Dating a single dad can feel like a slippery slope, especially with a specific set of considerations that govern the relationship, yet it can still be a wonderful experience. Whether it’s a mutual friend or you met on an online platform such as eharmony the rules are very different when it comes to single dads.
Their previous experience gives them some distinct advantages in knowing what they don’t want. Perhaps their unfinished healing might keep them from starting the dating process again, being scared to commit.
The following are carefully curated tips to make the relationship curve as accessible and relatable as possible.
Never Rush into Things!
Slow and steady they say, win the race. Take your time to decide If you are genuinely interested in dating someone with children at this time in your life. Can you envision yourself in a relationship that involves children whose needs will often take precedence over your own during events in your relationship? Do you like children?
Take time out to answer these questions before going all out into a relationship with a single dad.
Communicate Well Regularly
Make it a habit from the start of your relationship to communicate your own needs
Like every relationship, communication is vital. Please make it a habit not to shy away from telling your partner your true feelings because you’re worried that telling him how you feel might scare him away. Speak up on everything you want, find out extensively if his values, vision, relationship requirements, and goals align with yours.
Be Willing to Recognize and Address Red Flags in Your Relationship
Do not get so emotionally attached to him or having the relationship work out just for working out’s sake, that you begin to overlook or minimize issues in your relationship so that the relationship needs are not met. The relationship should be a safe place for you.
Adjusting and Adapting on the Go
His children will always be dependent on him; hence, all his plans start and end with them. You will have to adjust and adapt to the fact that while he loves you, sometimes the child will come first, and that’s okay. It has nothing to do with his love for you, it is his innate responsibility, and you can always find a balance where his relationship as a father and his commitment to you doesn’t suffer.
Dealing with the “Ex” Baggage
The child’s mother might be in their children’s lives, and you have to be ready to face that. Study and learn on stepfamily dynamics and create boundaries between the child’s mother that are healthy for the new relationship.
Give Him the Space that He Needs
Don’t choke him up, don’t be all in his business, give yourself a little bit of space to reflect on certain things, let him spend quality time with his kids; he deserves that.
A Few Bonus Tips
Understand that he is more than a dad. Know him as an individual on all levels.
Be ready to support your partner in meeting his children’s needs as much as the relationship allows.
Be aware of the unique struggles that dating a single dad entails. Every relationship is different, and while the kids and ex might love you, you may also hit some bumps along the way.
The Bottom line
Know from the onset that when you’re dating a single dad, everything is a little more serious. They have to look out for their kids. Don’t also give your heart to him too early.