understand me doing the same). If they decided to prioritize me, I'd dump them. I don't want someone who puts a partner ahead of kids in my child's life.



IsabellaLinton
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04 Nov 2021, 4:32 pm

Ettina wrote:
It wouldn't be a deal-breaker for me. In fact, since I'm pregnant, it'd be nice to get a firsthand look at what kind of parent they are.

I would fully expect them to prioritize the kids over me (and understand me doing the same). If they decided to prioritize me, I'd dump them. I don't want someone who puts a partner ahead of kids in my child's life.


Great answer, and I'm glad to hear it!

I'm a single mother and that's how I need my partner to be as well. He doesn't have children.


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rse92
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05 Nov 2021, 11:14 am

Kitty4670 wrote:
I’m 51, it’s not easy finding men without children.


I would think that there would be men around your age whose children would be grown, or grown enough, who don't really need raising or who can have a mature relationship with you.

I was (involutarily) divorced at 51 with 21 and 18 year old daughters. When I would meet a woman I would often tell her "I have a mother and my kids have a mother, so I'm not looking to fill either position."



BrambleberryPie
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13 Jan 2022, 8:33 pm

cyberdad wrote:
Nope! you are opening yourself to helping him carrying his burdens.


Don't do it. I just ended up in hospital after burning myself out loving a man and his young daughter. They both have ASD and ADHD. I have ASD. She developed so many phobias around me which left me jobless, homeless and in hospital. You will be left feeling really vulnerable with no control over your own life. :roll:



cyberdad
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13 Jan 2022, 9:22 pm

BrambleberryPie wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
Nope! you are opening yourself to helping him carrying his burdens.


Don't do it. I just ended up in hospital after burning myself out loving a man and his young daughter. They both have ASD and ADHD. I have ASD. She developed so many phobias around me which left me jobless, homeless and in hospital. You will be left feeling really vulnerable with no control over your own life. :roll:


Yes it's never as romantic as in the movies. In a worst case scenario the man is looking for free childcare and somebody to help pay the bills.

Only would work if both parties have kids and go half/half on everything.



The Grand Inquisitor
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13 Jan 2022, 10:09 pm

Given that I haven't even been able to participate in the biological process that can create children yet, or ever had a girlfriend at all, I feel like dating someone with kids is too advanced for where I'm at with my dating life.

In any case, the idea of pouring so much of my time, effort and resources into raising someone else's children is unappealing. The idea of my needs being put below a prospective partner's children is unappealing. I'm not sure if I want to be a parent, but I know I don't want to be a step parent.

The only ways I might ever date someone with kids is if I was extremely exceptionally compatible with that person (and even then probably not), or if I had no other dating prospects, and that was the only way I'd ever get to date someone.



IsabellaLinton
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14 Jan 2022, 1:22 am

There are lots of great men who are single dads. Lets not forget about them - even though dating a person with kids adds a layer of complexity to the relationship, regardless of anyone's gender.


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rse92
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14 Jan 2022, 9:40 am

When I was between marriages and doing online dating I used this line in my profile:

"My children have a mother and I have a mother. I am not looking to fill either position".

Women noticed that.

For what it's worth, most of the women I dated between marriages, including the one who would become my second wife, had children. It is a fact of life after a certain age.



Fnord
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14 Jan 2022, 9:50 am

Kitty4670 wrote:
Would you date a man or woman with two children?
I dated a woman with children, and found it . . . difficult.

• No Privacy: Trying to have some one-on-one time with the mother was wasted effort, at best.

• Hostile Children: Being suddenly attacked by a four-year old (who drew blood) because I was sitting too close to his mommy.  He threw a toy truck at my head and shouted, "Get away from Mommy!  You're not Daddy!"

• Children Were THE Priority: A single sniffle from a child was enough to cancel a date.  Also, unless I could afford a babysitter, the children came along with us.

• I was expected to help with the rent: End of relationship.  'Nuff said.



Nades
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14 Jan 2022, 11:27 am

Fnord wrote:
Kitty4670 wrote:
Would you date a man or woman with two children?
I dated a woman with children, and found it . . . difficult.

• No Privacy: Trying to have some one-on-one time with the mother was wasted effort, at best.

• Hostile Children: Being suddenly attacked by a four-year old (who drew blood) because I was sitting too close to his mommy.  He threw a toy truck at my head and shouted, "Get away from Mommy!  You're not Daddy!"

• Children Were THE Priority: A single sniffle from a child was enough to cancel a date.  Also, unless I could afford a babysitter, the children came along with us.

• I was expected to help with the rent: End of relationship.  'Nuff said.


Same. I find it difficult to ever make such an arrangement work. Kids are also the perfect excuse to cancel, rearrange, feel tired and anything in between whether genuine or not. Mostly it's genuine but occasionally the excuse turned out to be a lie and once lied to it hammers home just how easy kids can be used in such a malicious way.

Took ten dates to finally have some alone time with one and eventually we still went back to her house to screaming kids. Kids also have a tendancy to dominate all convo and they're usually a "package" deal. Not only does the partner need to be taken on, but often the kids need "vetting" and taking on in some capacity. If they're older or well behaved it's not that bad sometimes they're horrid.

Kids from a single father however might be different as the societal expectations are different. Broadly speaking, a guy is either a deadbeat dad and their kids are never an issue as a result or they're more inclined ensure they're supported.



BrambleberryPie
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14 Jan 2022, 2:56 pm

cyberdad wrote:
Too many stories of step parents sacrificing for their step-kids who more often than not hate them but take their money/time/resources. But in addition the sole parent may be involved in ongoing legal proceedings over child maintenance and custody, It's messy and not worth it. In a worst case scenario the sole parent might be actually looking for a partner for financial reasons.


I agree. This sounds like what I am going through now. I just came out of hospital due to the stress and am tens of thousands of pounds down. As much as I love my partner's daughter, you can't control all the messiness around you. You will be expected to cook, clean, pay for your step kid and love them unconditionally. However you won't be allowed to discipline them when they disrespect you, even if their own parents shout at the kids or discipline them in same way. You don't get that green card, even when they show you major disrespect or you have to have harsh words with them to protect them. For example my SD would pull the dog's tails and wake them up constantly. I had words with her as I was worried she would get bitten - I have seen the consequences of that before. I was only trying to protect her from herself, but my partner at the time undermined me in front of her and said 'it was too much' and my words would scare her. :roll: I said she would be more scared if the dogs bit her and he would be scared if the police came to house under dangerous dogs act and took the dogs away because she was tormenting them!



cyberdad
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14 Jan 2022, 8:08 pm

BrambleberryPie wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
Too many stories of step parents sacrificing for their step-kids who more often than not hate them but take their money/time/resources. But in addition the sole parent may be involved in ongoing legal proceedings over child maintenance and custody, It's messy and not worth it. In a worst case scenario the sole parent might be actually looking for a partner for financial reasons.


I agree. This sounds like what I am going through now. I just came out of hospital due to the stress and am tens of thousands of pounds down. As much as I love my partner's daughter, you can't control all the messiness around you. You will be expected to cook, clean, pay for your step kid and love them unconditionally. However you won't be allowed to discipline them when they disrespect you, even if their own parents shout at the kids or discipline them in same way. You don't get that green card, even when they show you major disrespect or you have to have harsh words with them to protect them. For example my SD would pull the dog's tails and wake them up constantly. I had words with her as I was worried she would get bitten - I have seen the consequences of that before. I was only trying to protect her from herself, but my partner at the time undermined me in front of her and said 'it was too much' and my words would scare her. :roll: I said she would be more scared if the dogs bit her and he would be scared if the police came to house under dangerous dogs act and took the dogs away because she was tormenting them!


I know a woman who after divorce is currently living with a man with 3 kids in her home. While the kids mostly live with their mother, they come and stay with the father in the woman's home. She has to work fulltime, cook for them, clean their mess (they deliberately don't listen to her) and she has to put up with their snide remarks. She lends her car to the boyfriend (who claims he lost everything including his car after divorce proceedings) who uses it to pick up and drop his kids.

Here's the thing! the moment she tells the kids off! or tries to discipline them the man steps in and says "look they are going through a tough time, give them some slack". It's a no win situation. The children are clever enough to pick up that their new mother is on her "best behaviour" so they can pull her strings and get away with it because children are always seen as victims in a divorce. But they want to punish their father for picking a new partner to replace their mother.

I am sure there are good news stories out there of children who bond with their new mother but the ones hear about never end well.



KMCIURA
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15 Jan 2022, 1:20 pm

I'll reply as a father of two daughters:

If they are in late teenage years or adult - it will be OK, mostly. You have to accept few things, though - kids would be part if your life, even though you won't be that much exposed to them. Also, if they would go through a hard time, from health, psychological or financial perspective, fully expect the partner to drop everything, rush to help them, no matter the cost and being fixated on the issue until it resolves. This is what a loving parent does.

But when it comes to younger kids? If it is a loving father, you would be a second priority. After all, from a parents' perspective, there are only so many times to see your kid performing on stage at school, spend summer vacation with them, take them for ice cream, help them with homework, see them graduating etc.

And no good parent wants to let their children down.

Meanwhile, most parents already experienced dates, romantic evenings and so on.

All of the above is true for people who have custody, but I think even more true for people who do not and are seeing their kids less frequently. If they love them, they won't miss any chance to spent time with them, because their time together is limited. You two made plans for the weekend, but mother of the children calls him and ask to look after them because something came up? Consider your plans cancelled. Having enough of being a second grade priority and want to have a talk with him to keep things more balanced? You might as well pack your things and leave, sparing both of you a fruitless discussion and drama.

The fact is that normally, you would love to have a partner who is responsible, caring and loving to his children. This is one of qualities which show they are a good person, after all. Thing is, this completely derails you chances of having a relationship even remotely close to a case when both parties do not have offspring.

The other side of the coin: if a person is a sh***y, uncaring parent, you would have a much easier time having them for yourself, but at the same time - would you really like to date someone who doesn't view his children as the most important people in his life? I see this as a major red flag.

There's only one possible solution, if you want to get into a relationship with a decent guy who does have children. You must be ready to give them some love, too. I do not mean that it needs to be a motherly kind of love - but you have to accept them, be their friend, give them warmth and care for them. If you will reject them, the relationship won't last long. In a healthy family, parents place needs of the children on top. Then come needs the partner and their own. You cannot expect a parent to change this attitude.



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15 Jan 2022, 1:52 pm

My daughters are both adults now with their own families. Women I date can choose to interact with them or not - either way is not a deal breaker for me. People need to do what they are most comfortable doing.


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cyberdad
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15 Jan 2022, 10:15 pm

This is the kind of thanks you'll more than likely get from your step kids

https://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/real- ... e225b2dc8a

It's just not worth it....