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2) Remember, these dads are already carrying the burden of their choice to divorce, a decision which many may have already told him is a “selfish” act.
The shaming around divorce in our culture is epidemic.
If you want to have a cup of coffee with a single dad like these, bring an open heart and get ready to meet a complex and deeply interesting human being.
But in the beginning, be content to be on the outside looking in.
After all, what is the goal when you're dealing with children? Good parenting helps foster empathy, honesty, self-reliance, self-control, kindness, cooperation, and cheerfulness, says Steinberg.
It also promotes intellectual curiosity, motivation, and desire to achieve.
♦◊♦ Any co-parenting dad who is taking care of his kids, is going to have the days when they are “on duty” and the days when they are “off duty.” And if you are considering a relationship with a co-parenting dad, you should know that these two modes of being are very different.
1) The on-duty co-parenting dad can be an “all business” kind of fellow. For any of us, being around a single dad when they are with their little ones, can feel like being on the outside looking in.
"Parenting is one of the most researched areas in the entire field of social science," says Steinberg, who is a distinguished professor of psychology at Temple University in Philadelphia.
But this is out of necessity, as parenting after divorce is about creating regular predictable rituals and rhythms for children.
After creating these new, safe, predictable spaces in which their kids can navigate the changes of divorce, dads may be very hesitant to meet their own needs socially or sexually. This is because they fear disrupting these safe spaces and rhythms in any way.
This means letting perceived slights go, finding energy to be kind, choosing paths that are collectively helpful and making service to his little ones a central part of his life.
Sounds like a recipe for a good marriage doesn’t it? Welcome to one of the great ironies of co-parenting.