I am a single mother of two boys who have different fathers.
I got my first son when I was a teenager and the father was nothing but a boy, just like I was still a little girl. Our relationship never lasted. He is there for his son, but we knew very early that we could never make our relationship long-term. Years later, I met and fell in love with an amazing man, had a whirlwind courtship and seven months later we were married.
Two months later, I made two discoveries; I was pregnant and marrying this man was the biggest mistake of my life. After three years of tolerating his erratic behaviour and constant infidelities, I just had to walk away. The physical abuse was the final straw for me. I know that for most men, it is difficult to date a woman with a child, let alone two children.
But I am sure it is so much worse when the two children are from different fathers. How do I break this to a new guy when he comes along?
Author of Wake Up, Woman!, Linda Yende, advises:
Let me tell you how you break it to a new guy you have just met; exactly the same way that you have just broken it to me right now. Show me a person who has not had a failed relationship in their life at some point. We all experience hard knocks, we all have a past.
It is just unfortunate that the failed relationships in your life have left you with what some may perceive as a stigma.
Anybody who has a problem with the fact that you have two children from past relationship is clearly not meant for you. Move on. Somewhere out there, there is somebody who is looking for precisely who you are.
Somewhere out there, is a man who adores children and who probably wants to have more children with you, once you get married. I am always fascinated by blended families, where perhaps each partner had one or two children, then they meet and have children together. And the children all regard each other as siblings.
I assure you that you are over-thinking this. Just be yourself. Be happy that you are a woman who is loving and who has not given up on love just because things didn’t go perfectly in your first attempts. You are brave for not giving up on love. And you should be proud of yourself for having such resilience.
Here is a sad reality. Society seems to judge women who have children with more than one father more harshly than it does men. And that is very unfair. But it is a reality that you just have to make peace with because sadly, we cannot change society. Here are a few pointers to help you handle being judged by anybody:
- The only person who can know the absolute truth about you, is you. People can and will have opinions, but never start to doubt yourself.
Have absolute faith in who you are and don’t let other people’s idea of you become yourreality.
- Ultimately, the opinion that really matters is yours.
If somebody doesn’t agree with what you are doing or how you are behaving, don’t feel pressured into changing. Have the courage of your convictions, even when others disagree or don’t understand. Worse still, taking things that are beyond your control into consideration.
- People can’t make you feel anything. You will find yourself feeling judged after someone has said something harsh and judgemental about you.
You will feel pity for yourself and people will make you feel like you should be ashamed of your actions. Shame soon spirals into self-loathing. We can choose how we want to feel. Choose to be happy.
- Someone else’s judgement will be far more important to you. It is so easy to dwell on things, but putting negative energy into running a scenario over and over in your mind is detrimental to your health.
Although their remarks about you may be hurtful, focus your energy on the positive things.
- We don’t need to try to read people’s minds. If we do not have complete trust in our actions, it can be easy to sense disapproval from others who may not even be there and then unnecessarily alter our actions accordingly.
If you want an honest opinion, ask. Clear communication is far easier than second-guessing.
- Compassion changes everything. People with limited vision and steadfast opinions will have a harder life than you. Send them love.
Everyone deserves kindness. Always. I hope you never find yourself being unfairly judged, or indeed forming an opinion of your own without all the facts, but if you do, I hope that these pointers help.
However, I cannot stress this enough, if you happen to meet a man who thinks like that and rejects you for that, then you are better off without him anyway. Clearly he is judgemental and will make you miserable in other areas anyway. It’s his loss and not yours.
No, the right time will come for her to introduce you to the kids. Besides most women out have kids.
Yes. Most women with kids have scores to settle with previous lovers, which might cause the partner pain.
I have a high respect for women with children because they know how to love. Believe me, I’ve seen it before.