LAY DOWN THE RULES
It’s also advisable to set some ground rules before you start dating. Begin by committing to being honest with a prospective partner about how much time you have for them, making it clear you are not as flexible as a childless woman and that your child will always be your first priority. “Men who do not have children may not always understand the demands of single parenting,” says JeanMarie. “And some men may decide dating a single mom is not for them. Respect this and move on.”
Sinette says another important rule to set is not to introduce your child to every guy you go on a date with. “This can be emotionally damaging and confusing to your child,” agrees JeanMarie. “Before allowing him to meet your child, you need to establish not only if your new partner is a good fit for you, but also whether he is a good fit for your family.”
To do this, she says, you need to discuss key issues in depth with your new partner: “It is important to discuss the expectations which you both have for your relationship and the role he is to play in your child’s life. Discuss whether you both would like to have any more children. If he has Ultimately, bringing a new partner into your life is bound to cause upsets; some minor, others possibly not so much.
“The child might be scared of losing you. This might cause significant insecurity in them,” explains Sinette. “She might have a change in attitude towards you and might also have changes in eating, sleeping and being