Introducing your children to the person you are dating in California

Introducing children to their parent’s new girlfriend or boyfriend can be rife with problems without the right guidance.

It can certainly be tough dating after a divorce, but dating when you have a child can make the situation even more complex. Those in California who are thinking about introducing their current love interest to their child are likely worried about doing so and want to make sure they set themselves and their children up for success. There are a few tips and rules to bear in mind for everyone involved.

Timing is important for both parent and child

It takes time for both parents and children to get used to a new family dynamic, and the adjustment period can vary for both. Parents should be aware and respectful of where their children are in this time frame before introducing them to the person they are dating. Even if children have made a successful adjustment, getting used to seeing their mom or dad with someone new can take even more adjusting.

Know that there is an adjustment period for the other person as well

Divorced parents also have to consider the feelings of the person they are dating when it comes to introducing that person to their a child. Both the new person and the child have to get used to each other, and divorced parents should realize they have limited control over this particular situation. A great deal of patience is required, as is the willingness to give up a degree of control.

Consider how the love interest fits with the rest of the family dynamic

While the new person does not have to be an exact match for the old spouse, he or she should be a good match for the overall family dynamic. Parents often put the needs of their kids before their own, which might mean breaking things off with a person they feel might not get along well with their kids or someone who does not share the same values.

Do not make kids feel pressured to like the new person

Kids should not feel as if they have no choice but to like their parent's new boyfriend or girlfriend. Parents have to consider their child's age and personality when it comes to determining the chances of their child taking a liking to the other person. Children who already have two parents might not know how to feel about a third person entering the equation, mainly because it is a family structure they likely are not used to.

Adjusting to a divorce in California can be quite a challenge, no matter if the person is dating or not. For a bit of professional help, it can be beneficial to reach out to a lawyer who has access to the right resources.