If you know that you want kids how do you bring this up during the dating process? Obviously, you don't want to waste your time. But equally, you don't want to scare people off by being too explicit about this too soon. Today I've got six tips on when and how to have that all-important conversation around having kids.
Tip number one
My first tip is to remember on all your dates, you always have to communicate. Remember your mindset here: you're not looking for any old relationship, because you need to have a kid. If you form the right relationship with someone, then you'd love to start a family with that person. It sounds subtle but there's a big difference between these two things.
Coming from the place of thinking that if you meet the right person, you'd love to have a family is different from needing to have a family right now. Is that something you're able to do or not?
(Sidenote: This is easier said than done when you feel under time pressure to start a family.)
Tip number two
You can prepare your dates for the fact that you want to have kids by putting them on your dating profile. Now, of course, not all of us meet their dates online. But if you are using them at the moment it's a good way to get ahead and communicate your values.
Could you show a picture of you hanging out with friends, kids or your nephews or nieces? Could you say in so many words that you are family-orientated on your profile?
My best days out involve running around the park with my nephews, followed by large amounts of ice cream.
If kids are important to you, and you are using online dating, make sure you communicate that in some way. You do not have to use the words "family-orientated" but make sure your values are implied.
Tip number three
When you are on dates, focus on talking about what qualities you like in a person. You could point out that you are drawn to people who are responsible or state that you are family orientated.
When you come from the place of talking about your preferences, you're coming at this date from the place of working out whether they are right for you. You are still in the process of choosing them. You are communicating that your focus is on what's important to you and your partner, rather than needing a child.
Tip number four
Focus on how they're actually interacting with you before you get to the kid's thing. The first thing you need to establish is, do you have a connection? Are they treating you in the way that you'd like to be treated?
Do not go to the kid's thing, until you've established your connection as people. Your first questions are: do we get along? Do I feel comfortable with this person?
Tip number five
If the conversation around kids does come up, own the fact that you want to have children. Remember, actually, to someone who's aligned with you values wise, that's a really attractive quality. If you say, "I love kids, I'd love to have a family one day" or "I see myself as being a mum", you're not saying "with you." You're talking about values that are important to you as a person.
Tip number six
The most important thing to remember is that scaring someone off isn't always a bad thing. We have to go through our dating lives filtering people to figure out who is more or less compatible with us.
So yes, my advice is to get to know someone and focus on compatibility first. But, it's also good to be to a degree candid because it allows you to filter through people. This will help you find the people who are most aligned with your values as quickly as possible.
I wouldn't be turning up on the first date and asking someone if they see themselves becoming a dad in the next year. Keep it focused on what your values are, and what your goals are in life. Keep focused on how they're actually showing up for you as a person.
Remember, whether they're with you on this or not, it is just a filter. It's a part of the journey to finding the right person who can take on this incredible and significant role in your life.