momorama's picture

Full Custody & dating

Hi there - new to this site and looking for advice.  I am mother of 3 sons with full custody.  Their father lives in another state and only sees the boys once or twice a year for long weekends. : -(   Two of the boys are in college, the third is in 8th grade.  No problems with the divorce which was 3 years ago.  The kids encouraged me to date, and after dating several guys once or twice, I met a gentleman whom I fell for hook, line, and sinker.  We've dated for over a year and the relationship is moving slowly along.  We recently went on our first vacation together and it was great.  Although we find time to be together intimately, I can't spend as much time away from my youngest now that his brothers are living away from home.  I'm thinking I'd like to invite my friend to spend the night at my house but not sure how to handle this.  My son knows him, likes him, and seems to be in favor of the relationship.  How do I broach this idea with both of these important men in my life?

thanks in advance!

gail Hanson's picture
gail Hanson

I have seen an article in Family Circle that addressed this, they said just be discreet.  I think they are really terribly wrong.  Are you okay with your older boys being intimate with girls they have no intention of marrying?  Would you allow them to sleep with a girl  in your home when they come home for a visit?  Would you be okay with your child thinking of you as a cheap, I'll say date, since I don't want to lower the tone of the disussion too much.

Your son may like this man a lot, he may be in favor of "the relationship," but he's what 13, 14 years old?  He needs to remain ignorant that his mother is a sexual being. 

The other point is about your well-being.  I realize that this is an ideal that was always more honored in the breach, but sexual intimacy ideally occurs in a setting of emotional commitment.  People who are intimate with others when they do not have a legal commitment become accustomed to protecting themselves.  They try not to be too vulnerable.  This makes for bad sex and for a bad self-image and for bad emotional habits when an actual commitment occurs. 

Sex is more important than that.  It is worth waiting for.  And if this guy won't stick around and be a buddy without a sexual payoff, well, then you know who he is, and how he really feels about you, don't you?

junieg's picture

Go for it. Your son is not a baby and this is the 21st century. You have a life too. LIVE it. You can talk to your son about it and ask his opinion. 

momorama's picture

Hi all,

Thanks for all the advice.  Everyone has some valid points.  I wish it was as simple as that and that the details could be summed up in a neat little package.  However, I'm learning that every situation is unique and I'm going to have to stumble my way through this.  Any suggestions on books that address parenting when you have full time custody? thanks in advance,




gail Hanson's picture
gail Hanson

My school district often offers community ed classes for parents of teenagers.  My own philosophy is that you have already told them "a hundred times" most of the things that you need them to learn from you, so at their age 14, I turn from a mommy into an adult resource that they can always count on.  (This does take their cooperation.  My 16 1/2 year-old son has finally signed on to the notion of not having a mommy.)

I think the two keys to success during this age are

1. Keep them busy with good things, sports, drama, volunteering, music

2.  Supervision  (which sounds like being a mommy, but I just arrange to be home doing my stuff when the kids are home.)

Bel's picture

I think go for it, but always follow your gut feeling with this one too!

Sister83's picture

I don't think you should talk to the 13 year-old about this, or ask his opinion, unless and until it becomes apparent that he is uncomfortable. I don't think there is any need to advertise it. Doesn't your son go to bed before you anyway? Can your partner leave early in the morning?

2xstepmom's picture

Another thread from 2007.....doubt you'll get a reply to your thoughtful inquiries. These popped up when there was spam being recently posted to many old posts on this site.