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I'm still dating the man who is the father of an 8 yr old girl, and we've been together for a month now. We're having fun together, and he's been great about giving his daughter and me space to bond 1-on-1, while also insisting on having activities that the 3 of us do together.

 

His ex knows about the relationship, and she is supportive.

 

The problem is: the three of us (me, my boyfriend, and his daughter) went away for the weekend together for a family function. I had my own room, and my main squeeze shared a room with his daughter. Everything went well, until it was time to come home. When we got back to town, I went home, and he took her to her mother's house before heading off to his place. During that evening, the reality of her parents not getting back together hit her--HARD.

 

I haven't seen her this week, in part because we figured it was best to give her a good dose of father-daughter time so she realized that wasn't being threatened...and in part, because although she likes me, she sees me as being in the way of her mom's happiness.

 

She's been told by both of her parents that I'm not a replacement, just an addition. I don't know what to do, and would love any feedback.

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Hi Shaker

 

I was a single father for 2 years, and the only advice i can give you is to take the lead from your partner. He knows his daughter better than you (i don't mean that to sound harsh), and will do what's best for her. You may find there is no easy way through this. It will just take time for the child to adjust to changes which she has no control of. I imagine she's been confused for some time already.

 

Unfortunately all you can do is be supportive of the situation without playing an active part in resolving it, as frustrating as that may be. Don't run the risk of the child resenting you. If you feel you have a future with your partner, just be patient.

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Thanks, guys.

 

(He's been single for 2 1/2 years. We've known each other professionally for 8 months or so, and are both on the same page about how seriously we're taking things. I'm the first girlfriend he's introduced his daughter to, so it's new territory for him and her.)

 

Doblersdream: Thank you for sharing your experience. I'll continue taking his lead about all of this.

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Well, in my opinion, if you and him have only been seeing each other for a month, I think its a little soon for you and the 8 yr old to be around each other.

 

I don't agree. From experience, it's almost impossible for a single parent to conduct a relationship without the child being involved in some way.

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I don't agree. From experience, it's almost impossible for a single parent to conduct a relationship without the child being involved in some way.

 

Well I don't have kids, so my opinion is completely irrelevant, but my best friend since the time I was six was raised by a single mother. My friend was always meeting the new "flavor of the wk". It made her angry, bitter, jealous, confused. I just think her mother should have waited until the relationship had developed in to something with more substance and a chance at lasting before she brought the guy home to met her daughter.

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Well I don't have kids, so my opinion is completely irrelevant, but my best friend since the time I was six was raised by a single mother. My friend was always meeting the new "flavor of the wk". It made her angry, bitter, jealous, confused. I just think her mother should have waited until the relationship had developed in to something with more substance and a chance at lasting before she brought the guy home to met her daughter.

 

I agree, and apologise if i didn't make my opinion clearer. I was referring to a single parent in a relationship needing to have the child involved in some way with the new partner.

 

What i don't agree with is exposing a child to a series of flings or 'flavor of the wk' as you put it. Totally not what i was advocating, and i can imagine how angry and jealous it made your friend.

 

I had my period of 'flings' but not one of them met my son.....

 

Apologies for getting a little off topic here. Shaker, please let us know how things develop, or if we can offer you any more advice/support.

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It'd just be best to let the three of them iron this out and then wait until his daughter is completely comfortable "sharing" her dad, so to speak, before trying to get re-introduce yourself into her life. You can't force kids to be comfortable, or to easily accept the demise of their parents' relationship.

 

You're very lucky that the mom is so understanding - that is a huge blessing. It'd be VERY hard if she weren't supportive. Just let it iron itself out without trying to help. Be supportive of your boyfriend.

 

Also, please keep an eagle eye on your relationship, and if it's starting to fall on hard times, don't try to re-introduce yourself into her life at all, unless you know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you're in it for the long haul. I'm talking engagement or some other form of commitment. My dad brought woman after woman after woman into my life and I was in a consistent state of confusion and anger. Anger with my dad, anger with these women... it was just always confusing. I wished often that he wouldn't have introduced me to any of them until he knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that he was going to stay with them.

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