How to Introduce Your Date to Your Kids

It is difficult enough being a single parent, let alone diving back into the dating scene. You want to be able to find love again, yet you don't want the dating process to conflict with your children's lives. So just how do you introduce your date to your kids?

This is a very sensitive issue, of course. Anytime you're dealing with a child's emotions, you have to take extreme precaution. The best thing you can do is have an open and honest relationship with your children. Tweens and teenagers are going to have a better understanding of the whole dating thing than younger children, but the young ones probably know more than you think they do. Explain to your children before they meet your date exactly what you are doing. It's better that they know what you're up to so when you bring a date home it's not a total shock.

When it's time for them to meet, make sure you prepare your date as well. Let him know your kids' names and their hobbies so he's not left out in the cold with nothing to say. When you say, "This is my daughter, Mary," he can come back with something like, "Nice to meet you Mary, your mother told me you're on the basketball team." This sort of preparation helps break the tension by engaging the children in conversation that they're actually interested in.

It's also important to let your children be themselves. Meeting your new partner is going to be awkward for them no matter what you do, so there's no need to make them any more uncomfortable by stuffing them into formal wear. Just let them dress and act as they normally do. Any date worth seeing again isn't going to mind. After the date is over ask your children for feedback. Ask them what they liked or didn't like about him. It's important that they feel like their opinions matter to you - which they should.

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