How do men feel about dating women who have children?

This conversation came up the other night with a group of 30-somethings, and all the guys in the group agreed that it's almost impossible to meet a woman over 30 who doesn't have a child. Some of the guys in the group felt that it made dating the woman more difficult, some had no problem with the idea of "playing Daddy", and some felt it was only a problem if the relationship became more serious.

If a woman has a child, does it make guys think twice before dating her?

  • It makes no difference. I only care about whether she's into me or not.
    Vote A
  • It's something I'd only think about before getting serious.
    Vote B
  • It makes me uncomfortable, as I'm not into being a Dad right now.
    Vote C
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In addition: all of us in the group felt concerned about the effect on the children. If a parent gets involved with a new partner, we all agreed it's not healthy to "play Daddy" (or Mommy, for that matter) unless the relationship is becoming serious.


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What Guys Said 2

  • There are some difficulties. One is that the guy will not be #1 in your life. The kids will be. Quite different than dating a woman with no kids. Some men can adapt, others cannot.

    Playing daddy is harder -- men may say they want to but it's different when the child is not your own. If the actual father is in the picture, then it can become a nightmare.

    While the whole thing is becoming more common, I would say this would take a lot of discussion with your new found partner.

  • I chose C, because I'm 20 and I know I'm not ready for children for at least a few more years. Even if I was ready, I'd still be apprehensive. As you said, the guy shouldn't "play Daddy" unless things were getting serious, but I've seen it too many times where the step parent is disrespected by the children and the biological parents. The kid would get disciplined by the step parent, so they go and tell their mom or dad. They let the kid off, because they think the punishment is a little harsh and thus undermining the authority of the step Dad/Mom. In the back of their minds, they know that this person is not the real parent of these children. I'd be apprehensive to that kind of future.


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