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Email of the Day

Dating With Minor Children

Hi Dr. Laura,

I have been told that I am a very stubborn woman. I was told by many people not to marry my now ex-husband. Did I listen? Nope. I married the wrong man. I then kept having kids with this man thinking it would get better this time. Four kids later, it never got better - only worse. The wake up call was from children services and the police informing me that my stay-at-home husband was abusing our kids. Within 24 hours of that call, he was out the door and 8 years later we haven't heard a word from him other than seeing him to sign the divorce papers. He has nothing to do with the kids which really makes me wonder what kind of man did I marry? Not a good one.

I also was stubborn in thinking you were completely wrong about dating with minor children still at home. I did date after my divorce and was serious with a man for a few years. He got close to my kids and then one day decided that he didn't want to be bogged down with just one woman. Out the door he went. However, seeing the effect on my kids was the wake up call...finally. Not only did they have an abusive father who disappeared, but then a man who they grew to love all of a sudden not care he wasn't seeing them anymore. I have never felt so much like a failure as a mother.

I now realize, and practice the advice you have stood so firmly by. Do not date with minor children in the home. Over the past year, I have been there 100% for my kids. I realized that I don't have time to be someone's girlfriend. My time is to be my kids' mom! I have a few more years before my youngest is 18 and I am so glad I didn't waste more time than I did with a boyfriend who didn't care about my kids. I know there are men out there who would love to be with a woman who has 4 kids and one day I will meet that man and he will get to know my "adult" children.

Thank you for finally getting into my stubborn head what was best for my kids.

Tags: Attitude, Behavior, Choose Wisely-Treat Kindly, Divorce, Marriage, Parenting, Personal Responsibility, Values
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