Children of Divorce are affected in ways that parents rarely consider possible. Not only do they lose the lifestyle theyve always known, but suddenly they are the children who move constantly between two homes weekend visits with one disconsolate parent and everyday life with the other stressed out parent. Their resources are reduced, their lifestyle is changed for one that is less privileged and they find themselves fighting for love and support for themselves.
As if it wasnt difficult enough raising children under ideal circumstances, divorce brings another set of obstacles to parenting. Not only do you have to deal with your own emotions, you also need to deal with those of your children. Naturally each child reacts differently to this situation but all of them seem to get involved in a power play with their parents.
With this in mind, you have to think of the best way to handle things when you start putting your life back together again and begin dating.
Whatever your relationship is with your Minor Children, it is inadvisable to bring your Dates home to meet them.
There are those single parents who believe in sharing almost everything with their Minor Children: complaints about their past marriage; gossip from work; and details of each and every date in their new single status. None of this is a healthy way in which to bring up Minor Children. They are not equipped to understand these matters and will be so negatively affected by hearing about such things that they could end up feeling a good deal of disrespect and resentment towards your Dates before ever meeting them.
In the beginning, therefore, when you start dating all over again; please do it discreetly and dont discuss it with your children. No matter what your family or friends tell you this is just a Date. You dont yet know whether or not it will continue and until that has been decided, its not something to which you should expose your children. Especially if you start out by keeping things very light and casual and dating a lot of different people.
Dont hide the fact that youre dating again, and dont hide your Dates. So, if the occasion presents itself by all means make the introductions but try to leave it at that until things progress between you and a long standing Date.
Children of Divorce can feel extremely insecure and become very easily attached, so you need to be careful and wait until youre sure about a new partner before discussing anything of this nature with them. A good time to suggest some joint activities that include your children, your Date and yourself, will be when you are finally dating someone special on a very regular and exclusive basis.
There are quite a few situations you need to think through regarding this type of thing. Say for example, that you stay overnight at your Dates house, or they stay overnight at your house what sort of an example are you setting for your children?
You cant really pretend that he or she slept on the settee all night your children will not be fooled. Further, if you lie to them about this you will be establishing the basis for further lies, and they will mistrust you on other matters. Therefore, its in everyones best interests if theres no overnighting or displays of sexual intimacy until things become really serious.
When the sleepovers do begin, youll need to talk with your older children and explain to them that its acceptable for you as you are over 21 years and have been married for years; but it most definitely not OK for them certainly not while they are under your roof and in your care.
Something else you will need to be prepared for is the fact that your Ex will not be happy about this state of affairs in your life, and they will probably have a lot to say about it. So when your Ex hears all about it from your childrens versions of what happened, be prepared for a confrontation because although Exs in general feel its acceptable for them to have a good time, they also feel that its unacceptable for you to do the same. Its best if you talk with your Ex and explain the situation before a child beats you to it and causes misinterpretation.
Often, it will take a long time for your Ex to feel good about you moving on and getting on with your life. To them its acceptable as long as this only involves joining the gym or an art class: but when dating and fulfilling your sexual needs are involved they initially decide that youve lost your moral standards and they become uptight in response. What they need to realise is that your happiness is most important as it benefits the children and their happiness.
So, when you are ready to go out again and meet people of the opposite sex, remember it isnt just you thats involved here.