How to talk to your kids about a new partner
Talking to your child about a new partner can be a tough challenge emotionally, but the benefits will hopefully outweigh the difficulties long term. While your child may find it hard to adapt to the change in your life, they will be able to get to know your partner and see what a happy addition they are to your lives. Here are some tips for how to bring up the subject in a positive way.
Talk to your partner first
Before you think about how your children will react, it’s important to make sure that you and your partner are on the same page. Do they see the same future for the relationship as you do? Do they think it’s the right time for them to meet your child? It might be confusing for your child to be introduced to your new partner if the relationship does not last.
Mention your partner’s name around your child
Depending on your child’s age, there may not be any need to engineer a serious conversation about your relationship. Start by mentioning your partner’s name around your child and letting them know that there’s someone you are spending lots of time with. This will help your child get used to the idea of this person before they meet. If your child is old enough to suss out what is happening, they may approach you with their feelings about it first.
Even if you have made it clear to your child that you are not getting back together with their biological parent, they may still be harbouring a hope that this will happen. Talk of a new partner will take away this hope and may make them feel angry or upset. Reassure them that you will always put their feelings first, however this new person makes you happy and you’d love it if they could give them a chance.
Introduce your partner as a friend
By introducing your partner as a new friend at first your child will have the chance to get used to the idea of having someone new in their life. If your child is older, they may have already noticed that you are trying to meet someone, perhaps through online dating at eHarmony.co.uk, so it won’t come as a massive shock to them that this person is more than a friend.
Ask them what they want
When you suggest that your child meet your new partner, give them some options about how they’d like to go about it. A neutral setting which isn’t too pressured would be ideal and if your child feels they have had a say in what happens, they are less likely to feel cornered or uncomfortable.
When looking for a new partner as a single parent, it’s important to be upfront and honest about your children and to look for someone who is open to being part of a family. Online dating makes this easy, as it allows single parents to only look for matches who fit this persona and provides an easy way to find love once more.