I met my fair share of men while dating. I met good men, and bad men, and every kind of man in between. I spent a long time looking for love in the wrong places. Hell I spent too much time looking for love period. It’s true what they say though. When you stop looking, that’s when it will find you. And man was it unexpected.
You see, I’d made it pretty clear to myself what I was looking for in a relationship. I set expectations early on. I didn’t have any desire to fool around or waste my time on anyone who wasn’t serious. But no one I met could seem to get it together. And then Michael came around.
It wasn’t all at once that I fell for him like you sometimes hear about. I fell in love with him a little at a time. We met and I was charmed. He was handsome and had the most genuine kindness about him. He was incredibly intelligent. He enriched and challenged me with his bright conversation. He had short term goals and long term dreams. He was something else. But…he had a child.
I never set out dating with a specific ban on dating anyone with children, (although I know people who do) I just kind of avoided it inadvertently. It’s not that I was some kind of child-hater, because I wasn’t. But at such a young age I wasn’t sure if I was ready to fill that kind of role in someones life. I wasn’t sure if I was ready for the potential responsibility. There I was, faced with a decision I couldn’t avoid. Turns out it was the best decision I could have made.
Once I let my fear of the unknown fizzle out and got used to some of the big life changes associated with being with someone who is a parent, I realized that being with a dad is actually kind of rad! So if you’re on the fence about giving that guy with kids a chance, here’s a few things I love the most about dating a dad:
1 He’s a nurturer. He’s taking care of a tiny human. Dad’s do it all. They calm the tears, heal the boo-boos, and teach. The reason I was so torn about being with someone turned out to be the very same reason I sealed the deal. There’s nothing quite like seeing the love a man has for his child (And hello, its pretty hot too!)
2. He’s got his priorities in check. He now knows that the world doesn’t revolve around him. He’s got more important things to do than be out with the boys every single night. He has someone to take care of. He’ll make this clear to you too. He doesn’t want to mess around. He has an example to set in his child’s life and he also wants someone who can do the same.
3. He knows what he wants. The guessing games are over. Most men who have children don’t have time for the games. And while he probably isn’t looking to jump into anything too quickly for the sake of his children, the commitment fear isn’t there. Chances are you probably don’t have to worry about whether or not he’s looking for something serious.
4. You know what you’re getting. One of the things I love the most about being with Michael is that I know without a doubt in my mind that he is a good father. And I know that he will continue to be a good father to any children we may have in the future. That’s something that most people can’t know for sure until they’re already there.
5. Your relationship with him will add value to your life. This is the biggest thing by far. Being with a man with children will put some things into perspective for you-especially if you don’t have any children of your own. My relationship with Michael has changed my life in all of the best kinds of ways. It’s shown me that I am not the center of the universe. It’s shown me that there’s more important things in life than what you have or what you’re doing on a Friday night. Above all its shown me what it means to really love. I didn’t just fall in love with Michael. I fell in love with his son too. There’s been no time in my life where I’ve learned more than I’m learning right now.
Now don’t get me wrong, dating a father is not without it’s challenges. There’s ex’s and last minute visitation changes. We can’t run off on last minute weekend trips or decide that we DO want to want to go out to join our friends at ten o’clock on a Saturday night. But I realized quickly that all of the things I thought would bother me about being in a relationship with someone with a child, became the exact things that solidified the meaning of my relationship. Suddenly all of the superficial was gone and I was left with a relationship with true meaning.
So don’t be so quick to dismiss the dad! You might be missing out on the possibility for a pretty meaningful relationship, and a pretty incredible man. Not all men are great fathers, but many fathers are great men.
I had the privilege of falling in love with a father. What’s your story?