Thursday, 23 August 2012
I have two children, ages six and four. I got married when I was 18, my husband and I split up almost 2 years ago. I met someone right away, and was in a relationship with him until a few months ago, on and off. It was a very dysfunctional relationship to say the least, and I’m sure I chose him because I was at such a rocky time in my own life, maybe I didn’t feel worthy of a healthy relationship.
Now that I’ve moved on from him, I’ve been testing the waters with new guys, and it’s just so new to me. I almost feel as if I have zero dating experience. Since leaving my husband, I lost all my “mom weight” and I’ve always taken care of my appearance, plus I’m very social and friendly. Honestly, guys ask me out pretty often. I feel so out of place in the whole realm of dating because I’m a mom.
Men are always surprised to find out I have kids. The thing is, they won’t ever come out and say that it’s an issue for them. I guess they think it would be rude, or like it isn’t that big of a deal.
It is a big deal! I am 23-years-old, and the guys are usually not much older. I have a totally different lifestyle. I can’t just pick up and go to the beach for the weekend. Unless of course, I bring my kids, but I’m not going to introduce them to every guy who’s interested in me. I wouldn’t want them to meet any guy unless I truly believed he and I were heading toward marriage. In reality, my kids’ opinion of him would become the deciding factor of whether or not I would get married again.
Another thing is, I don’t get much free time without the kids. Dating me is definitely slow paced, because at most we would have 2 nights a week together until I was comfortable having him around my children. To me, that’s a lot. It seems like guys want more. It also hurts my relationships with my friends, because usually my nights to go out are usually spent with them. Even just casually dating around takes some toll on my life.
I feel like trying to have a relationship with someone who has kids (if you do not have kids) is very difficult, and I have a hard time getting close to anyone because I don’t want to complicate their life, or make them feel like they are taking on some grand responsibility. I also don’t like talking about things that they can’t relate to in any way. If they want to be in a serious relationship with me, of course the kids are part of the package. They are like 90% of my life!
I never say I’m looking for a father for them or someone to feel responsible for them, but let’s be real. A step parent is a major influence on a child. They would have to essentially live the life of a parent in order to have a good relationship with me. I wouldn’t want to sit home alone all the time because they’re my kids and not his. It all seems like so much to ask of a person!
Men don’t seem to think this way at first. They think babysitters are just a phone call away and don’t quite grasp the concept of taking care of two additional people on top of yourself, much less teaching and raising them.
I met someone recently who has potential to work out so far. He is older than I’ve ever dated, 35, and of course seems fine with the fact that I have children. He has a very successful career and lots of free time, does fun things and travels a lot. I’m going to try and give it a shot since everyone has told me an older man would be more mentally equipped to handle a woman with children, but he also doesn’t have any of his own.
Another thing that concerns me is the fact that I don’t want any MORE children. I don’t think there are many men who like kids enough to help raise them, but don’t want any of their own. I was trying to find a single dad, but they are very hard to come by! My dating spectrum just keeps shrinking.
I guess I’ll continue to test the waters, but I can’t shake this negative feeling I have toward dating with kids. It’s very difficult for me to balance all these emotions, combined with the ones of meeting a nice guy.
I wanted to know how many readers out there are starting to date with kids, or maybe you’ve been doing it for a while?
Any guys out there dating/have dated a woman with kids?
Any guys opposed to the idea?