I had to be sure he would be in my life in for a long time. I had a pool party with about four adult guests, him being one of them. We did about five more group outings before he came to do things with just me and my two children.
Dating while separated can hold up and complicate the divorce proceedings, can effect custody and visitation decisions, and rarely but possibly, depending on the state, may be grounds for a lawsuit.
"When a child's parents divorce, the experience always allows leaving a relationship to be a viable option versus hanging in and wrestling with working things out," says Dr.
Fran Walfish, Beverly Hills, Calif.-based psychotherapist and author of "The Self-Aware Parent." That's why it's important to teach your child about relationship-building for the future to ensure she can foster healthy relationships of her own, and be able to work things out with a partner if that's a suitable option.
According to Steinorth, parents can temper children's pessimistic attitudes about relationships by modeling cooperative behavior.
"Parents can continue to model civil, caring and respectful behavior toward each other," she says.