Dating in today’s world is a lot different than when your parents did it. Today we have the internet. Women are the primary bread winners of their households and earn just as much (if not more) than men. Technology has melted away the boarders and allowed love to be within arm’s reach no matter what country you come from. Yes, things are drastically different than when mom and dad got down.
Things have also gotten more complicated….
No longer are men allowed to shirk their responsibilities and blame it on alcohol or seek to deny the child by calling into question the honor of the woman. Nope. DNA did away with that crap. Men and women are now held accountable for their behavior.
And that brings us to today’s topic….
The Baby Mama/ Baby Daddy drama.
Dating someone with a child can be a complex equation for anyone to solve. But dealing with the parent on either side of that baby can be as difficult as solving a Rubik’s Cube at the bottom of the Mariana Trench.
Every parent “wants” to think of the child first. They want to put the needs of the child before their own. But the truth of the matter is that parents are usually the main problem. Failed relationships involving children rarely lead to successful parenting between the ex-lovers because the child was created from an irresponsible situation. One of the parents feels slighted and chooses to use the child as a way to exact some type of control over the non-compliant parent (i.e. the parent who chose to end the relationship and doesn’t want them back).
And then you step into the picture.
The moment you find out someone has a child is usually undramatic. Maybe they tell you during that moment when the two of you are just learning one another and you are conversing during that newbie phase. Oh, they will usually start out with the “I love my child dearly” comments but fail to mention that psycho baby momma that sliced up his tires last week. Or the jealous stalker baby daddy that will call and hang up 19 times per night when he discovers that she’s decided to move on.
Baby Momma/ Baby Daddy drama is no joke.
From the perspective of the parent, you don’t want just any old thot around your child. Some chicks can really be as rugged as they come. It’s hard to have trust in someone that told you they would never hurt you and you would be together forever. If anything, they’ve proven they are certified liars. And you definitely don’t want some dude making out with your ex in front of your kid. I mean, the thought of another man being there when you aren’t just burns like hot pokers on your soul. That other man getting to see your child’s firsts while not being the man to bring life to him is a pretty crushing feeling.
So, what are you supposed to do? How do you date someone who has kids? Should you avoid them all together? Should you jump in head first and try to be a part of their lives? What should you do?
Here are a few Things You Should Do When You’re Dating Someone with Kids:
1. Ask to Be Excluded in the beginning: Okay, now don’t say something stupid like “I don’t want anything to do with your kid”. That comment will get you banished to the Shadow Realm with quick-quick. But there are ways to let him or her know you want to build up to the moment of inclusion. Most parents will automatically know the difference between a serious relationship and a one-night stand. But some don’t. Some people will literally have you baby-sitting their kids one week after knowing them. Seriously, this isn’t cool. You shouldn’t expect to date someone while separating the kid from the parent. That’s not realistic. But you also shouldn’t be brought into the child’s life unless you plan on being a permanent fixture. There’s nothing wrong with letting that person know that while your intention is to be there for the long haul, the regular interactions with the child should be at a minimum until you reach a certain level in the relationship. It could be traumatic for the kid to have a new friend and then have that friend snatched away because the relationship didn’t work.
2. Ask about the Ex: Don’t be afraid to speak about the past relationship. If that person tries to hide what has happened previously then that may be a sign of some darker issues you don’t want to deal with. But ask. Find out if they have a healthy ongoing relationship. How will they feel about a new person being in their life? Are they crazy jealous? What type of relationship do they have with the child?
3. Ask about the future: It’s sad to say but some men and women are only looking for a financial fill-in until their situation changes for the better. There’s nothing wrong if you don’t want to be financially responsible for another person’s child. But like it or not, if you get to a long-term relationship with this person, you’ll be footing the bill. But the money isn’t everything. They may be carrying a lot of baggage from that previous relationship. Ask what their future goals are. See if trust issues exist. Any time that children are involved there’s usually a whooooooole lot of trust issues.
4. Ask about time management: Guess what? Parents don’t have a lot of time for the same things that the average dating person has time for. While you’re out grabbing beer with your friends, they’re probably putting the child to sleep or doing laundry. While you are spontaneous about making love, they’ll probably only get down only when the baby is asleep. Hey, they have to do everything that you do every day plus all the baby stuff.
5. Assess yourself: Are you a jealous person? Because like it or not, your lover is going to interact with the baby daddy or baby momma quite frequently. It takes a great deal of maturity to understand that the bond between your lover and their ex will always be special because of the child. Immature people can’t see this and usually don’t survive the process. A child is forever. They will share that bond with their ex until old age (or at least 21). Prepare yourself.
6. When you reach the “serious” level, talk to the ex: Whatever do you, don’t roll up on this person one week, one month or one year into the relationship. Having a conversation with this person should be done with all three of you present and AFTER you have moved beyond dating to LONG TERM COMMITMENT. Talk to him or her. Ask for permission to be a part of the child’s life. Sure, you don’t need to ask. But it might save you quite a bit of drama. By asking it communicates to the parent that you respect their position and that you only want to add value, not replace.