new partner to your children until you have a committed relationship.
When you decide to
introduce your new partner to your children, pick a casual or an informal event
where the others in attendance and/or the focal activity will take from the
awkwardness of the situation. If
possible, arrange it as a “coincidental” meeting. Keep it brief.
When you first introduce
your new partner, introduce them as an acquaintance or a friend.
Don’t provide your
“friend” with the specifics of the children’s living circumstances during
After the “friend”
leaves, continue in your activity with your children.
Repeat this type of
“chance” encounter several times, extending the time you and your partner
spend together with each meeting.
When the time is right,
suggest an outing where your partner can join you and your kids in an activity
that is of common interest (e.g., walking the dog in the park).
Don’t quiz your kids
on how they feel about your “friend”.
If the kids ask if this
person is “more” than an acquaintance, be honest.
Repeat this procedure to
meet your partner’s children.
Once your partner has
become integrated into an activity with you and your children, plan an activity
where the partner’s children can join in too.
Remember, it will be less awkward if there is an activity involved, and
other people are around.
Allowing the kids to
bring along one of their friends will also help prevent awkwardness; and may
make it a lot easier to convince the children to attend.
Keep your expectations
in check. Remember, your primary goal at this stage (which lays a
foundation for good relationships in the future), is simply to introduce the
children to the adults, and the children to one another; not necessarily to have
The information contained on
this page is for the personal use of stepfamily members visiting this web site.
All other use, reproduction, distribution or storage of this work, in whole or
in part, by any and all means, without the express written permission of the
author, is strictly prohibited.
Stepfamily Foundation of