He then explained, with all seriousness, how I could come to the boysâ football games and we could hang out and talk in the stands. You’re supposed to feel like a priority. No one should apologize for their kids (unless they’re really, really bad. Kidding! Sort of … ). All of his kids are involved in sports and church activities. At the same time, just like a new baby (pun intended), budding relationships need nurturing. Â But how do you say that to a devoted parent without sounding like the Trick That Stole Christmas?Â Itâs touchy territory. (Which, how the heck would he know since we spent almost no time together?). I expected nothing less of him than to be there for his children. It’s about the lifestyle change. And as the adult and the one he was not legally and ethically responsible for, I was always the last in line. How people work that out? I’m not sure. But not being able to make time for us, is. â Two baby mamas, and two boys and two girls. Donât get me wrong; I never wanted to come before his kids. And I include the baby mamas because they are very much a part of the equation dating a guy with 4 kids. â Okay, the word “compromise” isn’t the most warm and cozy thing to sayÂ in this context; a parent doesn’t want to hear anything less than glowing applause about his or her little dumpling, even if the pookie doo cusses them out on a regular basis. â âOf course thereâs room for you,â Chris said. As far as the compromise, all relationships involve compromise. I was wary from the beginning with âChris. Just because a person is a good parent, doesn’t make him or her a good partner, and I still needed to do my due diligence.
Their moods affect his mood, their finances affect his finances, their availability affects his availability. Cheese or somebody’s rehearsal…and I was on my way out to paint the town. Virtually every day and every weekend, somebody has a practice, a rehearsal, or a game — and heâs at just about every single one. My life consists of spontaneous weeknight outings, trips on the weekends and sleeping in — all things I would love to do with my boo. Â But I think the guy is being honest about what the situation means for a lot of people. Still, I donât consider a man with children to be a deal breaker. Every weekend. It reminds me of my own experience âgetting to knowâ a guy with not one, not two, not three, but four kids — all under the age of 18. Thatâs a lot of people to factor in when trying to learn about one person. You could be raising the freaking Golden Child for all I care dating a guy with 4 kids. I say âgetting to knowâ because our brief tango didnât get very far for a few reasons … one of which being juggling The Parenthood.. And frankly, I felt neglected. A person without kids isnât a walk in the park just because of that fact alone. Â He constantly regaled me with stories about his kids, as if being a dutiful dad excused him from having to put much effort into courting me (yeah, old school, I know). But dedicated “just us” time with this dude was as difficult to come by as weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. One of the first characteristics I discovered about Chris is that heâs a terrific,Â super involved, ever-present father. Which led me to the conclusion, âI donât think thereâs any room for me in your life. Turns out that such a demanding schedule, coupled with the spontaneous responsibilities of parenthood, are not all that conducive to a potential relationship. Â Many an evening I talked to Chris and he was on his way to Chuck E. The compromise isn’t personally about the child.
But they do it every day. Every day. We talked on the phone often, but thatâs all we ever managed to do. Far from it. I told him often that he was an awesome dad, a prime example, father of the year. Honor or compromise? Iâd say both. I felt honored whenever Chris said he couldnât wait for me to meet his kids and that Iâd make a great step-mom. The reality? I was one of several people vying for this manâs attention on a daily basis. As much as I dig football, his suggestion wasnât going to replace the need to spend time together — just us. Â The child-free personâs life is the one that has to drastically transform when involved with a person with kids, not the other way around. Talk. I struggled with this feeling because I was sensitive to his responsibilities, but still didn’t feel he deserved a free pass from the “meet me halfway” zone. Every planned date was postponed because of a basketball tournament, somebodyâs tummy ache, no one to watch the kids on his weekend, or scheming baby mama antics. After all, if he was a deadbeat dad and could spend all of his extra time with me, I wouldnât have been comfortable with that either. Dating Someone with Kids: A Compromise or an Honor? I remember watching an episode of The BacheloretteÂ in which single mom Emily Maynard was visibly offended when potential beau Alessandro used the word âcompromiseâ to describe how he felt about being involved with her as a single parent. All things that would slow down like cold honey to mesh with a family man. She later stated, âMe having a daughter isnât a compromise and anyone Iâm going to spend my life with is going to see it as the biggest bonus ever. Nor should I apologize for expecting a certain level of engagement with the person I’m interested in. This can be especially daunting for someone like me who fully savors her freedom. âYou see that as a compromise? You donât see that as an honor?â she asked. A man would have to accept me and my mucho miscellany just as much as I would have to accept his.