When asked, grown up children always say that they would like their divorced or widowed mum or dad to be happy and meet someone new, but the reality when it happens can be very different. Think how you feel or felt about your own parents, we are all protective of our parents no matter how old we are.
Perhaps in the same way we feel sometimes about their potential partners, children tend to think no one is good enough for mum or dad and every new person you bring around is either a gold digger or someone who will stop them seeing you. That is before they even start to think about you having a physical relationship with someone…don’t even go there!
Now of course you can just say “Hey it’s my life and I will do what I want” , but maybe to make things easier for yourself in the long run, you need to still pretend to be the grown up and do some ground work. Here are a few suggestions:
Talk to your children
Tell them why you would like to meet someone and reassure them that they will still come first. If you are a widow or widower things may be more difficult as there is the issue of potentially replacing a much-loved dead parent to deal with. Again reassure them that nobody could replace their mother or father.
Be honest with them, if you are lonely tell them that is your reason for dating again, this will help them see you as another person not just as their parent. As you start to date talk to them about how things are going, you may even ask them for some advice as to how you should go about it.
Arranging for them to meet someone:
If you feel that you are beginning to be serious about someone and they feel the same about you, think about introducing them to your children. You should only do this when you feel that things are becoming more serious, as a constant string of new boyfriends or girlfriends around the family dinner table is probably not a good idea. Arrange to all go for a drink or a quick bite to eat initially, keep it low-key to start with. Gradually involve your new partner in family gatherings, this way your children will be able to slowly get used to the idea of you with someone new and hopefully be accepting.
With a little bit of thought and sensitivity you should have no problems moving on with your life, finding someone new to share it with, whilst still having a great relationship with your children.