Single Parents: 4 Things Your Kids Are Learning from Your Relationships

Filed in Relationships by on January 30, 2014 0 Comments

stock-footage-young-african-american-children-using-a-modern-wireless-tablet-with-their-parentsAs a single father, I’m always careful about who I date, who I bring around my children and deciding the right time to bring that special someone around my children.  Those are important concerns to think about when raising a child.  Your children deserve to see you happy and in a productive relationship.  Not only is it good for you, but it’s good for the child to see what a healthy relationship looks like.  The challenge we face as singles is that all relationships don’t work out, no matter how good we intend them to be.  Since we know this is the case, what do we want to present to our children in the context of what they see in our relationships?  Single parents should consider these points when entertaining a serious relationship.

Respect

I can’t stress enough the importance of respect in a relationship, for the sake of the children involved.  Children emulate what they see.  If you want your child to accept nothing but respect and to give nothing less than respect in their relationships, you must do the same.  I will take it a step further to say to the men who are reading this, if you want your son to respect women, he needs to see you have the utmost respect for ALL women, especially the women you are in a relationship with.

Selflessness

Relationships require us to give of ourselves.  In a healthy, committed relationship, as we are growing together there will be times we have to sacrifice to help someone else.  We may have to sacrifice time, money, another unhealthy relationship, any number of things which may be necessary to help the partner or the overall relationship.  When children see us give of ourselves, they become much less selfish and much more giving, which all parents would like to see develop in their children.

Trust

As a father of two girls, I can attest to the importance of instilling trust in young ladies.  The best way to do this is for your children to see you with a person you can trust and who trusts you.  I have had many women I have coached who never learned to trust.  Much of the reason they didn’t learn to trust is because their mothers were often distrusting of men.  We can change this narrative.  I want my daughters to see me being open and honest, not sneaking around with another woman or having a general distrust for women.  Have relationships with people you trust and who trust you and your children will grow up with the ability to trust others.

Commitment

Commitment is tough for singles, because we are just that—singles.  The reality is, when we start dating someone seriously and  if we are committed to finding out if the relationship will work,  then we should be totally committed.  If you as a couple are ring-shopping and looking at houses, it’s time to be committed.  It’s also time for your kids to see your level of trust has turned into a level of commitment toward each other and the relationships.  When kids see commitment, they are much less likely to be commitment-phobic.

Rachel Cruze says “More is caught than taught.”  This is a valuable lesson.  Children become who they see, in many instances more than what is told to them.  Show good examples of healthy relationships and your children are more likely to follow in your footsteps and have healthy relationships of their own when they become adults.

Also published on BlackandMarriedwithKids.com

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About the Author ()

Jay Hurt is the author of The 9 Tenets of a Successful Relationship-for Singles. Personal experience, a liberation through faith and an appreciation for his perspective led Jay to share his insight on relationships. Dealing with challenging topics by confronting them with faith and common sense, Jay aspires to share wisdom to help others become fulfilled and blessed in their relationships. Jay lives in Nashville, TN and has two daughters, Kristina and Jalen.

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