Kids and a New Partner: Things to Consider

Dating after a divorce is always a complicated thing, especially when you have children in the picture. You want them to like the new person in your life, but your kids are your life. Keeping the complications to a minimum means keeping several things in mind. Here are things to consider before bringing kids and a new partner together, so you can keep the peace and harmony in your family.

 

Kids and a New Partner

There are tons of questions to think about when you bring together kids and a new partner. Is it too soon? What if they don’t like your significant other? What’s the best way to introduce everyone? What if your kids are confused? How do you deal with anger? Keeping some important factors in mind are vital to handling many of these complex questions.

 

Is This Going to Last?

Are you getting serious with your new relationship? Is there a chance of getting serious? Introducing your kids to every single person with whom you go to the movies may not be the best idea. They could assume that nobody is going to stick around. The moment you and your new S.O. talk about getting serious, though, discussions of meeting the family should come into play.

 

How Long Has It Been?

Have you been with your new partner for a month? Six months? A year? Only you know how long is “long,” but if you go too long without introducing your significant other to your kids, they may think you’re hiding something. At some point it becomes necessary to admit that yes, this is a serious thing.

 

How Old Are They?

Kids are resilient, but their attitudes and outlooks change significantly as they age. Younger kids are much more likely to accept a new person in their life more quickly, but will also have a harder time letting go if that new person leaves.

Older kids, on the other hand, are going to be more skeptical and distant with the new entry, but may form close and long-term bonds if things work out. If you have teens, you may have an important opportunity to set a good example for positive dating relationships.

 

What Does Your Ex Think?

Your ex’s opinion doesn’t define your life—that ended when your marriage did. However, you and they are still partners in raising your children, and you should both still value each other’s opinions. Take some time to talk with your ex about your new relationship. Consider even introducing your new partner to your ex before you do so to the kids. You may get some insights you hadn’t yet considered.

Healing after divorce is a long process and new relationships are a part of that journey. If you would like more advice on finding yourself after the end of your marriage, read a few articles we’ve put together, and call us for information on how a mediated divorce can help you salvage something of your lost relationship.

 


Your New Significant Other, Divorce and Kids

When you divorce, part of the healing process for many people is finding themselves again through the eyes of a new relationship. It’s natural for us to seek new love and companionship, especially after a difficult split. But what happens when you have children? The introduction of a new significant other can be traumatic and difficult for them to handle. When you pursue your first relationship after a split, here are some tips for how to deal with your new significant other, divorce and kids.

 

Divorce and Kids

Divorce and kids can seem like oil and water. When you bring a new relationship into the mix, your kids may take out a lot of anger on the new man or woman in your life, may place undue blame on the new relationship and may test boundaries and create difficulties. It’s important to handle the process correctly to keep the peace in your family and help everyone to move forward.

 

How Serious Is It?

You don’t have to introduce every single person you date to your children right away. If you’re in a casual relationship that is not likely to turn serious, there may not be a reason to bring your kids or former spouse into the picture.  The time to bring your new S.O. into the fold is when things turn serious. If you become committed and see yourselves together, exclusively, for the long term, then it’s time.

 

Discuss the Situation First

Talk the situation over with everyone involved. This means not just your new partner, but your spouse and your children. Make sure that everyone is on the same page before you make introductions. This will save you and your family from unpleasant surprises. Remember that even though you may be divorced, your ex is still a parent and partner, and thus a part of the family even though it’s non-traditional.

 

Get Ready for a Tough Road

Your kids and your ex may not like your new partner. Prepare yourself for this. In fact, they may actually be predisposed to dislike the new entry into their lives. This doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a permanent thing—their initial negative reactions could fade over time. Then again, they may not.

When “I don’t like him (or her)” comes into play, it’s important for you to step back and carefully evaluate the situation. Your children should still come first, but your happiness is important, too. It’s a delicate balancing act that you and your new partner are going to have to learn to juggle, and if you can’t, then it may not be meant to be.

For those facing divorce and healing, a mediated process can sometimes help to get started on the right foot with your new life. If your marriage is over but you want to salvage a partnership out of the relationship, give us a call for more information today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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