When Can a Divorced Mom Have Her Boyfriend Sleep Over?

Jennifer Cullen

two heartsAmong my mom friends who are divorced and dating, one of the most frequent topics of discussion is about when is it okay, if ever, for your boyfriend to spend the night when your kids are there?

I've been in that situation. I got divorced when my kids were young: 3 and 5 years old. And I dated a few guys before I met the man who became my second husband.

During that time, I was very protective of my children. They never met any of the men I dated, much less encountered them in my bedroom. I had Thursday nights and every other weekend, when my kids were with their dad, to date and have sleepovers. And I felt strongly that the kids shouldn't be involved in that part of my life until I met someone I was serious about.

And then I did. And we slowly let our families (he has a daughter) get to know each other. But even then he didn't spend the night at my house. Our situation made the choices pretty easy: We lived a few miles apart and had a similar custody schedule.

That's not to say I didn't consider a sleepover. There were many nights when he would come over after work and hang out for a few hours before going home. I would frequently fall asleep on the couch because it just felt so good to be next to him.

He started spending the night at my house after we got engaged and moved in right before we got married. And that was what felt right to us. The most important thing I wanted to model for the kids was that we were in a loving and committed relationship. That this was not a fly by night type of thing.

But every situation is different. I don't judge. It's definitely an individual decision. And I'm happy with the one I made.

Would you have your boyfriend spend the night when your kids are there?


Image via photojenni/Flickr

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