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  #21  
Old 02-11-2014, 08:10 AM
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SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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Like LR said, it depends on the kid. You've mentioned before that your son gets attached really easily, and gets very sad when people go away. In your case, getting to know partners outside the home and then keeping them on a friends-basis with your son is a reasonable course of action.

My point is that the example doesn't make the rule. There is no universal script for "poly parents." What's good for you may not be good for other people, and vice-versa.

For some kids, it may be better to have their parents home more often and not out dating, especially if they're already busy with work and other commitments. For example, Auto is the working parent. Zoffee has anxiety and can't drive or go out much, so she also runs most of the household errands. She also does drag, and that takes her away too. At the end of all that, it would be more deleterious for her to have all her dates away from home, because it would mean even more time spent away from her kids. Because she's normalized the concept of "people come and go," her kids don't think much of it when the people in specific roles, i.e. casual partners, suddenly stop coming around. They meet their needs for stability and love and connection through their family.
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  #22  
Old 02-11-2014, 08:31 AM
london london is offline
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I don't recall saying that. What I've said is that my son doesn't forget people and spots inconsistencies in behaviour. There is also the element of wanting him to understand how one can misuse sex and consent issues before I promote casual relationships so I don't want him to see me indulge in any and misunderstand my motivation. I am as sure as I can be that my current partner and I could transition into a friendship model if it worked better for us. That's why ive allowed some contact.

Last edited by london; 02-11-2014 at 08:44 AM.
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  #23  
Old 02-12-2014, 01:06 AM
Atlantis Atlantis is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PolyinPractice View Post
How does one achieve that, except by the kids used to people coming and going? I'm really open to hearing other options; as I would like to be able to tell my partner about them. I myself am not able to come up with anything :-p and this is an issue, actually, for us.

Or am I paranoid that the kids "finding out" will be problematic for them? (At least for now, when they are too young to understand)?
Are you asking how to deal with introducing a romantic partner?
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  #24  
Old 02-12-2014, 03:24 PM
PolyinPractice PolyinPractice is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Atlantis View Post
Are you asking how to deal with introducing a romantic partner?
More on how to accustom children to being around friends of the parent. That way when a new romantic relationship comes round, there is a natural "in" for the person to be around the household. If the parent has to choose between being with kids or being on a date, it makes it much harder for a relationship to develop. If the new paramour can be around the kids, not necessarily "connecting" with, they can get much more time.
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  #25  
Old 02-12-2014, 03:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PolyinPractice View Post
More on how to accustom children to being around friends of the parent.
At the risk of being flippant, I'm going to say "bring your children around your friends."

If they see and experience your social life, even on the periphery, then people's presence will be natural for them. Or, at least, not such an oddball event that they latch on to it in some way differently than they should.

I'm not talking about the "night out" type of things - I get invited to those and turn them down when I have my kids, since I can't really intermingle the two (going out drinking is not a kids activity), but I will try to get friends over the house for, say, a cookout or the like. They bring their kids, and the kids will do what they'll do. Younger ones run around like goofballs or play video games together. Older ones sit on opposite corners of the room on their iPods and roll their eyes in unison at us adults.

I wasn't worried about bringing P around the kids because he *had* been a friend beforehand (and would likely still remain in that circle of friends, should we break up). It doesn't make things go swimmingly easy - my oldest daughter still remains at arm's length around him, and I'm not sure if it's some residual post-divorce resentment being tossed his way, or just being thirteen and standoffish in general.

So yeah. If you want your children to see you around your friends more, have your friends around more. Sounds flippant, but it takes effort, scheduling, etc. once you're involving parents and schedules and things.
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  #26  
Old 02-12-2014, 04:10 PM
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What about your partners feelings. Its it really fair to ask them to pretend nothing its going on romantically in front of children is kind of a slap in the face to their importance in your life. Go? is it quality time ?

I have my kids more often than not when Murf is off work and we are together. He would not be happy if he was told sorry no pdas in front of the kids. He would feel devalued and unimportant. Are we making out in front of the kids heck no. But he would not tolerate not being able to cuddle on the couch. Kiss me, and etc.
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  #27  
Old 02-12-2014, 04:57 PM
london london is offline
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That's why I don't habitually have my son around partners. It's unfair and unrealistic to expect them to totally change how they behave and its too soon to behave as if we're dating around him. Many healthy relationships don't work on a romantic level and I don't want to risk my son feeling.they've rejected him or that it's his fault in any way. Best to only integrate "keepers".
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  #28  
Old 02-12-2014, 07:13 PM
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BrigidsDaughter BrigidsDaughter is offline
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I don't really see it as a big issue honestly. Runic Wolf and I have been married 13 years. Our son has grown up around our friends, some who have been FWB, his entire life. Our friends occasionally sleep over, for example the night we moved into our house, we played Rockband until the middle of the night and our guests slept on the couches until they were awake and sober enough to drive home. It is not unheard of for us to hug our friends, curl up on the couch and take a nap with them, etc. My son has come home from school to find Wendigo (bf) and I napping on the couch together. This is normal for him. Sure, Wendigo and I may sneak in a kiss or a grope in passing when he's looking the other way or in the other room, but neither of us has felt stifled by the amount of PDA we can or can't show infront of him. I mean honestly, are you groping your children's parents infront of your kids in public? Are you getting all hot and heavy making out infront of your kids at social gatherings? If not, than why would you expect to be doing that with a significant other?
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  #29  
Old 02-13-2014, 01:34 AM
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Auto and I were just talking about this and she made a good point. In the case of kids who are very clingy, it's even more important to expose them to people coming and going. Sooner or later, they'll have their first relationship and if they're really clingy, they'll fall really hard and fast. This will likely scare the person off, and there's a strong chance the kid will take it as a personal rejection, internalizing it. That's far more detrimental than the pain of exposure early on.
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  #30  
Old 02-13-2014, 01:58 AM
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LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
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That's true Schroeding-but it needs to be in a healthy and productive way, not a traumatizing and increasing of clinginess way.
Also-not in a way that treats other people as disposable tools for helping train the child.

When Maca's gf moved away-that was a great opportunity for Sour Pea to face the reality that people leave. Goodbye's were said and conversations had about the fact that people leave (interestingly she has no issue with death-just unexplained disappearances).

I think there is a "whole picture" thing that needs addressed. It's not about any one detail, it's about the whole. In the case of a stranger, the risks far outweigh the benefits. If it's a friend, then it's definitely worth considering the possibility that the benefits may outweigh the risks.

I can't imagine (as I've said elsewhere on the forum) not having an integrated social/family group. Friends are treated as family and they come and go regularly, even when we aren't home. So our children ARE very socialized.
However-strangers do not. People earn their right to be a part of our circle through interactions outside of our family dynamic. Kids may "see them around" but they don't see them HERE until they are already established as "friends of the family".

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