Tuesday, October 13th, 2015
Introducing your new partner to your children can be very stressful. You desperately want everyone to like and accept each other. There are no guarantees however, there are a number of things you can try to ensure everything goes smoothly. In particular, your children need to understand the dynamics of the situation therefore, it is important you try to make the process a lot easier.
What type of partner should you introduce?
Before finding a serious relationship, you may date a number of people. Therefore, do not introduce your kids to every passing partner. This will most likely confuse and frustrate them, you want them to meet someone with whom you’re ideally developing a serious relationship with. It can take longer for your children to trust him/her.
It is best to wait until you are in a commited relationship with someone before introducing your children into the equation. It is important to build stability with your new partner, where you’re comfortable with each other. Talk to your new partner about your children beforehand, by all means, but try to avoid discussing your former partner.
As the relationship develops, ensure you still give plenty of time to your children, all the time you can. It’s easy to become distracted in a new, major relationship, but don’t do it at the expense of your kids.
The first meeting
Introducing your child/children to your new partner should be made casual. This may include a trip to the park or the cinema. Introduce your partner as a friend therefore, do not kiss and hold hands, include everyone in the conversation. It may be a good idea to let your partner and child have a brief conversation. However, keep time for yourself alone with the kids during the visit, too, just as you normally would.
You do not need to have your partner with you every time you have your children. However, it is good to have him/her join regularly. As time moves on, sit down with your children and explain about your relationship ? in terms they will understand, depending on their age. Bare in mind, their reaction is important. Hopefully, by the time you do tell them, they?ll have developed their own relationship with your new partner and accept her readily.
If you decide to move in together with your new partner, make your children a part of the process. If you?re renting or buying a new place, let them make the decisions about Decorating Rooms that will be theirs ? it gives them a stake in both the place and the relationship.
If the relationship allows, discuss the move with your ex. It is best to prepare her and for you to tell her first, before the children do. It is about sustaining good relationships with everyone, including your former partner.
If your children do not get along with your new parter, there is no easy solution. It?s quite possible you?ll have to make a choice between your partner and your children (and the same applies if your partner doesn?t like your children). Remember, however, that your children are with you for life. Your responsibility to them will never end. The best thing to do is try everything in your power to make sure things go well. Don?t rush anything ? there?s plenty of time.
If you leave for someone else
If you left to be with another person, the situation is different. Your ex will have told the children, and you should have sat down with them to explain it, too. However, that does not mean you need to introduce him/her immediately. Take time with your kids when you’re with them and, gradually introduce your new partner. Avoid introducing him/her immediately as their new stepdad/stepmother. Give your children a chance to become used to him/her ? and vice versa.