How To Date Someone Who Has Kids

Every year, around Father’s Day I delete my Facebook account. Not because I hate my daughter’s father or because I have “daddy issues”. I actually have great love and respect for the man I created another life with, and my step father has been my dad since I was 9 years old so… it’s not me. It’s the bitter broads who wish themselves a Happy Father’s Day, because they procreated with the wrong man. Don’t get me wrong, kudos for doing bad all by yourself but it’s petty. And a lot of it is just blind rage, some women aren’t single mothers; they’re mothers who are single. And there’s a difference.

I had my daughter at 20, her father and I split for good maybe a year later after 5 years off and on. There’s a misconception that the parents can always get back together but sometimes, you genuinely just don’t work well as a couple but better as parents. I have a wonderful relationship with my daughter’s father, and that’s the way it should be. Which brings me to my first point.

DON’T assume he/she is still sleeping with or would sleep with their ex.

Sure, sex created this kid they share but you’ll know for sure when two people are really over. If you’re really curious, ask them. But have some tact about it. Ask “how’s the relationship between you two?” or ask how long they’ve been separated. Don’t just jump up and say “YOU PROBABLY STILL LET THIS NIGGA FUCK WHEN HE COMES TO PICK UP HIS SON, HUH?!” Calm the fuck down. Act like an adult. If you’re that insecure about it, don’t date them.

DO take interest in their kid once you find out about him/her.

On the first date, when you’re gushing over shrimp Alfredo and talking about your careers and families; ask about their children. And then ask some more questions. Parents love talking about their children and it will be attractive that you take interest in getting to know the little person or people in their life also. Ask his/her name, age, to see a pic even. But take interest.

DON’T assume they’re looking for you to fill an absent parent void.

My daughter’s father lives back home in CT, so our co-parenting situation is very unique. Summers up there, holidays down here, phone calls and cards in between. I’m by no form or fashion a single mother and I’m not looking for a father for my child. I know some women are but you should find that out by their answer when you ask them about the other parent. If he/she has completely abandoned their child and has had no contact, then maybe you ask what they’re looking for. But just because you don’t see that other parent, don’t assume you’re next up and let it deter you from getting to know them.

DO understand that date nights will be tricky and annoying at times.

You won’t be able to lay up under this person at all times, if they’re a good parent. During the week, my daughter is home with me. On the weekends, either my grandmother, mother, one of her friend’s mother’s, kidnaps her lol. I was able to enjoy my early 20’s because I have a great support system but typically; my daughter is home more than not. So I save my fun time for the weekends, and at night. He/she might not be able to catch a movie on a Wed night, or get drinks Tuesday after work. They have a greater responsibility. Respect that and don’t stop by super often or call super late. Especially if the relationship is new/you haven’t really met their child. Ask them when they have time for you, and come to a compromise. I personally don’t have adult company until my daughter is sound asleep, or not at home.

DON’T rush to meet their child.

Most parents are very very protective of their children and will wait months before you ever see their little one in person. As the mother of an almost 9-year old, I can be a bit honest with the company she may see from time to time. I don’t do the “this is Uncle Mike” thing with her lol. I simply say what it is. If they’re my friend, they’re my friend. If they’re a boyfriend, then that’s what it is. And she says the same thing every time, “well as long as you’re happy. I hope you have fun on your date, you look pretty!” That’s my little cheerleader lol. When I break up with a guy that she’s met and been around often, I sit and talk to her about it and we move on. I don’t have a specific timeline for when a guy meets her, I just go with a vibe. If we’re just fucking though, NAH.

DO spoil their kid too, especially if you two are serious.

Recently, a guy I was dating, got my daughter and I Valentine’s Day gifts. We both got cards and chocolates and stuffed animals, and it was so sweet and thoughtful. Another ex I had would buy her something every time he bought me something, and it said a lot about these men as future fathers. It sends the message that you’re thinking of this parent and their child as a package deal, and they are.

DON’T over step your boundaries.

Leave the disciplining to their birth parent. Don’t ever think because you’ve been fucking their mother and eating their snacks for 7 months that you can raise your voice, or hand at them. If you and their mom/dad are married and you’re now a step-parent; still let their parent decide how that goes. If they give you full parental rights, fine. But talk to them first. Also, don’t just let the kid get away with murder because you’re not their mom/dad; you’re still an adult and you know right from wrong. Tell their parent if something is wrong.

DO communicate with your partner, if you’re not cut out for it. 

Don’t just ghost on a single parent, they probably already experienced that. Have an honest conversation if you can’t handle it. And if you two get to the point of having a baby together, ask the kid how they feel about you marrying their mom/dad if they’re old enough to understand. Be a role model and understand that this kid now has you also, so you’ve gotta be there. But only if you want to be.

Have fun, sometimes dating someone with kids will be one of the best relationships you’ll ever have. You know this person cooks and cleans lol and that they have a nurturing spirit. Also, when they do make time for you, appreciate it because it was hard to come by.

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