In my divorce and custody practice, the subject of dating comes up frequently.
You are entitled to a life but how you manage new relationships after divorce can have a significant effect on your children who may or may not feel not only jealous but threatened. After all your kids may feel entitled to your undivided attention especially when they are dividing their time between mom and dad. They also most likely harbor hopes that you and your ex will get back together.
Here are Seven Tips for Dating After Divorce
1. Make the introduction casual. Say he or she drops by while you are with your kids. Don’t make it a big deal.
2. Make it gradual. You might consider having the new boyfriend or girlfriend spend only a few hours at first with your kids
3. Don’t immediately introduce the new girlfriend or boyfriend as anything more than a friend.
4. Once you all are spending considerably more time together keep boundaries intact.
5. If the other parent is active in their lives, don’t let your children feel you are trying to replace that parent.
6. Don’t encourage your kids to call the new girlfriend or boyfriend “mom” or “dad”.
7. It is probably wise not to allow the new boyfriend or girlfriend to discipline your child. You set the boundaries.
Life is always a balancing act and dating after divorce is no different. You are entitled to embark on new relationships and you can do that after divorce with kids.