As a single dad searching for companionship, it is likely safe to say that you are in need of dating advice. Perhaps you've found yourself feeling isolated and alone since leaving a once committed relationship. How can you ease your way into the dating world as a single dad?
Consider Your Child's Needs First
As an adult, you can enjoy your life, including dating, while still committing yourself to your child's needs. In the majority of split-parent families, children often suffer the most. Young children generally cannot grasp the concept of why their mommy or daddy is no longer part of their life on a consistent, daily basis and older children tend to blame themselves for the broken relationship, attempting to find fault in things that they generally could not have prevented.
As a dad, it is your utmost responsibility to care for your child's needs on a physical, emotional and intellectual level. Be honest with your children and answer their questions regarding your dating life age-appropriately. Never lie to your child and always emphasize your love for them.
Utilize All Dating Resources
With the variety of resources available for dating, make sure you utilize as many as possible. Common resources for dating include online dating websites, singles groups at local churches and singles organizations within the community. While you should utilize all available resources, note that there are a large number of online dating sites to which you should use discretion and only register for the sites that meet your personal and financial needs.
Just as you would expect your date to be honest with you, it is important to extend the same courtesy. Be honest and upfront with your date, including your current relationship status and the fact that you are a single dad. If a potential partner cannot accept the fact that you have a children, the relationship will clearly not work out. If a date sees your children as baggage or is not willing to develop a relationship due to your parental status, keep looking and find someone that is willing.
Don't Let Your Ex Stand in the Way
Assuming there is no chance of resolving past issues with your ex, avoid letting your ex stand in the way of establishing a new relationship with someone else. Often times, women can become jealous when they find out their ex is dating someone else. While it is apparent that you will have to have contact with your ex for your child's sake, it is important to establish limits, clearly stating that you will not allow your ex to stand in the way of any developing relationships.
Introduce Your Date When the Time Is Right
When the time is right, and not a moment before, introduce your date to your children. Use caution when introducing your children to your date, as wording is often critical. Avoid introducing anyone until a serious relationship has evolved, which will lessen your child's feelings of mistrust, fear and betrayal.