These are comments by Kat and Jester Who-ver on the post “Can I Date a Single Dad?“
“At 19 I became a step parent and since then it has continued to be a journey for me (even after that relationship ended for many reasons). Though we had a unique co-parenting arrangement which made it easier (I was and am the good friend with the mother of the child) the reality was it still wasn’t easy.
“That being said I would likely date a man with children. As I learned it’s not the parenting aspect I didn’t like but the chaos of the two adults I don’t like at all. In a functional, serious and long term relationship the step parent will have a voice. But, unfortunately, the romantic relationship will be impacted by the coparenting relationship of the single father (unless he’s widowed and that’s a different issue altogether).
“Is it a contentious coparenting relationship? As a step mother would I have to pick sides? Would it be an endless line of legal battles and fights over weekends? Is there a lot of ‘she’s crazy’ being thrown around? I take those all as warning flags for potentially how my relationship may go with the guy. If they are stable and able to communicate and work through their issues I’m much more willing to walk into that scenario. But chaos? No way.”
Jester Who-ver replied:
“Well stated, Kat. What I see women too often do is set up a negative scenario based on what they assume life will be like before they understand what it would actually be like. Opinions from a lack of understanding can be the worse baggage of all, as you’ve defined it.
“If you view a child as baggage, how are you going to interact with that child? If you view the fact that there are children involved as a difficult hurdle in the relationship, how are you going to start off and treat that relationship? It’s way too easy for assumptions to fail a relationship before it really gets started. Granted, it is a good idea to know what you’re getting into, definitely. However, the mere fact that a child is there is not necessarily a sign of the slippery slope you’ve here presented.
“From my own experience, it is impossible to date a woman that is this concerned over the fact that I have kids. It’s as though I’m no longer a man like any other she would date. Now I’m a man to be cautious around, and think about the future with. When really, I’m just looking to have fun and enjoy the moment. I don’t date to find a step mom, I date to find a woman I enjoy spending time with. I’ve noticed if the connection is right, and the love is strong, the rest works out on its own. All this worry over what a potential future might be like stresses me out.”
Photo credit: Flickr / Sherif Salama