If you’re in the throes of single parenting and dating becomes an issue, you need to know how to handle yourself and your relationship in a healthy way. Teens learn from the way their parents act, thus you need to learn how to best create a positive experience for everyone involved.
Dating as a Single Parent
The idea of single parenting and dating can seem like an impossible mix. Like oil and water, you might think that the two simply don’t seem to create something that’s healthy for anyone involved. But this does not have to be the case.
While you may have heard unflattering stories of dating as a single parent, there are ways to make this a positive experience for everyone.
All you need to do is realize that your relationship isn’t just about your needs; it’s also going to affect the life of your teen. It’s up to you to make sure that everyone is satisfied with the situation.
Finish What You’ve Started
The best lesson to start with when you think about dating as a single parent is to heal the previous relationship you’ve had before starting a new one. Though you might want to simply jump back into a relationship and try to provide another parent for your teen, this simply isn’t fair to anyone.
If you’re still nursing wounds from a previous relationship, you owe it to yourself to wait until you are ready for dating again. This will model a strong sense of self love for your teen. You are showing them that in order to be someone positive in a relationship, you need to be okay with yourself first.
Positive Relationships Promote Positive Experiences
Needless to say, any relationship you have as a single parent needs to be a positive one. At the first sign of negative relationship qualities, you will want to remove that relationship from your life. You don’t want your teen to think that this is okay for him or her to have in their future relationships. In showing that you will not put up with bad partners, they’ll learn that they are worth more as a person, too.
Bring Your Teen into the Conversation
Of course, it’s always a good idea to ask your teen what they think about your dating and what they think about dating in general. This will give you a feel for past experiences they might have had with dating (and with your own dating).
If you’re in a healthy relationship, then continue to pursue it, keeping your teen’s feelings in mind. This allows everyone to become used to the arrangement at a pace that is natural. Your teen will eventually adjust as they observe your happiness. Single parenting and dating can coexist – it just takes a little more effort.