Nothing seems to generate jealousy after a divorce more than when one parent has a new love interest. In most cases the jealousy has nothing to do with the fact that their ex has a new partner. What bothers people though is that this new love interest will be around the children. Very few people are able to accept someone else stepping into that role, even if only for a little while.
This is something that divorced couples do end up dealing with though. Some individuals date seriously for a while and then move on to someone else. Others will find someone that they eventually marry so your children will eventually have a step-parent in their lives.
You certainly can’t stop your ex-spouse from being with someone else, nor do you have a right to dictate to them who they can, and cannot date. There are no laws that govern dating and romantic relationships after divorce, so even if you don’t like it you will have to make the best of it. Since your concern will be for your children you need to make sure they are well cared for. If you feel your ex-spouse is a good parent then you shouldn’t have too much fear. It is extremely unlikely that they will be with another adult who isn’t going to treat the children well.
The hatred and animosity that often grows though between an original parent and someone that the other parent dates or marries is often unbelievable though. You can be sure the children will quickly pick up on it. They may feel guilty telling you that they like the other person. They may not want to be around them as they feel it is being disloyal to their you.
Keeping Communication Open:
It is important to discuss the issue openly with the children though. They may have a hard time initially seeing their parent with someone new. Even though some children understand divorce, secretly many of them hold out for their parents to get back together. When they see their parents with other people though the reality that it isn’t going to happen settles in and has to be addressed.
It is important to express to your children that they need to have respect for those individuals that their other parent dates or eventually marries. They need to know those individuals don’t replace their own parents though. It is also advisable to discuss with your former spouse any concerns you may have pertaining to parenting roles and arrangements if your ex-spouse’s new love interest is going to remain in the picture over the long-term, or even become your children’s step parent. The lines between parent and step-parent may be blurred here as far as rules and things so make sure you clarify what the situation is going to be.
You do need to be prepared for the fact that the new love interest will likely be accompanying your ex-spouse to events for your child. If you can take the time to say hello and be warm on some level it is going to help. Likewise, you need to avoid telling your new love interest about issues you have had with your ex-spouse. You don’t want them to have a negative perception of that person based on what you have shared.
It can definitely sting when you see your ex-spouse with a new love interest. This is more likely to be true if you are still in love with them on some level. Yet you have to do your best to let go. You don’t have to become best friends with their new love with whom they are dating, but it is to your advantage to get to know them on some level. After all, they will be spending time with your children.