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Great guy. Not so great dad.

For some single parents the prospect of returning to the dating scene may eventually have its appeal. Here is a reminder that the rules have changed in a big way. Can you find a prince charming who can be a great parent for your kids?
Hope After Divorce, FamilyShare Modified: August 13, 2014 at 1:49 pm •  Published: August 19, 2014

No matter how negative your feelings about marriage were when you first got divorced, there comes a time in almost every divorcée’s life when she starts dating again; even thinking that a second marriage may lie in her future.

But things are different now than when you were a young single gal dating men and responsible for only yourself. Now, it’s a package deal. Now, it’s you and the kids. And now any fellow you’d consider marrying needs to be evaluated not just for his suitability as a husband but for his potential as a dad.

You and me and family makes — we

What’s more, he may well have kids of his own. And they have to figure into the equation, too. Even if they don’t live with him, they surely spend some time with him. This may be every weekend, every other weekend, Wednesday nights — or if he and his ex live in cities that are distant from each other, the kids may spend all summer with him and probably some time on other school breaks, too.

Meeting the 'friend'

But leaving aside the question of whether you get along with his kids or whether your kids get along with his kids, he, himself, may be problematic.

If you were able to delay the new man in your life from meeting your kids till after you were sure he had real husband potential, you probably didn’t have a chance to see how he interacts with kids. When you finally introduced him to your kids, though, you may have been disappointed or even dismayed at the way he treated them.

Who's the boss?

Of course, I’m assuming that if he got seriously out of line you would toss him out faster than week-old garbage. But what if he doesn’t abuse the kids or anything drastic like that, but your parenting style and his simply don’t mesh? What if you’re a lenient, laissez-faire type and he’s a strict, you’d-better-tow-the-line disciplinarian? Or, for that matter, vice-versa? What if your rules and expectations vary radically, and he won’t change his views?

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