He broke off one relationship because her dream of a downtown condo didn't fit with his need for a yard and swing set."I think sometimes the women I dated didn't realize that single dads still have parenting obligations that, for me, came first," said Ruyter, now 36, who maintains the blog "Memoirs of a Single Dad" (memoirsofasingledad.com) and recently self-published the book "Memoirs of a Dating Dad."Changing landscape As fathers grow more engaged in child rearing, and courts more willing to grant them custody, single dads increasingly are dating with kids in tow — in heart if not in hand.As a single dad wading back into the dating pool, Daniel Ruyter was surprised how many women lost interest when he revealed, always in the first conversation, that he had a son."At first I took it personally," said the Orlando, Fla., information technology analyst, who was 32 when he divorced and got joint custody of his then 5-year-old son."I found it very arbitrary that before they got to know me, they had decided against me."But as Ruyter cycled through "close to 100" first dates and a few long-term girlfriends (a scheduling feat, considering half his week was devoted to his son), his romantic standards heightened in ways they may not have pre-fatherhood.He owes his allegiance to his children, FIRST And that’s a good thing.A dad who lives and breathes his kids’ lives is a mature adult who has got his priorities straight. And when you bring single parents, their former partners, and their children into the mix, things get even messier.
Trying to get too involved too quickly will only lead to resentment from her and her children.Some 2.8 million single dads live with their kids, up 27 percent from 10 years ago and nearly double the number in 1990, according to Matthew Weinshenker, assistant sociology professor at Fordham University, who analyzed 2010 census data.(The number likely includes many joint custody arrangements.) While single dads face many of the same dating challenges as single moms, there are some differences: In a survey of 100 single fathers, the vast majority preferred to date women with children, thinking she would be more selfless and understanding of his commitment as a father, said Ellie Slott Fisher, who conducted the survey as research for her book "Dating for Dads: The Single Father's Guide to Dating Well Without Parenting Poorly" (Bantam).So, if you dated someone for two years, you should wait a year before settling down again.
You can date freely and meet people, but just be careful about rushing into anything too soon.
What I'm trying to say is this: Prioritize the things that are important to you in a relationship, and then keep those in mind.