| 9.7°C Dublin

Close

Premium

Dear David Coleman: Should I let my eldest daughter know that I am dating?

Close

It's vital to discuss the notion of dating, so any anxieties or grievances can be out in the open and any doubts can be expelled

It's vital to discuss the notion of dating, so any anxieties or grievances can be out in the open and any doubts can be expelled

It's vital to discuss the notion of dating, so any anxieties or grievances can be out in the open and any doubts can be expelled

Q My husband and I are separated almost two years and the marriage was well over for about four years before it officially ended. We have three children aged 15, 10 and seven. The older two have both shown clear signs of stress and anxiety about the separation. I'm starting to get a social life again and have met a really nice guy. I have no intention of introducing him to the children, but my teenage daughter is starting to ask questions. Should I let her know I'm dating or is it way too soon?

David replies:  Family separation can be hard for children, as much as it may be hard for parents too. While it may seem to you that the marriage has been over for six years, your children's experience may be that it really only ended two years ago, or whenever the physical separation occurred, of one parent moving out.

Separation and its impact will always be an evolving process for children. They take time to get their heads around different aspects of the new routines and new family dynamic. That requires parents to be mindful and emotionally supportive over an extended time.