I’ve done the math with various living and return scenarios and it can be done. Will those who’ve short circuited their careers during the financial crisis feel the pull to return to full time work and maximize their earnings potential again? What about all our “lifestyle design” and “digital nomad” friends who had a rough time landing something stable they truly love? Those who are able to retire early are often cherished.I certainly admire those who are able to cut down their desires to the bare bones and live a very frugal lifestyle.My date has only the fondest memories of watching his dad court his mom on their weekly date nights and annual parent-only vacations — in addition to the family road-trip. “My dad made it clear that his relationship with my mom was the center of everything, while he was also the best dad ever,” he said.) highlighted a 2005 essay by Aylete Waldman about the fact that she puts her husband and their fantastic sex life above their four kids. Four children with whom I spend a good part of every day: bathing them, combing their hair, sitting with them while they do their homework, holding them while they weep their tragic tears. If a good mother is one who loves her child more than anyone else in the world, I am not a good mother. In the event you don’t seek a romantic partner, where do you focus that energy if not on your children? Looking forward to that business trip even though you have to leave the kids at home? The most interesting thing about the essay was the resulting shitstorm of controversy which landed Waldman on a much-viewed Oprah episode during which a hostile audience nearly attacked her. Cliche as it may sound: You gotta put yourself first. You must make it a top priority to hang out with other adults — girlfriends, dates, relatives and friends. See Foe Romance Subtext for the less explicit version of this, and Fatal Attraction when it's more dangerous. It’s very common for guys with kids to write in their profiles: “My kids come first,” or “My daughter is the center of my world! You want a potential mate to know that your life includes the giant presence of a kid or four. Plus, if you’ve gone through divorce or another crisis that landed you as a single parent, you are no doubt concerned about giving your kids extra care and sense of security. But it is even trickier if one or both of the parents put the kids before their partner.
In fact, that is the big takeaway: Stop feeling guilty.
Another’s girlfriend eventually broke up with him after several years because he rarely made time to spend alone with her, instead expecting constant family time with his son.
Ultimately, failure to put their partner first was a sign these guys were not ready for a serious relationship, or at least not with those particular women, and that is totally normal.
But in this moment when men are struggling to claim their place as equal parents while society expects divorced dads to be the lackadaisical weekend father, I get why you are compelled to go overboard with your expressed devotion. If you are indeed ready for a real love, create a space for her.
Stop putting kids first Imagine a relationship that centers on the two of you, and all the stability and care your kids will take from that.