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The Challenges of Single Parent Dating

The first thing to remember when you meet the child of your new romantic interest is that this is not a game. While you may be bent on making the relationship work between you and your ideal companion, the child or children involved have a lot to lose or gain and should be treated with respect in the situation. Chances are that they have already experienced the heartache of losing a happy home to divorce or a parent to premature death. Allowing the situation to turn into a battle of wits between you and a kid is neither attractive nor productive.

The second thing to remember is that the role the child plays in the parent's life should be a crucial one. If the single parent seems to take a take-it-or-leave-it attitude where the child is concerned, choosing you above the child, you should consider this a warning. Any man or woman who would not consider the feelings of his/her children really isn't worth your time. The best people know that they should be their child's best advocate. If you are involved with a divorced parent who is not that to the child they have brought into the world, you should step away and look elsewhere for love.

The third thing to remember is that many of these single parent families have other families to consider as well. Like it or not, grandparents of families wrenched by divorce or death and ex-spouses have a say in the rearing of the child. Once you become involved with a dating partner who shares a child with others, you must understand that your feelings regarding the child, his or her discipline, and his or her future goals become tertiary. This does not have to be a bad thing. While everyone else involved may have to argue heavy issues, you can be the confidante who listens rather than directs.

Above all, though, the most important thing is to remember yourself. Love is important. Families are important. Being supportive is important. But if the blended family relationship just is not working, you should be willing to cut your losses in order to preserve your sense of self.

Posted at 5:27 PM on Aug 18, 2008 By

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