Dating is not easy…and dating when you have a child is even more challenging. Deciding when to involve the kids, how much input the other person will have into your parenting…there’s a lot to consider.
One thing parents on the dating scene have to think about is how involved they’d like their new partner to be; and that’s something the new partner must decide, too – for example, this man who posted about his dating dilemma on Reddit this week.
In a detailed thread called My girlfriend is furious that I think spending 12 hours per day every day playing with her seven year old would be boring. Am I wrong to feel that way?, the man explained his situation.
“I’m home from basic training for holiday block leave and staying the two weeks at my girlfriend’s house by invitation,” he began, adding the pair had been dating for two months.
“Her son is seven with special needs and is non verbal with little motor functionality so she has stayed at home taking care of him since he was born living with her parents.”
Explaining the child loves watching “young kid shows like Dora the Explorer” the man explains that is not remotely an issue for him, as he “fell in love with both of them.”
He adds, “I adore him and could happily spend hours every day reading to him, playing with his toys, watching him enjoy his shows.”
However, an issue arose when he commenced his current visit; simply put, he’s used to spending his downtime “pursuing entrepeneurial (sic) goals as a developer, solving complex challenges with code, planning, learning, creating”, whereas as the mum spends her time looking after every need of her son.
The man says he understands that, and even accepts she doesn’t have time to give him until her son is asleep. So what’s the problem?
“Once I got here with no access to a computer…and nothing to put my mind to aside from her son, I tended to spend a good amount of time on my phone while in the living room. It’s sort of my only source of (somewhat) mentally fulfilling entertainment with ebooks, news, study, and coding…
“She got upset by this after a few days…I explained that it’s easier to focus on interacting when I’m with him for 3 or 4 hours rather than 24/7 and I need something more mentally engaging than interacting with a young kid all day long, that I do spend at least 2-3 hours throughout the day playing with him.”
But apparently, that is not enough for the girlfriend, who is disappointed the man does not dedicate all his time to paying attention to her son. Unsure of what exactly her expectations of him are, the man attempted to clarify things with his girlfriend.