How long before you met each other's DC?(37 Posts)
Just wondering how long you waited before introducing your DC to your new significant other and his/her DC?
Is 10 months too soon? All DCs concerned are between 2-3 years old.
Sorry this is all completely new to me and I'd like to work out what is acceptable...
Doesnt' sound too soon to me, assuming you've both fully moved on as single parents and the kids are already used to the fact that their parents don't live together any more with contact routines firmly established.
DH met my kids after a few weeks, just as a friend at first. I met his after about 4 months when we both felt things were looking serious. But his were older so this was the official introduction of a new GF.
With kids of age 2-3 there's no reason at all not to meet them just like you'd introduce any other friend into their lives - on a casual basis. So just meet up at the park with the kids like any other play date and take it from there.
Yes both moved on as single parents and things are serious / getting serious. He's suggested going on holiday all together - not sure what to think about that. Sounds a bit intense. I think I prefer the going to the park for an hour idea (and us going on holiday without the DC!).
DH met my DS after a year, but DS was older and more likely to see through any 'just friends' stories. I think 10 months sounds fine for younger dc. A holiday sounds like something for the longer term - I think we did our first holiday together after a couple of years and that felt right for us.
Yeah, I'd avoid the holiday suggestion as a first or early meeting - there would be little or no opportunity for the kids to potentially have their alone time, alone time with just their parent or wind down time away from the children they didn't know prior to the holiday. A playpark/day out meeting would be far easier on all concerned - a holiday would presumably also ramp up the anxiety of the children not getting on together?
I don't think 10 months is too soon at all. I met DP's son after 2 or so months, and I felt this was too soon, but DP's ex had mentioned my name to DSS (DP tagged me on Facebook, and would occasionally call DSS on Skype from my house with me in another room, which led her to mention me) and from there onwards, DSS wanted to meet me because he saw a couple of my comic book artworks Ideally I think we would have waited 6 months, but after our initial meeting (I met DP's ex first) I didn't see him again for another month or so, just said hello with DP spoke to him on Skype.
Hmmm yes. So my initial thoughts on holidaying together had legs. Not a great idea. Has potential to be very stressful, in fact.
He said he is also happy for us to just holiday together, if we can manage to get both ex's to agree to childcare, at the same time.
Dd met now dp after 3 months (18m old at the time), it was a one off appointment that we both needed to attend. After that she didn't meet him again till nearly 7m in
I'd have some holiday time together without kids, if you can manage it.
For our first holiday together we went to a youth hostel where we could each have a family room with our own kids, to allow us to function as separate units as much as we needed. You might want to think whether something similar might work for you all? Actually, by the time we went the kids were getting on well so ended up sharing rooms, but we hadn't had to comit to that early on when we booked.
But before that, why not just have some days out together, hanging out just as you might hang out with any other single parent friend? You'll get a chance to see how each other parent, which I think is really essential for deciding whether the relationship really has a future.
Yeah - the last thing you want to do when doing introductions is already feel stressed by the magnitude of something like a holiday, which with kids, is already stressful enough as it is! There are just too many variables that would require controlling, which doesn't really sound particularly relaxing for anybody.
That said, the kids are younger - doing something similar with an older child (say, 5-6) would probably provoke more disobedience or issues as they tend to be a bit more compliant to authority at that age (as in, they look to their parents for safety, oppose to an older child saying "Mummy/Daddy made me do this" which invites blame). I'd definitely suggest a day trip out - being mindful of individual kids schedules (naps, if any, or behaviour when hungry/tired/overwhelmed).
I don't have kids, so when I started to get to know DSS I wasn't really aware of his individual quirks - DP was fantastic in really explaining his particular behavioural patterns when over stimulated, overtired, hungry, bored and ill. Maybe worth before you do your "big day out" you and DP sitting down, and advising each other what to look out for? Like "Oh, when Sarah is getting hungry, she starts grizzling but also denies being hungry" or "Joseph gets hyperactive when he needs to eat, like final burst of adrenaline" - I'd say this is especially true if any of your children have additional needs
And yes - I agree with bluelillies - if you've not met his DC, or he yours, I'd say joining up on a day where your OH has his children would be good for exact reason bluelillies said - you get a gauge on his parenting, and how his children behave. Means the introduction is a little more sedate - maybe you could do that a couple of times each, drop in conversation that you also have DC's, see the response of OH's DC (the children may express interest in meeting yours).
Also eliminates the overwhelming feeling for both you and the children of meeting everyone at once? If your OH DC's know you before they meet your children, you've already got a pre-existing relationship that young children tend to trust.
Thank you all. Some really good advice and food for thought.
You'll get a chance to see how each other parent, which I think is really essential for deciding whether the relationship really has a future. - yes I completely agree with this statement. Will be really interesting to see him interact with his DC and will definitely be an indicator of whether we will be compatible long term.
Might be better for me to meet his DC on my own at first (i.e. without my own DC) and vice versa. And keep the meeting short and sweet. Then build it up. Good point about gaining trust.
Also great idea to give DP a heads up on DC behaviours before the meeting so we're all prepared for different eventualities should the happen. And they will happen!!
I am going to go with a different thought here and say the earlier the better in some respects. DP and I introduced DDs aged 4 and 5 very quickly compared to advice above as whether they got on was likely to determine whether our relationship had a future. As much as we were convinced we were 'right' for each other, we'd have equally found it difficult had we established a relationship and then introduced the girls, both used to being only children, only for it to cause issues in our relationship.
I am in a different situation in that i knew dp and his children before we got together and he knew mine.
He has his children full time with very little childcare options so we were limited in what we could do together in the early stages.
Our kids are a bit older than yours also, which i think is more challenging.
The first few times we went out with the children we passed it off as a playdate type things for the children. Then, when it was obvious we were getting on, we separately discussed it with our children to see how they felt about us being a couple.
I agree with pp who said it is good to meet the children early on because if there was a problem with them then obviously the relationship couldnt continue.
10 months with 2/3 year olds is fine. Good luck
Have told him I wouldn't be bringing my DC on holiday and he agreed it would be too intense.
So we are going on holiday just the two of us instead.
They are young kids so his parenting style is probably quite crucial. I know it sounds harsh but do look out for any really indulgent or guilt ridden parenting. If the kids look secure and there are rules from your DP - it isn't too chaotic, then it is a lot easier to eventually start to get a relationship, as boundaries and already there.
How does it fit with your children and your parenting? It might be good to dip in and out of his time with kids, and you with yours, keeping it light, over a period of months.
And then ask your DP about how he feels about different issues that you think might be different than yours, before you move in?
I was friends with DP for a while so we introduced the kids quite early, we both had full-time DCs, tbh I was quite sure we'd never have a relationship! His parenting seemed a lot more in line with mine but I really wasn't looking hard enough! I wish I'd had a few conversations before I moved in.
...all this stuff to think about...
thank you everyone for replying, its been very helpful
Introduced my DP to my at the time 3 year old after about 5 months as I knew it was serious by then.
Ex-h introduced his now fiancé much quicker (I think after about 2 months).
Both went the route of a family day out to a fun kids place. Both went well and dd adores my DP. We just took it slowly and didn't rush too much contact too soon.
DP met my 2 year old DS on the weekend for the first time, we have been together for 4 months. We kept the meet brief (2 hours) and went out for coffee and a walk as we agreed it might be better than just bringing him to my house. It went really well.
I also think that it is too early for a holiday together with all the kids. Enjoy your holiday just the two of you!
We were led by the children really, they were just 5.
I met my kids (DP kids) after a few months, we knew we were serious about each other, just felt right to meet them. I was so nervous meeting these two little people who were my DP world!
We had a lunch at first, I was introduced as daddy's friend - we drew cats!
Then we did a fun day out
Then we did tea at their, now our home and made cupcakes
After that we just spent more and more time together, I was worried kids would feel a bit miffed I was around more and more but the opposite happened actually - they would ask their dad when they would see me again... My drawing capabilities far exceed his and still do fact we drew cats together was a real winner for two five year olds apparently.
I was very lucky I think, they are great children but we just clicked - I think on our third or fourth time together my now DS asked are you going to get married.... bless his little socks
Wish you lots of luck but will say enjoy time together as a couple, think that's so important! Your little ones are so little that I think it will make things easier
Mine was a very different situation.
We met at a house party and his eldest ds was also there with his gf (now wife)
His dc were 17, 15 and 13.
My ds was 19.
They all knew we were dating but it was about 8 months before my ds and oh met up, oh came for coffee at a time I knew ds would be home. I wanted to be sure we were a real item before full introductions. They chatted over coffee and then ds went to his room. Oh went home after a half hour. It was about a year before we started to properly just spend the evenings at my home.
At about 18 months we had a night 10 pin bowling with all 4 boys which went well.
They were all too old to be doing the regular happy family regular days out bit.
At about 3 years I started to spend more time at his, my ds had started to house share at uni. Eventuality I moved in, we reassured my ds that it was his home also when he wanted it to be.
We've now been together 20 Years and all is good. We took things very slowly with dc and introductions.
Lady, I met my Dad when I was 20 yours is a lovely story
That man loved my mum so much, it took us a while to bond but we did and I loved him as a dad he helped me so much in so many ways! strangely we used to play wiii bowling sadly he died last year but he was an amazing man who helped me so much
We were both invited to a wedding a week after we got together and obviously all the kids were there. We sat at the same table and they all got on OK.
My youngest DS (mouth almighty) told DP's kids that their Dad was his Mum's new boyfriend (no idea how he knew!). Cue much sniggering and giggling and asking when we were getting married from all four of them.
After that there seemed no point in hiding it.
BUT it wasn't our first relationship since splitting with our exes which made a difference. They were all used to seeing their parents with other people and found the whole thing hilarious!!
So a lot of different stories which just goes to prove it depends on each particular circumstance.
Thank you all for sharing, I feel very reassured x
I think someone upthread has suggested it's good to meet each other's kids without your own with you. I think that's a good idea - if practical, as it gives you a chance to connect with your DP's child without having to worry about your own. But I'd be a bit cautious of getting too close to them without having your own child with you - one of the things my DD found a bit hard when she first met DH's DC was that she was quite fond of DH by then, but he was suddenly rather distant to her, as I guess he didn't want his DS (same age as DD) having to watch some strange child climbing all over his dad. Better not to get too close to them before your own kids are part of the mix.
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