Dating After Divorce: When Should
A Girlfriend Meet Your Kids?
Your Guide To Quickly Getting Back Into "The Dating Game" After A Divorce Or
By Ken Kennedy
www.Double Your Dating.com
Ken Kennedy "Did you know
there's a critical mistake that divorced dads almost ALWAYS make when they
start to meet & date women again. And that this one mistake ruins more
father/child relationships than virtually any other?
That's right - I said RUIN."
Imagine your kids no longer trusting what you say,
looking at you suspiciously, and no longer seeing you as Daddy-King-
And imagine years later, when your kids have grown distant from you, perhaps
they've physically moved far away, all because of this "little" mistake you
made when they were younger.
That's what I'm talking about when I say "ruin".
Not only does this mistake poison father/child relationships, but it also
screws up the child - making him less able to sustain relationships of his
own when he eventually enters adulthood.
If you're a product of divorced parents, and you've been having some trouble
sustaining long term relationships with women, then you may have first hand
experience of what I'm talking about here.
When I first starting dating after my own divorce, I thought it'd be easy to
protect my son Tyler, who was 4 at the time, from any harm coming from me
re-entering the dating scene.
I thought if I wanted to be around a particular woman and if she made me
happy, that he'd be happy too and would want to participate. I figured it
was enough for me if I waited to introduce him until I knew the woman was
steady, dependable, and trustworthy.
To be honest, there was a little bit of selfishness thrown in there too.
Yes, of course I wanted to protect Tyler from getting hurt, but I really
didn't consider fully all the different ways my dating could hurt him. I was
focused more on getting my own needs met.
Little did I know I was setting the stage for disaster - but more on that
I HATE IT WHEN MY EX IS RIGHT
When Tyler was about 4, I start dating a very attractive, kind, and mature
woman I had met in a very romantic location - the parking lot to my friend's
* By the way, if the thought of walking up to an attractive woman in a
public place like a parking lot, restaurant, or book store and walking away
with her number seems impossible to you right now, I'm here to tell you it's
Back to my story:
After a month or two, she started expressing interest in meeting my kid. She
was a very down to earth & responsible woman, so I saw no problem to it. And
best of all, I had a plan.
I read in a book about divorce that when you're ready to introduce a new
woman to your child, you should go out for ice cream, show no physical
affection, and introduce her as just a friend.
This made perfect sense to me.
But when I told my ex about my plan, she blew a fuse.
She said she was worried about introducing my girlfriend to our son. She
thought it could lead to some emotional trauma or something.
This pissed me off and frustrated me. I saw it as just another way my ex was
trying to control my life and keep me from being happy. Why should she make
me suffer just because her life wasn't all that great after the divorce? I
had gone above and beyond the call of duty to support her financially. But
it seemed like it was just never enough for her.
(I just had to rant there for a second. - OK, I feel better now. Back to the
Now, you can say I'm the typical "protective father." I'll do whatever it
takes to avoid even the FAINTEST POSSIBILITY of doing harm to my kid.
But the way I saw it, the "introduce her as a friend" plan seemed pretty
What damage could you do by introducing a new female "friend" to your little
WHAT YOU DON'T KNOW CAN HURT YOU - AND YOUR KIDS
My ex hated my plan. In fact, she thought it was downright DANGEROUS.
But me, being the intelligent and wise man I am, knew in my heart of hearts
that this was just another case of my ex being STUPID and WRONG.
But I said, "Fine, fine, fine. Here's what I'll do - I'm going to call a
child psychologist. If the shrink says my plan isn't a wise move, I won't do
My ex thought this was a great idea (of course in her opinion this was one
of the FEW good ideas I've come up with since we split).
So I looked up a local child psychologist on Yahoo yellow pages. I explained
the situation, and I explained my plan.
But my head nearly spun a 360 when she told me that my plan WAS INDEED
dangerous... and that I should wait at least 6 MONTHS before introducing a
woman I'm dating to my child.
This therapist must have been on too much Valium or Lithium or Prozac or
something... Obviously she had no idea what she was talking about.
I must have had the bad luck of calling an "overly conservative" therapist
right off the bat.
No worries, I thought. I'll just call another therapist.
I'm sure she'll be more sympathetic to my "introduce her as a friend" plan.
After all, I got the plan from a book that was WRITTEN by a therapist.
So I called a 2nd therapist and explained my situation and my jaw
practically DROPPED when she told me exactly the same thing, that I needed
to follow a
6 month minimum waiting period.
But, of course, us guys are stubborn... and when we think we're right, we
REALLY thing we're right.
So I figured I just had REALLY bad luck and must have called 2 quacky
therapists in a row.
I picked up the phone and called a 3rd... and a 4th...
In all I called SIX therapists, and EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM told me exactly
the same thing.
A couple of them even said 6 months was a bit early, and that I should
actually wait until I put an engagement ring on my girlfriend's finger.
I was blown away, and very upset.
But amidst my anger and frustration, I began to get a little clarity and I
began to see how the therapists' perspective made sense.
They all said that if you introduce your child to a girlfriend and then
things don't work out and she leaves or you break-up with her then your
child is going to be that much less emotionally open to the next woman you
bring into your life.
In other words, he'll be hesitant to BOND emotionally with the next one. He
won't be open to trusting her and relating to her. He'll remain distant, he
might even get hostile.
Not to mention, your child will be sad and hurt that the new woman he bonded
with is no longer around.
Think about it:
Your kid grows up seeing mom and dad together, and remembers at least a few
You and your ex split up, and the kid begins the long road of slowly
adjusting to this new reality.
You eventually get a new girlfriend, your kid starts to have positive
experiences with the two of you as a couple, lots of laughs, making new
memories together, physical contact (hugs, etc) with the new woman.
But then, one day, suddenly, the kid wakes up and this female presence in
his life that he has slowly grown to accept and trust and open up to is
GONE, and you (dad) have a hard time explaining to him in simple terms what
Your kid is left confused, mistrustful, and hurt. You think he's going to be
bouncing for joy the next time you introduce him to a girlfriend?
USE YOUR CALENDAR, NOT YOUR FEELINGS
There are a couple of lessons I learned in going through this myself.
First, I don't always know what's best for my child, even if I THINK I know
best. And sometimes I UNDERESTIMATE the effect of my personal life on my
Another lesson I learned is when it comes to introducing your child to a new
woman in your life, don't make your decision based on your feelings.
Feelings can come and go, and chances are you'll have strong feelings for
several women after your divorce who won't be in your life for all that
We've all heard of the idea of "Rebound Relationships."
Chances are you'll have several of them when you starting meeting women and
Now that you're no longer married, you're probably figuring out for yourself
who you are now, what you want in your new life, mistakes you want to avoid,
And that's OK -
Rebound relationships are fine as long as you don't get sucked into getting
EMOTIONALLY attached to these women and as long as you avoid setting your
kids up for disappointment by entangling them into these initial flings.
When it comes to deciding when to introduce your kids to a new woman in your
life, base your decision on your CALENDAR, not your feelings.
Yes, you'll be tempted to break this rule, especially if you're excited
about a special woman.
But be strong. Don't give into your feelings, and don't give in to her
subtle hints that it'd sure be nice to finally meet these great kids of
In fact, if a woman is pushing to meet your kids, or to have her kids meet
your kids, you better interpret this as a big ole' WARNING.
She might be one of those women who look for "Instant Relationships" - women
who meet a guy, and then want to skip the whole "dating" phase and move
right into a serious relationship - usually because they're insecure and
believe if they don't sink their claws into you quick and deep that you'll
manage to escape.
And the whole "why don't we have my kids meet your kids" thing is something
you REALLY need to watch out for.
Insecure women use this to manipulate and hook you. They know that once they
get in with your kids and establish a relationship with them, you're much
less likely to leave them.
It's a power play. Is this true with every woman?
Of course not. But if a couple of weeks after you meet a woman she starts
talking about meeting your kids, you're going to have to tell her about the
rule you have to protect your precious ones - "It's going to be 6 months,
baby, before you can meet them."
As much as you want to get your own life going, your kid's life is what you
need to consider first. You have a big responsibility to make sure you do
the right thing here.
So, to sum up:
1) Wait 6 months before introducing your kids to a new girlfriend.
2) Explain to your girlfriend that this rule is in place to protect your
3) Watch how she respond to the rule. If she gets angry, says it's
ridiculous, etc., you have a controlling bitch on your hands and you need to
move to a different zip code pronto.
4) Thinking you can introduce your girlfriend as "just a friend" before the
6 month mark is a recipe for disaster.
Don't do it.
HOW MY STORY ENDED
Let me share with you how my story with the girlfriend and the 6 child
I took their unanimous advice to heart, and I told the girlfriend she
couldn't meet Tyler for 6 months.
She was disappointed, and quite frankly, we argued about it.
A month or two later, for unrelated reasons, we broke up.
This proves the power of the 6 Month Principle -
Had I introduced her to Tyler, we still would have broke up - Tyler would
have gotten hurt, and he would have started to mistrust me and any future
women in my life.
Thank God I listened to those quacky therapists.
This is just one of the many situations I went through with my divorce that
you can learn more in my eBook.
If you'd like to read more tips about how stay close to your kids during the
difficult time following a divorce, and at the same time meet new, exciting
women in a responsible way that protects your kids, you really should go
check it out.
There's another lesson I got from this experience that I want to share with
Things aren't always what they seem... and what you think you know,
sometimes you DON'T.
If you don't believe me, you have just one place to look for absolute,
undeniable proof -
Unless you were the guy who was about to walk down the aisle and you KNEW
deep in your heart that you were making a mistake, then you know that your
emotions can lead you to make the wrong long term decisions sometimes.
I've been there man. I know how it is.
The fact is, no matter how much we achieve in business or in other parts of
our lives, our divorce is proof that in some areas we simply don't know as
much as we think.
And you can always learn more.
Thinking we ALREADY know everything gets us into trouble.
If you want to avoid more trouble in your life, the first thing you should
do is get an education on how best to conduct your life, and in particular
your DATING life, now that you're divorced.
To get all the details... to learn more tips about protecting your kids
while creating a life with new woman... AND to learn a simple move that will
drive a woman CRAZY anticipating your first kiss... just go here:
www.Double Your Dating.com
To your success with women,