Frank Manners: Important Introductions

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July 15, 2013

Moving past a divorce is a difficult and often awkward time. However, establishing a new routine outside of your previous marriage is incredibly liberating. Often, part of this process can be new love. Although new romance can be wonderfully enriching after divorce, it is very important to consider one’s children and their sensitivity to a new romantic interest.

Taking new relationships slowly after divorce is not only beneficial to your child, but also to yourself. Establish friendship first, acknowledging what you share outside of a romantic interest. When you feel comfortable moving forward in the relationship, you can now focus on introducing them to your children.

Easing into time spent with this new person slowly is paramount. Mention them to your child as a friend at first, so your child knows you are spending time with them. Next, invite them to a low-key event that will avoid highlighting them as a romantic interest.

Allow your child to have the space and time to sort out their own emotions regarding this person. Ask your child what they think and feel about your new friend, then consider their feelings, seriously. Once you feel confident that your child enjoys this person’s company and is excited about you spending time with them and everyone spending time together, have the bigger conversation regarding a romantic relationship. Again, ask your child for their opinion and how they envision this could affect them. When you give your child’s input weight within your own choices, you are showing that you value and respect their emotions. Keeping the lines of communication open and loving will ultimately benefit your personal relationship with your child as well as your new romantic interest.