Host: When do I introduce the person I am dating to my children?
Gloria Macdonald: People very often ask me when they should introduce their new significant other, the person they are dating to their children. There are no right and wrong answers to this. Every situation is different and you really have to do what you are you comfortable with. The only thing that I would highly recommend to people is that you really don't want to be introducing a stream of people through your children's life. So, wait until you are comfortable that this is a significant relationship that's going to go somewhere that has an opportunity to last for some period of time. You can not always guarantee that a relationship is going to last forever and nor do you want to hide someone for your children, but a lot of it is going to depend upon the type of relationship you have with your children. If you are a family who is always very open and your children have always known what's going on in your life and you discuss things as a family then you are probably going to be introducing someone to your children sooner, rather than later.
If on the other hand you are a family that's much more private, you don't necessarily discuss things in the open, it might take you a little longer to introduce someone you are dating to your children. It also depends upon the age of the children and what they are going through in terms of their relationship with you and their relationship with their other parent, the mother and father whoever else there is. If a separation or divorce has been relatively amicable and everything is going along fine and the kids seem to be have adjusted well, that's going to make things easier also. If you have been through a nasty divorce, a nasty separation and the kids are really hurting through that, you really need to take that into account also. One thing that I generally do suggest as a guideline is that you certainly would not probably introduce someone you are dating to your kids earlier than three months into the relationship. That is just a general guideline and lots of people say six months but again, each situation is unique and different and you need to do what's right for you and your children and the other person that you are dating.