Dating man with child

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I don’t want to call children baggage, but let’s face it, you’re not looking at him telling you he has a kid with pleasant surprise.

You may be freaking out right now, but before you start hyperventilating, just chill out.

Here are some tips to help get you through this situation. Dating a guy with a child isn’t the same as dating a guy without one.

They have different obligations and aren’t looking for women to walk in and out of their life. If you’re still in the phase of getting drunk every weekend and spending your Sundays in bed sobering up, then you’re not ready.

Knowing that I was moving back to a small town after years of living in cities, I looked at my therapist and said: "I can't date someone who has children. And while I was in love with both the man and the kid, I was totally lost. There is nothing wrong with single or divorced parents. But my friends back home in the small town I was moving back to? He had a son with his ex-girlfriend, who I also remember from my past.

I was in a relationship with a man who had a 10-year-old son. I was 29 years old, and the majority of my friends in Chicago were childless or childfree, whichever term you prefer. I knew that by moving back here, I was inviting many children into my day-to-day life -- and probably my love life, too. Despite all of my fears, I reconnected with this man from my youth.

I know you don’t want to believe it, but this guy that you’re interested in, he had a life before you.

Including past relationships and sometimes that includes children.

[Read: 50 relationship questions to test your compatibility] #2 The children come first.

You have to make sure you're serious and your partner is serious before you bring the kiddos into the mix.

It's not fair to the kids if you aren't going to stick around.

James and I met on a snowboarding holiday in early 2011, and he was perfect for my non-committal tendencies.

Recently separated from his wife of five years, he was proud dad to a three-year-old boy, and living in his parents’ spare bedroom awaiting a divorce settlement. The prospect of me – a carefree woman not yet 30 – dating a man with kids was met with fear and trepidation by my friends. The only thing she’d previously seen me take responsibility for was which pub we should go to for a night out, and I often got that wrong.

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