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Think twice before introducing kids to dates

Individuals in Louisiana and elsewhere who have gone through a divorce think that their children will like the new person they choose to date. However, it does not always happen that way. Making kids comfortable with new partners might not be easy, but it's very important to be done properly. Here are some tips on how to achieve harmony between the children and a new person in your life.

1. Don't introduce the kids prematurely. Get to know a prospective boyfriend or girlfriend away from other distractions. Once you decide this is a steady relationship, the time could be right to introduce the kids. You do not want to make the introduction too early in case the relationship doesn't take; don't upend a child's attachment to an adult again.

2. Make sure the divorce is far enough in the distance that a child could accept a new person spending time at the house.

3. Understand that the children might not be ready to share their parents with someone new and prepare to go slowly. For a dad who has started dating, kids can become upset because they probably see their fathers less than ever and a new person is daring to get in the way. When it comes to mothers, children between ages 5 and 10 don't want to share their mothers, and older teens don't want to witness their mothers treating another man with affection.

4. Figure out why you want the kids and the new partner to meet. Make sure the motives are genuine and right for all parties involved. Don't try to create an instant family or rebuild the family that once was there.

It is important that all parents bring a new person into their family slowly. Take time to make sure the relationship is on solid footing before the children and the new partner meet.

Source: Huffington Post, "Dating After Divorce: When To Introduce The Children," Kimberly Seltzer, Oct. 31, 2012

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