Conversation Starters: Do you want a baby?

6 01 2009

If you’re dating a man with kids from a previous marriage, don’t wait to talk about whether or not you’ll have a child together. The last thing you want to do is find out after the marriage certificate is signed that your new spouse has no intention of having any more kids when you’ve always dreamed of giving birth. (Believe me, girls. I’ve heard this sad story from more than one stepmom!) Make sure you know exactly where you both stand on the baby making issue. Spend an evening at home, spread out a tasty dinner, and uncork the wine. Then use this list of questions to get the discussion flowing:

  1. Do we want a baby? Why or why not?
  2. How do we think a new baby will affect our relationship as a couple?
  3. Will our stepchildren/children welcome a new half-sibling? What can we do to facilitate good feelings?
  4. Do we think a new baby will affect our relationship with the ex(es)?
  5. Do we think Stepmom will feel different about the new baby than she feels about her stepchildren? Is that okay?
  6. Will Stepmom’s child have to follow the same rules as Dad’s kids?
  7. How will we both feel if we can’t have, or decide not to have, a baby?
  8. Will you resent your stepchildren if you can’t or don’t have a baby?
  9. Do we make a good parenting team? If not, how can we become one?
  10. What if Dad has already had a vasectomy? Is he willing to have a reversal surgery? Can we afford it?
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Dating a divorced man with kids?

15 12 2008

A vast majority of newly married couples report they did not have conversations about important topics such as money, sex or the number of children each person wants before the marriage license is signed. Part of the conflict that arises in the first few years of marriage comes from problems in these areas that were never discussed during the courtship stage of the relationship. If you are dating a man with children it is absolutely critical that the two of you put everything on the table long before you decide to move in together or tie the knot. The fact is, remarriages have a higher rate of failure than first marriages because the stressors that come with stepfamily dynamics can erode the marriage. The more armed you are with information, the better!

You can find many conversation starters in my book at the end of each chapter in the Discussion Topics for Two sections. I also came across a free teleseminar that you might find of interest:

Yvonne Kelly, founder of The Step and Blended Family Institute and David Steele, founder of The Relationship Coaching Institute are presenting a free teleseminar on Thursday, January 22, from 9-11 p.m. EST. Register at www.stepdating.ca to reserve your spot and they’ll send you a copy of the Stepdating Report.